Ayatollah Khomeini´s death sentence (later to be known as a `fatwa`) against the author of The Satanic Verses, Salman Rushdie in 1989, is examined in this concise but fascinating book. Mehdi Mozaffari reviews the history of the fatwa from its origins and its evolution into an intrinsic part of Islam. He looks at the general use of fatwa in relation to Islamic rules and traces the evolution of shi´ite Islam from a pacific and quietisk movement into a militant and violent force. The different stages of Shi´a violence before and after the Islamic revolution are studied, and here it can be seen that Rushdie was not the only writer to receive a death sentence from Khomeini. Examining the origins of Shi´a violence, Dr. Mazaffari argues that this violence, especially in its revolutionary form, was not just the result of one mans´s (Khomeini´e ) will; it also emerged because of the economic interests of a social group, the Bazar.