Auto boutiques-francophones Simple and secure cloud storage giftguide Countdown to Black Friday in Home & Kitchen Kindle Black Friday Deals Week in Music SGG Home, Kitchen and Garden Gift Guide
Song of Kali and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy Used
CDN$ 99.80
+ CDN$ 6.49 shipping
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by Nearfine
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Gently used. Expect delivery in 20 days.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Song of Kali Hardcover – 1985

49 customer reviews

See all 9 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
CDN$ 233.97 CDN$ 99.80 Books Gift Guide
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.

Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Bluejay Books; First Printing edition (1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031294408X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312944087
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 15 x 3.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 476 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  •  Would you like to update product info, give feedback on images, or tell us about a lower price?

Product Description

From Amazon

"O terrible wife of Siva / Your tongue is drinking the blood, / O dark Mother! O unclad Mother." It is remarkable that prior to writing this first novel, Dan Simmons had spent only two and a half days in Calcutta, a city "too wicked to be suffered," his narrator says. Fortunately back in print after several years during which it was hard to obtain, this rich, bizarre novel practically reeks with atmosphere. The story concerns an American poet who travels with his Indian wife and their baby to Calcutta to pick up an epic poem cycle about the goddess Kali. The Bengali poet who wrote the poem cycle has disappeared under mysterious circumstances.

Horror critic Edward Bryant calls Song of Kali "an exactingly constructed, brutal, and uncompromising study of the degree to which an evil place may permeate and steep all that makes us human" and writes that it embodies "the stance of a psychologically violent novel about a violent society as a defensible and indisputably moral work of art." Song of Kali won a World Fantasy Award. --Fiona Webster --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


One of the most terrifying books ever written. 'Song of Kali' transcends any cheap thrills you get from a Stephen King novel, Dan Simmons' vision of horror set in the claustrophobic heat of India is fierce and unrelenting. Aberdeen Evening Express --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

See all Product Description

Inside This Book

(Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
First Sentence
"Don't go, Bobby," said my friend. Read the first page
Explore More
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 22 2004
Format: Paperback
After havining seen the cover blurbs. I spent about two thirds of this book wondering what the hell I was missing. The overlong setup failed to get me invested in the main character, a self-involved poet, who comes across as rather petulant, dull and disengaged. We spend a short eternity with Luczack's literary mentor, a boring cliche of a cigar-chomping New Yorker with a heart of gold. Luczack's one saving grace is his capable, intellectually curious wife, whom he mostly talks down to and/or places in peril. (There's a ridiculous bit late in the book where he makes a big display of "I'm not leaving you again, kiddo", only to wander off again as soon as she falls asleep.) I would have been grateful for Luczack to get killed off early and the focus shifted to the wife.
In addition, while the horrified-travelogue aspect of the book is effective, we never go any deeper than Luczack's ugly-American revulsion at a society he doesn't understand. Simmons seems content to paint most residents of Calcutta as potential gangsters or murderous fanatics, and leave it at that. The story only gets interesting (far too late in the book) when the Luczack character mercifully shuts up long enough to let some of the Indians tell their own stories. The storyline involving the Kali cult is genuinely, darkly fascinating and I wish Simmons had done more than scratch the surface of it.
The emotional climax could have been wrenching if only I'd been invested in the main character, and unfortunately the novel peters out with him descending into a world of self-pity for several chapters. Some really interesting horror material here, sandwiched into an otherwise boring novel.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By EisNinE TOP 50 REVIEWER on Dec 30 2014
Format: Paperback
In many ways, Hinduism seems like a complex patchwork of primitive regional myths, bound together by a rich literary tradition detailing the complicated history of the hundreds and thousands of gods in their pantheon. While the Indo-European pantheons are seemingly at odds with the refined Eastern philosophies of karma and reincarnation, Hinduism claimed these gods and goddesses and incorporated them, just as Buddhism devoured the local gods and demons of Asia, and just as Christianity repurposed heathen deities as saints and pagan festivals became Christian celebrations. But the concept of tolerance isn’t highly valued by the supposedly more evolved monotheistic faiths, and trying to temper the more dogmatic tendencies of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam with a modern acceptance of other people’s right to believe differently is like trying to graft pigeon-wings onto a rat. Conversion-by-the-sword is written into their base-code.

Accepting all forms of worship as being equally valid is one of Hinduism and Buddhism’s most impressive philosophical tenets; but when one looks at India for what it is, and what it has been for centuries, it is logical that such a place is where openness would find its earliest proponents. As one of the world’s oldest civilizations, where East meets West, the place where all trade routes began, ended or passed through, religious adherents from every corner of the Old World would eventually collide in India. Tolerance was not so much a product of enlightened thinking as it was an absolute necessity; otherwise, Calcutta would become an endless, frozen explosion of holy wars.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Paul Hickey on Dec 31 2003
Format: Paperback
Wow! I just finished reading Dan Simmons' excellent first novel, "Song of Kali," and I must say that I am extremely impressed by this work of fantastic horror and its meaning in the real world the reader is invited to recognize as both insane and wonderful all at the same time.
Yes, there are some flaws in the book, and for that reason you should ignore the hype and superlative praise showered on it. For starters, the narrator is not a particularly likeable character; he admits to having a short fuse and a quick temper that often seem out of proportion to even minor annoyances.
In addition, the author goes on for too long just setting up this tale, and nothing much of consequence actually happens for the first third of the story. Then there is the problem of the loose ends that do not answer the questions raised by a murder which serves as the emotional climax of the novel. My best guess is that Simmons deliberately left some things obscure to reflect the protagonist's own confused and frustrated inability to understand what prompted the killing, but - if such is the case - it still leaves the reader unsatisfied with the unresolved mystery of why certain events happened as they did.
Finally, "Song of Kali" suffers from a lack of editing and/or proofreading (at least in its paperback edition), as shown by the many typos in the manuscript. Ordinarily, this would not matter a great deal, but in a story that concerns itself with wordsmiths in one form or another (i.e., writers, editors, and a literary agent) the errors are glaring and disrupt the flow of the otherwise nicely nuanced text.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
Report abuse

Most recent customer reviews

Look for similar items by category