The epic tale of a woman who breathes a fantastical empire into existence, only to be consumed by it over the centuries – from the transcendent imagination of Booker Prize-winning, internationally bestselling author.
In the wake of an insignificant battle between two long-forgotten kingdoms in fourteenth-century southern India, a nine-year-old girl has a divine encounter that will change the course of history. After witnessing the death of her mother, the grief-stricken Pampa Kampana becomes a vessel for the goddess Parvati, who begins to speak out of the girl’s mouth. Granting her powers beyond Pampa Kampana’s comprehension, the goddess tells her that she will be instrumental in the rise of a great city called Bisnaga – literally ‘victory city’ -the wonder of the world.
Over the next two hundred and fifty years, Pampa Kampana’s life becomes deeply interwoven with Bisnaga’s, from its literal sowing out of a bag of magic seeds to its tragic ruination in the most human of ways: the hubris of those in power. Whispering Bisnaga and its citizens into existence, Pampa Kampana attempts to make good on the task that Parvati set for her: to give women equal agency in a patriarchal world. But all stories have a way of getting away from their creator, and Bisnaga is no exception. As years pass, rulers come and go, battles are won and lost, and allegiances shift, the very fabric of Bisnaga becomes an ever more complex tapestry – with Pampa Kampana at its centre.
Brilliantly styled as a translation of an ancient epic, this is a saga of love, adventure and myth that is in itself a testament to the power of storytelling.
PRAISE FOR VICTORY CITY
Salman Rushdie has created a radiant myth about myth-making. Victory City is a book that privileges the ethical imagination and the unmistakable permanence of storytelling. Within these pages, you will find global travellers, rapacious kings, cave dwellers, prophets of doom and, at its fierce and eloquent heart, a storyteller who reminds that death may take away a lot of things, but never the power of our words. Beyond war, beyond violence, even beyond life itself, the story, and the storyteller, lasts. — COLUM McCANN
Victory City is vast and deep, soaring and scintillating. Every page is magical, every page is gorgeous. In the way of a significant work of art, it does not resemble any other novel I could name. A major accomplishment by one of our greatest living writers.
— MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM
No one, and I mean no one, can bring an entire world to life with the authority, wisdom, humour and panache of Salman Rushdie. In the pantheon of his novels, Victory City stands out as a book of particular imaginative achievement. It defies category, but it invites pleasure. — GARY SHTEYNGART
Salman Rushdie is a genius and I wish he could read me a story – or a chapter of his book – every night before bed. The scale and scope of his intellect and his imagination is googolplex, as big as infinity, and then some. In Victory City, he spins an epic tale that brings us back to the key questions of what it is to be human, to be authentic, to love and to grieve.
— A. M. HOMES
This is Salman Rushdie at his most virtuosic, a wondrous tale of medieval India which is also, as ever, a fable about the triumph of life – in all its joyous, messy excess – over the forces of fanaticism and darkness.
— HARI KUNZRU
The book will release on 9th February,2023 , confirmed the publicist for the book , Peter Modoli, General Manager, Penguin Random House
About The Author
Salman Rushdieis 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.