On 14 February 1989, Valentine's Day, Salman Rushdie was telephoned by a BBC journalist and told that he had been 'sentenced to death' by the Ayatollah Khomeini. For the first time he heard the word fatwa. His crime? To have written a novel called "The Satanic Verses", which was accused of being 'against Islam, the Prophet and the Quran'. So ...Read MoreOn 14 February 1989, Valentine's Day, Salman Rushdie was telephoned by a BBC journalist and told that he had been 'sentenced to death' by the Ayatollah Khomeini. For the first time he heard the word fatwa. His crime? To have written a novel called "The Satanic Verses", which was accused of being 'against Islam, the Prophet and the Quran'. So begins the extraordinary story of how a writer was forced underground, moving from house to house, with the constant presence of an armed police protection team. He was asked to choose an alias that the police could call him by. He thought of writers he loved and combinations of their names; then it came to him: Conrad and Chekhov - Joseph Anton. How do a writer and his family live with the threat of murder for over nine years? How does he go on working?How does he fall in and out of love? How does despair shape his thoughts and actions, how and why does he stumble, how does he learn to fight back? In this remarkable memoir Rushdie tells that story for the first time; the story of one of the crucial battles, in our time, for freedom of speech. He talks about the sometimes grim, sometimes comic realities of living with armed policemen, and of the close bonds he formed with his protectors; of his struggle for support and understanding from governments, intelligence chiefs, publishers, journalists, and fellow writers; and of how he regained his freedom. It is a book of exceptional frankness and honesty, compelling, provocative, moving, and of vital importance. Because of what happened to Salman Rushdie was the first act of a drama that is still unfolding somewhere in the world every day.Read Less
A Near Fine copy.636 pages Salman Rushdie used the pseudonym Joseph Anton while in hiding following the fatwa declared by the Ayatollah Khomeini in 1988. This is his account of his life under the ten years that followed.
Publishers Weekly, 2012-12-24 After a fatwa ordering his death was issued by Ayatollah Khomeini on Valentine's Day in 1989, brilliant novelist Rushdie opted to take the first names of his two favorite writers and combine them into a pseudonym, in order to protect his identity. The result: Joseph Anton (from Joseph Conrad and Anton Chekov). Narrator Sam Dastor delivers an absolutely stellar reading of the memoir that recounts the life and times of the fictional Anton, through sometimes nightmarish events. Dastor's British dialect is pitch perfect and finely tuned. His delivery is well paced and his character interpretations are inspired. Rushdie himself ably narrates the prologue. A Random House hardcover. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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