Johanna's Reviews > The Satanic Verses

The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
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's review
Sep 09, 07

Recommended for: Magical Realism Fans, Neil Gaiman fans, studiers and enthusiasts of post-colonial politics
Read in September, 2007

This book is not for the faint of heart. It is overwhelming in terms of plot, imagery, and its large cast of characters. However, it is completely worth it and it flows beautifully once you get in tune with the book. I bought the Satanic Verses when I was 17 and I was not ready for it--I read 15 pages and then put it away. I picked it up again 7 years later and could not put it down.

There is much packed into this book. One would have to read it many many times to get the full meaning of it, but at the same time it is a highly enjoyable and pleasurable read. By combining the two, this book becomes perfect--you can enjoy it on first read, but you will want to read it again, and again. Rushdie is the consummate storyteller. Like Neil Gaiman, he is amazing at the actual "telling" of the story, as opposed to just having interesting characters and plots (although he does). He is a storyteller in the tradition of the old tellers, the bards and minstrels and trovadores of a bygone age. Rushdie keeps it alive.

However, a warning. There is a reason that Rushdie had a fatwa declared against him. This book does not portray the Prophet Mohammed in the best light. At all. That is something people may find offensive. I found it fascinating in terms of exploring the genesis of a religion. Rushdie keeps your guessing--in the end, you have to decide what you believe about the characters, including Mohammed.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Nasim Shademan Hi
actually...i didn't get the message of the book...would you please explain it for me in just some few lines?please?

George ^Nasim, don't let others do the thinking for you. Plus interpretation can be varied as with other works of art and art forms. Being halfway through I see political commentary on the nature of racism and xenophobia in Thatcher-era Britain. Also the usual tug and pull of the east and west in the mind of Rusdhie's characters and of course the criticism and ironies of religious belief.

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