Learn more Download now Browse your favorite restaurants Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle Learn More Shop now Learn more



on 28 April 2017
A great little novel! Maalouf has a playful surreal style that just fits this period of history so well. The prose mixes historical accounts with an interesting fictionalised narrative of real people. That said, I must say that the latter sections of the book failed to grip me as much as the first ones did.
0Comment| 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 15 April 2018
Mr. Maalouf's fiction, whether occurring in Tisfon or Samarqand or elsewhere reminds me solidly of Frank Herbert's "Dune" (original) in some nebulous but comforting manner. It's not difficult to find some immediate connections between subject matters, and to suggest any similarity between authors is in honest praise of both.
"Gardens of Light" by the same author is the better by half a bolt of silk, but there's not much between them.
Just superb.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 29 July 2015
A truly remarkable book. In this thoroughly researched work the author displays a stunningly profound understanding of Iran and its people. Weaving fact and fiction seamlessly together the early chapters provide a fascinating and convincing insight into life in 11th century Persia. The relationship between Omar Khayyam and his contemporary Hassan-i-Sabah, the founder of the Assassins is illuminating. The last part of the book is brilliantly thought out and presented. Covering the relatively recent history of Iran in the late 18th and early 19th centuries - the period of the so-called 'Great Game' between the UK and the Russians - it should be on the 'must read' list of any journalist or politician trying to grapple with the politics and intrigues of modern day Iran.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 4 May 2012
I have (had?) no interest in the history of Persia or Turkey, but was advised by a friend that this was a good book. This book is so good. I read the first three-quarters in two days, then delayed getting to the end for a month. Beautifully written, incisive, thought-provoking, I have resolved to read it again - an honour I give few books. Brilliant, a must-read if you're interested in people, places, lifestyles or love. And if you're not interested in any of those...
0Comment| 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 18 October 2014
An excellent read for any lover of Omar Khayyam verse. The book also gives a good look into certain aspects of Persian and Islamic complexities in the 11th and 12th centuries with the establishment of the Assassin cult.
The tongue in cheek narrative by the "author"( not Amin) about the original Khayyam document and his search and subsequent privileged viewing of it is an entertaining way of avoiding a dry historical script.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 4 February 2017
Absolutely magical, beautifully written, just wonderful. Perfectly captures the cultures and scenery and the language of Khayyam and his time.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 26 March 2018
It's as if the author has actually been there, so real!
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 3 March 2018
A truly informative book. The author is very well informed the result is an entertaining and educational experience. Very well done.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 8 May 2015
Everything as expected, Excellent choice, great purchase.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 12 September 2014
Phenomenal. Really, the best example of historical fiction you could ask for, and it covers so much. I was upset when the story transitioned from 11C Persia to the constitutional revolution period at the turn of the 20C, simply because I had been so immersed in world of Omar Kayyam Maalouf had created, but soon enough I was completely swept up in the second setting the book takes you too. What a way to learn about the world we live in.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse