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Likely Stories

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Keir Graff and editors from Booklist's adult and youth departments write candidly about books, book reviewing, and the publishing industry

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Monday, May 5, 2008 3:33 pm
Also, He Was Bad at Sports
Posted by: Keir Graff

From the Department of Silver Linings: according to the Independent, Salman Rushdie (The Enchantress of Florence, 2008) told a TV shrink* that a death threat improved his outlook on life (“Rushdie: how the fatwa made me a much nicer man,” by Jonathan Owen):

Sir Salman Rushdie has confessed how he emerged a better person after being under a fatwa that saw him live a life in virtual seclusion for almost a decade.

In 1989, Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini issued the author with a death warrant over alleged blasphemy against the Prophet Mohamed in his novel The Satanic Verses. In a revelatory encounter with clinical psychologist Pamela Connolly, to be shown on Channel 4 later this month, the author claims the decision ultimately helped him become more self-aware.

What was it that Churchill said about a “blessing in disguise”? That it’s “very effectively disguised”? Do I have that right?

*Before you tell me that term is out of fashion, let me just say that the show is called Shrink Rap.

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