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4.7 out of 5 stars
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4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 7 December 2010
Never getting enough time to contemplate on the meaning of the Holy Book, the Quran? Then this book takes you through its themes that are immediately relevant to you. What I liked most about this book is that it presents its discussion and arguments in a no nonsense manner. I particularly liked the discussions about how different translators have understood the meaning of the Quran. I didn't appreciate the difficulty in translating the Quran till I read this book and it's helped. I hope this review is useful to you.
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on 10 May 2011
I bought this book alongside the author's translation of the Quran and it has been very helpful to gain a better understanding of the major themes in the Quran. The book highlights key themes in the Quran and explains their relevance. There is a lot of focus on the language styles used in the Quran which can be a bit hard to follow but don't let that put you off, particularly if you have no prior knowledge of Arabic, because this is an important feature of the Quran. Common translation or interpretation errors that have occurred in the past are explained and the author gives examples of these too. I found the book very interesting and would highly recommend it for those who wish to understand the Quran better.
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on 28 May 2012
This is a thoughtful and well written reflection on parts of the Qur'an with the author clearly a "man of the faith". The book is accessible to non-muslims as time is taken to explain concepts and indeed aspects of the Qur'an and the faith. The first chapter provides an overview of the text and its place in muslim life. There then follows a series of analyses of certain passages or themes: "Al-fatiha" with an interesting comparison with the Christian "Lord's prayer", then a review of how water features and so on.

Worth reading and I suspect (re-reading) for anyone who wishes to understand more about the holy book for those of the muslim faith.
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on 15 August 2014
I am not a Muslim, but I have always been interested in and fascinated by Islam.
This book offers a fantastic introduction to the Holy Book, dispelling false myths and incorrect past interpretations. I find this element especially important given the current political issues - this makes it an important book for everybody.
I also appreciated the many parallels between Christian and Quranic scriptures when it comes to events/people registered in both- it was actually quite moving to see who many things there are in common, despite the different religious outlook.
A fantastic experience.
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on 11 April 2014
It's simply written yet the ideas are equally as challenging, but your never left on your own, the explanations are beautiful.. it's gripping and has really changed my opinion about some texts. Extremely positive and enlightening view of the Kuran. I know how to read Arabic, yet do not understand, this has given me a lovely intro to the complicated suras
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on 17 December 2013
M.A Haleem is a great scholar and unbiased theologian who opens the world of Islam to everyone. Particularly those who have had a negative experience through the media's global representation of Islam over the past 20 odd years...This should be read by anyone even remotely inquisitive in Islam (including other scholars and imams at mosques) as it deals with the most controversial themes that the popular media and heretics, within Islam and who claim knowledge of Islam, seem to wrongly have consensus on through out the world.
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on 19 September 2014
In this book Muhammad Abdel Haleem gives fascinating insights into the issues he faced in the writing of his recent new translation of the Quran from Arabic into English. As such, it makes for a very interesting read both for Muslims and for linguists of all faith backgrounds and none.
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on 12 April 2011
I particularly liked the discussion on the story of adam, the logical argument in The Quran, and the analysis of the alleged wife-beating verse, although this part was not as comprehensive as the book "Wife Beating in Islam? The Quran Strikes Back!".
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on 12 July 2015
As a student of knowledge, and one who is interested in learning about world theologies, I recently read the Holy Qur'an from beginning to end, to discover for myself what it contained, its style of writing, its story-arch and meaning, and what it really teaches. It was a satisfying experience, particularly when the translation from Arabic to English was delivered in such an exquisite way. Obviously I am aware that many Muslims will state that the original Arabic cannot be adequately rendered into any other language due to its unique ability to convey many meanings in one sentence, but, in my humble opinion, I think that Muhammed Abdel Haleem has produced a contemporary translation of the Qur'an that is both enjoyable to read, and easy to comprehend. Thus.......purchasing this book, 'Understanding the Qur'an: Themes and Style' I felt was the next, natural progression, and I was not disappointed. In fact, I would recommend that all persons out there that are wishing to read the Holy Qur'an for the first time, much like myself, will find this book to be a natural companion in regards to further explaining the background, overview, and stylistic writing style that is evident throughout the Qur'an itself. My only caution would be this: without firstly reading the Qur'an itself, one might be a little unappreciative of what this book is trying to convey to the reader, as I would say that this publication lends itself more to the description of, 'companion' rather than, 'stand-alone' in a description of its purpose. Otherwise, an excellent purchase, written with the same fluent, easy-to-understand style, that I found in the footnotes that M. A. Haleem has included in his translation of the Qur'an, recommended, if your interest in world faiths has led you in this direction.
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on 12 April 2014
I bought this book because it was written by the translator of the Qur'an( One of the best renderings in modern English.)
I want to learn what the author of this book has to teach
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