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The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie

The Satanic Verses (1988)

by Salman Rushdie

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
9,374110492 (3.75)527
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» See also 527 mentions

English (101)  Dutch (3)  French (2)  Hungarian (1)  Spanish (1)  Danish (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  All languages (110)
Showing 1-5 of 101 (next | show all)
this wasn't for me, or it was the wrong time for me to read it. it was largely over my head both in content and style. it's *so* strange and dense and convoluted. i don't generally have trouble keeping track of characters but here they come and go (only to reappear much later, sometimes even after dying) that i was often confused when reading this. it started out readable, but sounding like tom robbins; i find robbins so unique that it really surprised me. that remained true at times throughout, but also his style changed as the book went on. there are so many references (i believe) to things i don't know or understand. i think i will give it another try much later, when i've learned something about islam or when i take a class on this book so an instructor can hold my hand a bit along the way. i think with guidance i would find this brilliant. but as it stands i just mostly didn't get it and wasn't really able to appreciate it. i'm not sure, though, that it's the kind of book one ever enjoys; it's work to read this, i just wanted more of a payoff for the effort. (but think it's my own shortcomings that i couldn't find it this time around.) ( )
  overlycriticalelisa | Dec 24, 2018 |
Definitely worth the read. Rushdie is a resounding, powerful storyteller. ( )
  DanielSTJ | Dec 18, 2018 |
It was difficult for me to get through this book. I can appreciate it as a work of art and see what is interesting and unique about it, but the read was mostly hard work rather than enjoyable. I think it would have been much easier to follow it if I were reading it for a class where a teacher was guiding me through it. On my own, I just had to accept that I was definitely missing stuff and not remembering things because there were so many characters to learn who vanished and reappeared as the book progressed through its nine parts. It got better toward the end when things were coming together and I could feel myself reading at a faster pace because it was easier to follow. ( )
1 vote 3njennn | Nov 25, 2018 |
TL;DR: I liked this book, but it's not exactly a pleasure read.
That being said...
This book is a behemoth: both in size as well as in density of content. It's not a book that will please every reader (Ayatollah Khomeini proved that much), as it covers a lot of uncomfortable topics: religion (specifically Islam and Hinduism), race, immigration, sex and humanity's capacity of evil. It is also written in a very raw, almost totally unedited way that is anathema to reading smoothly and quickly. You have to read slowly and deliberately, taking in the sentence and then doubling back to check the context, trying to remember the last thought in the stream-of-consciousness Rushdie put down on the page. Rushdie also plays with the trope of the unreliable narrator (For example, [it's not explicitly shown whether the Ayesha pilgrimage drowns or the Arabian Sea does part for them]) and the reader is left questioning what is truly happening at any given time.
I'd recommend listening to the audiobook version if you have the same annoyance with purposeful misspellings and text placement that I do, Sam Dastor does a brilliant job narrating it.
Both the topics and style of prose are difficult to parse at times, and it is a LONG book (more than 500 pages!) It took me six and a half months of fairly intensive concentration to just get through the first read, and I'm still not sure I understand it any better than I started. That being said, I'm definitely going to read it again in the future. I found it to be a beautiful treatise on love and the nature of good and evil, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a book to challenge them.
(GoodReads review, posted on Oct. 2, 2016)
  msemmag | Nov 14, 2018 |
So literary is this novel, so epic, that at times I expected heroic couplets. At other times, I wanted Leopold Bloom to stagger through the door, so strongly did I experience this as an Anglo-Indian Ulysses, sometimes exhilarating, sometimes long-winded, always a little confusing. And yes, through the extratextual infamy and the competing intertextual narratives of terror and tragedy, there is also comedy. There's a Rabelaisian bawdiness that takes joy in trampling social graces, until the bundled story-lines short-circuit once more, showering fantastical images and obscure allusions over the heads of readers. I can imagine, in fact, that this is a literature professor's dream exam text, with so much material to explain, compare, and contrast. On the other hand, it is also tempting to think that some of the wilder paragraphs would be rejected out of hand by any self-respecting creative writing group, as lacking proper form and being loquacious for the sake of loquaciousness. Compare and contrast. If you're worried about spoilers, I'm not sure if I can provide any. Given the blurred lines between dream and reality, maybe nothing happens at all. I can say, though, that the energy of the language and the muscularity of the competing visions make for a spectacular flight, even if, like any long-haul route, you may find yourself checking your watch for the arrival time before you're even half way through the first movie. ( )
  Kanikoski | Sep 25, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 101 (next | show all)
Talent? Not in question. Big talent. Ambition? Boundless ambition. Salman Rushdie is a storyteller of prodigious powers, able to conjure up whole geographies, causalities, climates, creatures, customs, out of thin air. Yet, in the end, what have we? As a display of narrative energy and wealth of invention, ''The Satanic Verses'' is impressive. As a sustained exploration of the human condition, it flies apart into delirium.
The Satanic Verses is Salman Rushdie's fourth novel, first published in 1988 and inspired in part by the life of Muhammad.
added by dylan9 | editwikipedia
Los Versos Satánicos; Novela 1988, Conj de Editoriales Españolas 1989; Salman Rushide; India - Inglaterra.

Hasta las personas que no leen habrán escuchado hablar alguna vez de este libro y/o de su autor; yo era uno de aquellos a finales de los 80’s. Cuando empezé a leer en el ‘94 sabía que éste sería uno de esos libros que leería alguna vez. No recuerdo haberlo visto y dejado pasar: simplemente no lo encontraba, pero tampoco lo buscaba. Y ahora, caminando por una librería de segunda mano lo encontré en primera edición española, en buen estado y a un precio razonable: y habían 2 ejemplares. Para los fanáticos islámicos es blasfemo desde que el Ayatolá Jomeini sentenciara una fatwa en febrero del ‘89 condenando a muerte a Rushdie por escribir tal obra. Vamos al libro:
De sus 9 capítulos sólo la parte 1 del Cap 1 me pareció la más difícil de digerir: la conversa y pensamientos de los hindúes-musulmanos Gibreel Farishta y Saladim Chamcha durante la caída en la explosíon del avión sobre Londres.
En esta primera historia lo interesante es la metamorfosis que se da con la sobrevivencia y renacimiento: Farishta en el Arcángel Gabriel, con aureola y todo, y Chamcha en Shaitan, con pequeños cuernos naciendo de sus sienes, y poseedor de un aliento sulfúrico. En capítulos posteriores la descripción de la metamorfosis del segundo, acostumbrándose a su nueva condición de macho cabrío es magistral.: mucha ironía y humor negro en esos capítulos.
Farishta, actor e ídolo del cine hindúe, y Chamcha, el hombre de las mil y una voces, que se abrió paso haciendo comerciales de tv, ganándose de a pocos un lugar en esa misma indústria, anglófilo, y desencantado de su fé y su cultura, adoptando como suya la inglesa (quizá el alter ego de Rushidie). Luego de caer en la playa londinense Chamcha, en plena metamorfosis, es arrestado y ultrajado por la policía inglesa en el apartamento de Rosa Diamond, mientras que Farishta , vestido con ropas del difunto esposo de ésta es hasta respetado por los mismos policías, sin necesidad de mencionar palabra alguna. Ahí hay un primer punto de quiebre: el angélico guarda silencio mientras ve como su amigo es arrestado y clamándole que cuente a sus captores lo ocurrido, mientras que el diabólico es maltratado, humillado y arrestado injustamente, sin darle la mínima opción de defenderse, ni escucharlo, de decirles que él es uno de los dos únicos sobrevivientes de la explosión de avión.
La segunda historia: Ayesha, la bella joven con su nube de mariposas amarillas que la siguen por donde vaya, que influenciada en sueños por el arcángel Gabriel inicia un recorrido convenciendo a todo un pueblo ir hacia la Meca en una peregrinación bíblica. Aquí también las historias de Mishal, y su esposo Mizra Saed con su ateísmo, tratando de disuadir a su mujer enferma en no escuchar las palabras de Ayesha rinden grandes páginas del libro.
La tercera historia es sobre Mahound (se supone que es Mahoma), el comerciante que se convierte en profeta, quien inicia una religión en un desértico pueblo, Jahilia, y, quien inspirado por el Arcángel Gabriel quien le hablaba en sueños en el Monte Cone incluye unos versos dictados por él, pero luego cree que quien le recitó esos versos fue Shaitan. Rushidie hace ver que ni de Shaitan, ni del arcángel salieron aquellos versos, tan solo de la cabeza de Mahound. Esta historia es corta y una de las menos interesantes en comparación con las dos primeras, pero es la que debe haber iniciado la ira del Ayatolá Jomeini.
Todo un clásico de la literatura contemporánea. Imprescindible
added by manigna | editNHK

» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rushdie, SalmanAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Capriolo, EttoreTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Emeis, MarijkeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Häilä, ArtoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"Satan, being thus confined to a vagabond, wandering, unsettled condition, is without any certain abode; for though he has, in consequence of his angelic nature, a kind of empire in the liquid waste or air, yet this is certainly part of his punishment, that he is... without any fixed place, or space, allowed him to rest the sole of his foot upon." ~ daniel defoe, the history of the devil
Dedicated to the individuals and organizations who have supported this publication.
First words
"To be born again " sang Gibreel Farishta tumbling from the heavens, "first you have to die."
If you live in the twentieth century you do not find it hard to see yourself in those, more desperate than yourself, who seek to shape it to their will.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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A tale of two men/human angel and demon/amazing writing!  (ReadWriteLib)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0312270828, Paperback)

No book in modern times has matched the uproar sparked by Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses, which earned its author a death sentence. Furor aside, it is a marvelously erudite study of good and evil, a feast of language served up by a writer at the height of his powers, and a rollicking comic fable. The book begins with two Indians, Gibreel Farishta ("for fifteen years the biggest star in the history of the Indian movies") and Saladin Chamcha, a Bombay expatriate returning from his first visit to his homeland in 15 years, plummeting from the sky after the explosion of their jetliner, and proceeds through a series of metamorphoses, dreams and revelations. Rushdie's powers of invention are astonishing in this Whitbread Prize winner.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:39 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Just before dawn one winter's morning, a hijacked jetliner explodes above the English Channel. Through the falling debris, two men plummet from the sky. Washing up on the snow-covered sands of an English beach, they proceed through a series of metamorphoses, dreams, and revelations.… (more)

» see all 8 descriptions

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