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The Submission by Amy Waldman

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Longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction 2012.

Shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award 2011.

In this deeply humane novel, the breadth of Amy Waldman's cast of characters is matched by her startling ability to conjure their perspectives. A striking portrait of a fractured city striving to make itself whole, The Submission is a piercing and resonant novel by an important new talent.

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The Submission by Amy Waldman

Shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award 2011.

Ten years after 9/11, this dazzling, kaleidoscopic novel reimagines its aftermath. A jury gathers in Manhattan to select a memorial for the victims of a devastating terrorist attack. Their fraught deliberations complete, the jurors open the envelope containing the anonymous winner's name - and discover he is an American Muslim. Instantly they are cast into roiling debate about the claims of grief, the ambiguities of art, and the meaning of Islam. Their conflicted response is only a preamble to the country's. The memorial's designer is an enigmatic, ambitious architect named Mohammad Khan. His fiercest defender on the jury is its sole widow, the self-possessed and mediagenic Claire Burwell. But when the news of his selection leaks to the press, she finds herself under pressure from outraged family members and in collision with hungry journalists, wary activists, opportunistic politicians, fellow jurors, and Khan himself - as unknowable as he is gifted. In the fight for both advantage and their ideals, all will bring the emotional weight of their own histories to bear on the urgent question of how to remember, and understand, a national tragedy.

Browse inside this book


Exceptional debut ... a tale of complexity and tension...Waldman's prose is almost always pitch-perfect ... The characters are wholly realised and believable as individuals, but they also stand in for stories and conflicts that go beyond their own lives. -- Kamila Shamsie Guardian, Book of the Week From this coup de theatre Waldman skilfully spins out an ever-widening cast list...This is a deeply thoughtful and moving account of the myriad ways in which, when the towers came down, the US psyche became a casualty too. -- Michael Prodger Financial Times An absorbing, accomplished intelligent, satisfying read Sunday Times The novel is punctuated with darkly comic details ... compelling ...Elegantly written and tightly plotted... [this] novel, at once lucid, illuminating and entertaining is a necessary gift. -- Claire Messud New York Times Book Review Panoramic in scope but thrillingly light on its feet ... A gripping, deeply intelligent novel Marie Claire

About the Author

Amy Waldman was co-chief of the South Asia bureau of The New York Times. Her fiction has appeared in The Atlantic and the Boston Review and is anthologized in The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2010. She lives with her family in Brooklyn. This is her first novel.

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Book Info

Publication date

5th July 2012


Amy Waldman

More books by Amy Waldman
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Windmill Books an imprint of Cornerstone


416 pages


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