- Audio Download
- Listening Length: 17 hours and 50 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Hachette Audio UK
- Audible.co.uk Release Date: 6 April 2012
- Language: English
- ASIN: B007RZ8J3G
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
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In the Shadow of the Sword: The Battle for Global Empire and the End of the Ancient World Audiobook – Unabridged
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Top customer reviews
This is no ordinary subject matter, though. Anyone who comes close to scrutinising Islam is brave, as we know. He sets things up on the subject in early passages really well, and then goes back to the history of the two great empires - Rome and Persia - and their rich religious tapestries prior to Islam, so that we can get a good idea of their own religious struggles and dynamics, where they came from, and how they came about, before charting the Arab conquest. I had already read a fair amount about Islam, but this book added a very rich background history of the roots of Islam and the influences upon it from contact with religions in the Roman and Persian empires.
I couldn't help wondering, though, whether the author was holding back on some things, like tying up material and expressing what he thinks are the conclusions about the formation of Islam and the implications. Some treading on eggshells perhaps, which lots of people tend to experience.
I also found it very hard to relate where each of the several hundred (thousand?) little episodes fitted into the overall timeline and geography. This could easily be overcome with a bit more "signposting" work on the part of author and editor.
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