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A spellbinding historical novel set in eighteenth-century India, England, and France, about a young man's dream of leaving a mark on the world. Abbas is just seventeen years old when his gifts as a woodcarver come to the attention of Tipu Sultan, and he is drawn into service at the palace in order to build a giant tiger automaton for Tipu's sons, a gift to commemorate their return from British captivity. His fate - and the fate of the wooden tiger he helps create - will mirror the vicissitudes of nations and dynasties ravaged by war across India and Europe.. Working alongside the legendary French clockmaker Lucien du Leze, Abbas hones his craft, learns French, and meets Jehanne, the daughter of a French expatriate. When Du Leze is finally permitted to return home to Rouen, he invites Abbas to come along as his apprentice.

About the Author

Tania James

Tania James is the author of three works of fiction, most recently the novel The Tusk That Did the Damage (Knopf) . Tusk was named a Best Book of 2015 by The San Francisco Chronicle, The Guardian, and NPR, and shortlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize. Her short stories have appeared in One Story, The New Yorker, Granta, Freeman's Anthology, Oxford American, and other venues. James is an associate professor at George Mason University, and lives in Washington DC. Her forthcoming novel, Loot, will be published by Knopf in June 2023.

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