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Shalimar is a conjured place, but it is also an inheritance. A blend of nature-writing, magical realism and memoir, it is an incantation, but also a ship carrying a family safe inside, a sorrow-song and a fever dream.  This book tells the story of Quinlivan’s Anglo-Asian family whose extraordinary mythology haunts her own sense of time and place over the course of ten years and seven house moves through England, finally settling in rural Devon with a young family of her own. Quinlivan’s story takes on an Odyssean cadence as she meets her grandmother in the form of a teak tree in Ireland, trepasses through a replica of Virgil’s Tomb in a Lutyens garden in Surrey and comes face to face with the Green Man beneath ancient oaks in Hampshire. This book is sure to make its home in the heart of anyone who has ever moved, or migrated, however major or minor in scale.


'Davina Quinlivan is a writer of rare gentleness and insight: In Shalimar she winds us into the skein of her extended diasporic family, expressing the complexity of identity today. Deftly she weaves back and forth in time, as she braids these memories, in a sustained, observant, poetic act of attention, and love.'

Marina Warner


First Edition Signed

Published March 2022 

Hardback 168 pages | 225 x 150 mm

Little Toller Books

Book - Shalimar - Davina Quinlivan