Amin Maalouf is a good French-Lebanese writer, and this, a translation from the original French, reads very well.
The occasional reviewer who says that it is one-sided is a bit unfair. It is a history of the Crusades from one point of view, as Maalouf says, and as the title makes clear. In writing the book, he says in the introduction, he has deliberately relied almost exclusively on contemporary Arabic sources. Even so, his account is fairly even-handed in that respect. Sometimes he does write as if he is cheering and jeering at the appropriate places in the story, but all even-handed historians, such as Runciman, make it clear that the Crusaders were on the whole a pretty barbaric bunch. Also although Maalouf describes Crusader-Muslim alliances as "bizarre", he makes it clear that as the Crusader kingdoms become stable, they played a role that often cut across religious lines, and few leaders on either side were consistent allies to their co-religionists, nor consistent enemies to those of another faith.
Also, at the end, after detailing the huge amount that the Europeans learnt in science, technology, art, culture, medicine and so on from the Muslim world, he then considers a few things that the Muslim world even at the time could have learnt from the otherwise less advanced west, if they had wished to.
However, the strength of the book doesn't come from its even-handedness. A good history book can be as biased as the writer wants it to be in tone, so long as it is factually accurate. Maalouf's account substantially agrees with (for example) Runciman's history, but fills it out by explaining the debates, the conflicts and the plans that the Muslims had in response to the invasion.
The single perspective of the narrative would be a weakness if someone were to take this as the last word, or the most complete account of the Crusades. At times it reads almost like Hamlet without the prince, as the driving force of the narrative, necessarily, is the Crusaders themselves. Maalouf's account of them is very thin, especially when it comes to explaining their motivations, the plea for help of the Byzantine emperor, the preaching of Peter the Hermit, the mass hysteria, the hopes and the fantasies and so on. This is not really a weakness of the book, but just something you should bear in mind. Whatever the grounds for your interest in the Crusades, you would need to read an account of how it all came about. Runciman's history is the standard work, and still well regarded. Maalouf however, will add much vital information that Runciman doesn't cover, however limited Maalouf's book would be considered in itself.
The great strengths of Maalouf's book come when he is explaining the political and social context of the Muslim world at the time. His explanation of the divisions between Turkish military commander and Arab civilian, burgher and villager, qadi and officer, Sunni and Shia gives you a deeper understanding of the Crusades than you would have if you only read other sources. He also explains the Assassins in a way that treats them not as an exotic curiosity, but an important social movement.
This book will enrich whatever else you have read about the Crusades. Although many of the original Arabic texts have now been translated, his overview and narrative is based on a wide variety of Arabic sources, and gives a broad understanding of what the Muslims thought of the event, and how they reacted to it.