Grove Press announced on Wednesday that they will publish Australian author Gregory David Roberts’ second novel, The Mountain Shadow, on October 13, 2015 (ISBN 978-0802124456; not yet listed on wholesaler catalogs). A sequel to Shantaram (Macmillan/St. Martin’s), it follows Roberts’ 2004 epic about Lin, an escaped convict from Australia, and his adventures in Bombay, which was loosely based on the author’s own life after his conviction for bank robbery.
Shantaram was a success in the author’s own country, where he was already somewhat of a legend, inspired cult followings when it was published here (Johnny Depp has worked for several years to get a film adaptation off the ground) and was considered a great, although long (933 pages), yarn by The New York Times, USA Today and The Washington Post, which sums up the plot:
“ … the book, told in 933 readable pages, follows [Lin] from a remote Indian village in monsoon season to the Afghan mountains in winter, but mostly it takes place in Bombay: in a slum where he founds a medical clinic, in a prison where he is beaten and tortured, in meetings of a branch of the India mafia led by Abdel Khader Khan, an Afghan who becomes a father figure and employer for the fugitive.”
According to Grove press release The Mountain Shadow is “set two years after the events in Shantaram, Bombay is now a different world, with different rules. Lin’s search for love and faith leads him through secret and violent intrigues to the dangerous truth.”
It’s difficult to predict if the public will be interested in a sequel that is ten years after the first success, but consider that Shantaram continues to inspire customer reviews on Amazon and copies continue to circulate from libraries.