Can you imagine a life where you lived in fear for your own safety...for your own existence...for nine years? What about your family? What lengths would you go to in order to ensure their safety? These questions and more are the ones answered in Salman Rushdie's "Joseph Anton: A Memoir".
Rushdie faced a death sentence that had been handed down to him by the Ayatollah Khomeini. His crime was not one of murder, or any other crime you might connect with a death sentence. Rushdie was the author of The Satanic Verses, a book that was considered to be an outspoken work that went against Islam, Muhammed and the Quran. The news was delivered to Rushdie via telephone on Valentine's Day, 1989. From that moment on, Rushdie's life changed, and so did his family's.
Rushdie began running. Because he had to keep moving from place to place to avoid being found, he was forced into hiding underground. Rushdie spent his time in the company of a band of police officers who were armed and equipped to protect him. At their request, he chose an alias for them to call him, to avoid using his real name and jeopardizing their mission. He chose the name Joseph Anton.
"Joseph Anton: A Memoir" chronicles the story of those nine years Rushdie spent in hiding in a way that will captivate your mind and leave you wondering about the actions of groups all over the world who still censor freedom of speech. Rushdie learns valuable lessons during this important time in his life. He learns how to persevere under fire, how to continue working, and how to survive under the most extreme circumstances you can imagine. This enthralling audiobook will leave you breathless from beginning to end. Rushdie's other books include The Satanic Verses and Midnight Verses.
On February 14, 1989, Valentine’s Day, Salman Rushdie was
telephoned by a BBC journalist and told 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 more than 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 what happened
to Salman Rushdie was the first act of a drama that is still unfolding
somewhere in the world every day.
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