Knife

Knife

Meditations After an Attempted Murder

Summary

A searing, deeply personal account of enduring a brutal attempt on his life, thirty years after the fatwa that was ordered against him - from internationally renowned writer and Booker Prize-winner Salman Rushdie

On the morning of 12 August 2022, Salman Rushdie was standing onstage at the Chautauqua Institution in upstate New York, 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 towards 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 towards 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.

Reviews

  • With both candour and rich detail, and reminding us again of his knack for storytelling, Knife celebrates art and love over violence, resilience over acquiescence
    i, *Books to Look Out for 2024*

About the author

Salman Rushdie

Salman Rushdie is the author of fourteen previous novels, including Midnight's Children (for which he won the Booker Prize and the Best of the Booker), The Satanic Verses, and Quichotte (which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize). A former president of PEN American Center, Rushdie was knighted in 2007 for services to literature and was made a Companion of Honour in the Queen's last Birthday Honours list in 2022.
Learn More

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more