Salman Rushdie is a name that you cannot ignore while talking about English literature. He is one of the most iconic authors living today. His works have been translated into over 40 languages. Born on June 19, 1947, in Bombay in a Muslim family of Kashmiri descent, Rushdie has a long list of awards to his name. Here are a few books by him that are a must-read:
This is one of the most famous books by Rushdie. It won the Booker Prize since then has been deemed to be “the best novel of all winners” on two separate anniversaries of the prize, the 25th, and on the 40th. The book is about a boy called Saleem who is born at midnight on 15th August 1947. He is born with special powers and discovers there are many like him who are born around midnight and have powers. The book deals with India’s transition from British colonialism to independence and the partition of India.
The Satanic Verses
The Satanic Verses is Salman Rushdie’s fourth novel, first published in 1988. This book is not for people who get easily offended. Satanic verses is by far the most controversial book by Salman Rushdie. The book is about two Indian Muslims, Farishta a Bollywood actor known for playing Hindu deities, and Chamcha who is a voiceover artist in England. They both die in a hijacked plane but are miraculously saved, only Farishta takes on the personality of the archangel Gabriel and Chamcha that of a devil. A Fatwa was taken out against Salman after this book.
The Moor’s Last Sigh
The Moor’s Last Sigh is the fifth novel by Salman Rushdie, published in 1995. It is set in the Indian cities of Bombay and Cochin. The book follows Moraes ‘Moor’ Zogoiby through his life. Like all his books, this one also has an element of the fantastic- Moor ages twice as fast as a normal man and has a deformed hand. The book also traces his family history back generations which will explain why he is this way. The book was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and won the Whitbread Prize for ‘Best novel’ and the Aristeion Prize in 1996.
Imaginary Homelands is a collection of essays written by Salman Rushdie covering a wide variety of topics. In addition to the title essay, the collection also includes “‘Commonwealth Literature’ Does Not Exist”. Salman Rushdie’s “Imaginary Homelands” is an essay that propounds an anti-essentialist view of place. It was originally published in 1991.
Haroun And The Sea of Stories
Haroun and the Sea of Stories is a 1990 children’s book by Salman Rushdie. It was Rushdie’s fifth novel, following The Satanic Verses. It is a phantasmagorical story that begins in a city so old and ruinous that it has forgotten its name. It is the story of a young boy called Haroun and his journey.
This is Rushdie’s latest book and has also been nominated for the Booker Prize. In this book, we follow an Indian author who becomes obsessed with a talk show host in the U.S. though he hasn’t met her. He sends her letters signed “Quichotte” and goes on a quest across America for her. The story highlights the issues that America is currently facing.