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Knife
Cover of Knife
Knife
Meditations After an Attempted Murder
#1 NATIONAL BESTSELLER • From Booker Prize winner Salman Rushdie, a searing, deeply personal account of enduring—and surviving—an attempt on his life thirty years after the fatwa that was ordered against him
 
On the morning of August 12, 2022, Salman Rushdie was standing onstage at the Chautauqua Institution, preparing to give a lecture on the importance of keeping writers safe from harm, when a man in black—black clothes, black mask—rushed down the aisle toward him, wielding a knife. His first thought: So it’s you. Here you are.

What followed was a horrific act of violence that shook the literary world and beyond. Now, for the first time, and in unforgettable detail, Rushdie relives the traumatic events of that day and its aftermath, as well as his journey toward physical recovery and the healing that was made possible by the love and support of his wife, Eliza, his family, his army of doctors and physical therapists, and his community of readers worldwide.
Knife is Rushdie at the peak of his powers, writing with urgency, with gravity, with unflinching honesty. It is also a deeply moving reminder of literature’s capacity to make sense of the unthinkable, an intimate and life-affirming meditation on life, loss, love, art—and finding the strength to stand up again.
#1 NATIONAL BESTSELLER • From Booker Prize winner Salman Rushdie, a searing, deeply personal account of enduring—and surviving—an attempt on his life thirty years after the fatwa that was ordered against him
 
On the morning of August 12, 2022, Salman Rushdie was standing onstage at the Chautauqua Institution, preparing to give a lecture on the importance of keeping writers safe from harm, when a man in black—black clothes, black mask—rushed down the aisle toward him, wielding a knife. His first thought: So it’s you. Here you are.

What followed was a horrific act of violence that shook the literary world and beyond. Now, for the first time, and in unforgettable detail, Rushdie relives the traumatic events of that day and its aftermath, as well as his journey toward physical recovery and the healing that was made possible by the love and support of his wife, Eliza, his family, his army of doctors and physical therapists, and his community of readers worldwide.
Knife is Rushdie at the peak of his powers, writing with urgency, with gravity, with unflinching honesty. It is also a deeply moving reminder of literature’s capacity to make sense of the unthinkable, an intimate and life-affirming meditation on life, loss, love, art—and finding the strength to stand up again.
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  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 13, 2024
    Rushdie follows Victory City with a forceful and surprisingly good-humored account of the 2022 knife attack that nearly killed him. At a speaking engagement in Chautaqua, N.Y., a 24-year-old man Rushdie refers to only as “A” rushed the stage where he was speaking and stabbed him multiple times, including in the eye. Authorities swiftly connected the assault to the fatwa issued by Ayatollah Khomeini after Rushdie published The Satanic Verses in 1988. Rushdie chronicles the year following the attack, during which he recovered from liver damage, the removal of part of his small intestine, and the loss of his right eye. Though he writes of being plagued by nightmares and gory memories of the assault, Rushdie’s wit shines through (“Let me offer this piece of advice to you, gentle reader: if you can avoid having your eyelid sewn shut... avoid it”). Just as arresting is an imagined conversation with A, which sees Rushdie trying to parse his attacker’s religious convictions. By the time the narrative comes full circle, with Rushdie speaking on the same Chautaqua stage a year later, he’s opened a fascinating window into perhaps the most vulnerable period of his life. It’s a rewarding tale of resilience.

  • AudioFile Magazine Salman Rushdie offers an emotionally resonant account of the shocking knife attack that almost ended his life in 2022 in Chautauqua, New York. In a measured tone, Rushdie describes the events of that day, including the excruciating 27 seconds in which he encountered his would-be assassin and the terrible graphically described wounds that his body sustained. While the attack is this work's focal point, Rushdie also reflects on his long and often frustrating recovery and the people who sustained him, including compassionate healthcare workers and his beloved wife and children. Interwoven throughout are musings on literature, writing, politics, friendship, and religion, delivered with passion and more than a little humor. Wide-ranging and deeply insightful, this meditation on life, love, and resilience makes for compelling listening. S.A.H. © AudioFile 2024, Portland, Maine
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Knife
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Meditations After an Attempted Murder
Salman Rushdie
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