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Salman Rushdie on Luka and the Fire of Life

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Date and time
Monday, November 29, 2010

Salman Rushdie reads from his newest novel, *Luka and the Fire of Life*, a follow-up to the much beloved *Haroun and the Sea of Stories*. This new novel centers on Luka, Haroun's younger brother, who must save his father from certain doom. For Rashid Khalifa, the legendary storyteller of Kahani, has fallen into deep sleep from which no one can wake him. To keep his father from slipping away entirely, Luka must travel to the Magic World and steal the ever-burning Fire of Life. Thus begins a quest replete with unlikely creatures, strange alliances, and seemingly insurmountable challenges as Luka and an assortment of enchanted companions race through peril after peril, pass through the land of the Badly Behaved Gods, and reach the Fire itself, where Luka's fate, and that of his father, will be decided.

Salman Rushdie is the author of ten novels: Grimus, Midnight’s Children (which was awarded the Booker Prize in 1981), Shame, The Satanic Verses, Haroun and the Sea of Stories, The Moor’s Last Sigh, The Ground Beneath Her Feet, Fury, Shalimar the Clown and The Enchantress of Florence. He is also the author of a book of stories, East, West, and three works of non-fiction - Imaginary Homelands, The Jaguar Smile, and Step Across This Line. He is the co-editor of Mirrorwork, an anthology of contemporary Indian writing, and of the 2008 Best American Short Stories anthology.
Maria Tatar, chair of Folklore and Mythology and the John L. Loeb Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures at Harvard University, is editor of *The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales*. The author of books on the Brothers Grimm, on fairy tales (*The Hard Facts of the Grimms' Fairy Tales* and *Off with Their Heads!*), and on the cultural impact of mesmerist theories and practices of 19th and 20th century literature, she has also authored Lustmord, which explores the theme of sexual violence in the literature, film, and art of the Weimar period in Germany. In addition, she has edited an anthology of fairy tales published as a Norton Critical Edition. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.