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Saladin: Hero of Islam [Kindle Edition]

Geoffrey Hindley
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £12.99
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Book Description

The extraordinary character and career of Saladin are the keys to understanding the Battle of Hattin, the fall of Jerusalem and the failure of the Third Crusade. He united warring Muslim lands, reconquered the bulk of Crusader states and faced the Richard the Lion Heart, king of England, in one of the most famous confrontations in medieval warfare. Geoffrey Hindley's sympathetic and highly readable study of the life and times of this remarkable, many-sided man, who dominated the Middle East in his day, gives a fascinating insight into his achievements and into the Muslim world of his contemporaries.

Product Description


This new edition is a well researched, lively and engaging biography. --Defence Focus Magazine

About the Author

Geoffrey Hindley is a distinguished medieval historian who has written widely on many aspects of the period. He has made a special study of medieval warfare and of sieges in particular. His previous books include Castles of Europe, Medieval Warfare, England in the Age of Caxton, Under Siege, Tourists, Travellers and Pilgrims, The Book of Magna Carta and The Crusades. His most recent publications are is A Brief History of the Anglo-Saxons and Medieval Siege and Siegecraft.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1939 KB
  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Pen & Sword (15 Jun. 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007B35SU6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #122,504 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
43 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly objective biography 18 Jun. 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I'm pretty sure that a lot of people like me became interested in Saladin after watching Kingdom of Heaven. While there are quite a few books out there that are written about him, I chose this one because it had the most pages!

However, I am absolutely glad that I purchased this book. Like any good book that is a biography, the elements should not only consist of what the candidate had done in their life but, more importantly, how the situation at their time puts into context the significance of their achievements.

You'll appreciate how Saladin was 'destined' to achieve what he had, by reading about his genealogy and how the events of his family helped direct Saladins' life. The book then goes into great detail about Saladins' political life, and when coming towards the end of his life, how he was truly loved by everyone - friends as well as his enemies.

The author uses simple language that never compromises on detail: this is the definitive book on Saladin, the Hero of Islam.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a tremendous biography 15 Aug. 2008
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
most biographies are bought for reference rather than read for pleasure. This one fits into the second category as well as the first.
Highly readable, well researched, an exceptionally good overview of the life and indeed the times of one of the greatest leaders of Islam, one known and admired in the West as much as in his own land.
Highly recommended.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good narrative 15 Dec. 2010
By Ariri
The book provides an excellent narrative of the life and military expeditions of this great general and warrior. I strongly recommend it to anyone who wishes to know more about this man and the politics of that era and time.
However the only downside is that sometimes the narrative can get a bit confusing as you have to juggle with numerous characters at one time and there is no glossary page at the beginning or end of the book detailing who each of the main characters are but once you've got your head around who's who then its a good read. Another thing the author failed to mention is the way Saladin cleansed the city of Jerusalem with rose water when he captured it in 1187 in stark contrast to the crusaders upon their entry to the city in 1099 where they massacred thousands of the city's inhabitants to the extent that the blood flowed in the city. Its a minor detail i know but still its a nice thing to have mentioned. But all in all a great read.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A refreshing look at the crusades 27 Aug. 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
After years of popular literature and movies that romanticise the Templar Knights and the crusades in general, I wanted to get a more detailed look at the man who ended the era. Whereas most books about the crusades will briefly talk about Saladin, and most will acknowledge the fact that he often showed mercy when his enemy slaughtered their victims, few touch on the huge obstacles he had to overcome to even get in the position as the leader of Islam.

This book does a great job at describing a man who had to fight very hard to achieve greatness. But apart from charting his rise, it also exposes some of his weaknesses; Saladin like all of us wasn't perfect, and this biography doesn't attempt to hide it.

I have read several books on this era now, and while the many unfamiliar titles and names sometimes made it a little hard to follow (hardly the fault of the book!), I thoughroly enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone interested in the Crusades or the Middle East in general.
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44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent volume! 6 Jun. 2007
Saladin was without a doubt a most extraordinary man and a key character in the Muslim world in the late 1100's. So famous was he for his actions then, that now, several hundred years later, his achievement are legendary and he is still revered by thousands the world over!

This excellent and very readable volume written by a specialist in this period of world history cleverly provides the reader with a fascinating insight into the life and times of this most remarkable man and describes how, as a brilliant soldier and battlefield commander, he rose to power in an area that included Egytpt, Palestine and Syria.

The name Saladin often brings shivers down ones spine, however as this book proves, he was a chivalrous leader who also enjoyed a unequalled political skills and an enviable reputation for mercy after his conquests.

This well written volume includes some excellent black and white photographs and copies of period drawing, maps and paintings. There is a valuable notes section, a glossary of Arabic terms and a detailed bibliography, making it a valuable addition to any ancient history enthusiasts library.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It Brought Tears to My Eyes! 12 Oct. 2010
From the very first chapter in the book I was touched to the pit of my soul by this great man and his legacy to the point of near tears. Upon reading the final chapter about Saladin's death, my tears broke free despite my great efforts at the sad death of this extraordinary man and his life long wish to perform the Haj (pilgrimage to Mecca) but dying before that.

As for the book itself, I felt that if one wanted to get a brief insight as to who this extraordinary man was, one simply has to read the first and last chapters to realize that. The rest of the book details his ascendancy to power and his climatic legacy. The author uses both Islamic and European references to chronicle Saladin's legacy, as reassurance of accuracy, the author did quote Baha-Din Bin Shadad who was Saladin's biographer and most reliable source into his life (which buy the way is a somewhat difficult book to obtain due to the very high demand).

I must warn readers despite the author's great research into the subject and knowledge of Islam, there are some misconceptions and general mistakes when it comes to understanding and interpreting certain actions or teachings of Islam. The most notable of which is in the very first chapter where the author attributes Saladin's more than noble treatment of the captured Christians once he had captured Jerusalem. The author attributes his noble and benevolent generosity to his personal character and failed to realize that this was due to Saladin's strict observance of the rules of war dictated by Islam (a counter argument would naturally be that few others were as he was when they were the victors in war, true but just because some people don't follow the rules doesn't make the rules wrong, it simply means that certain people disregarded the rules).
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good book!
Published 2 months ago by Ms Indy Mair
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book
Published 2 months ago by andrew greenwood
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Amazing book, shows what true pious muslim leaders were like!
Published 4 months ago by Aleem
3.0 out of 5 stars If it is meant for a brief intro into saladins career then it is very...
An interesting read, but for me it is not detailed enough, glosses over important events after just mentioning them very briefly. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Hamzah
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read, truly revolutionary
A fantastic insight into a great and endearing man who's actions could be creditable as a lost quality of today amongst future leaders. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Michael
3.0 out of 5 stars A jumpy history
I found this book quite confusing. I struggled to keep track of the characters as the story jumped from one city to another. Read more
Published 13 months ago by DCheyside
5.0 out of 5 stars Islamic paragon.
If only the crusaders had been as honest in their dealings with the muslims,as Saladin was with the Christians,there might not be such a large middle-east problem. Read more
Published 14 months ago by dave erskine
5.0 out of 5 stars great reading
It shows how religion has a lot to answer for in the world ,more deaths in the name of religion than in all the wars the world, but to what end ,
Published 16 months ago by g bennett
4.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting
Very informative depicting the true character of Saladin. A legend of the past and a lover of his creator. A real hero.
Published 17 months ago by Mohammad Salman Hussain
5.0 out of 5 stars Great biography
My interests in the religious crusades jointly with my enthusiasm for biographies let me to this book. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Tybe R
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