The Satanic Verses

Salman Rushdie, Author Viking Books $27.95 (560p) ISBN 978-0-670-82537-0
Banned in India before publication, this immense novel by Booker Prize-winner Rushdie ( Midnight's Children ) pits Good against Evil in a whimsical and fantastic tale. Two actors from India, ``prancing'' Gibreel Farishta and ``buttony, pursed'' Saladin Chamcha, are flying across the English Channel when the first of many implausible events occurs: the jet explodes. As the two men plummet to the earth, ``like titbits of tobacco from a broken old cigar,'' they argue, sing and are transformed. When they are found on an English beach, the only survivors of the blast, Gibreel has sprouted a halo while Saladin has developed hooves, hairy legs and the beginnings of what seem like horns. What follows is a series of allegorical tales that challenges assumptions about both human and divine nature. Rushdie's fanciful language is as concentrated and overwhelming as a paisley pattern. Angels are demonic and demons are angelic as we are propelled through one illuminating episode after another. The narrative is somewhat burdened by self-consciousness that borders on preciosity, but for Rushdie fans this is a splendid feast. 50,000 first printing; $50,000 ad/promo; first serial to Harper's; BOMC alternate; QPBC alternate; author tour. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 02/01/1989
Paperback - 576 pages - 978-0-676-97063-0
Paperback - 561 pages - 978-0-8129-7671-7
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Paperback - 561 pages - 978-0-312-27082-7
Paperback - 561 pages - 978-0-8050-5309-8
Prebound-Sewn - 561 pages - 978-0-613-70624-7
Open Ebook - 576 pages - 978-0-307-78665-4
Open Ebook - 560 pages - 978-1-4090-5885-4
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