I initially liked this book lots and told almost everyone I knew about it. I would go over and reread much of it because I truly was very interested with finally someone recognising the other side to the story!!!. I (being a practicing Muslim) liked that it wasn't a western secular book on Islamic history, but it wasn't a religious Islamic book on Islamic history - but was somewhere very neutral. Almost too neutral and a tad vague - especially towards the end. Which did end up being my only criticism.
I enjoyed the social aspect and considerations to why certain political situations arose. It wasn't about one bad leader vs another. It was more about ideas of people being incompatible. This also was frustrating at times as it was almost too passive and never pointed the finger squarely at anyone - so nothing was really anyone's fault - from this authors prospective. Where as I can draw my own conclusions of where blame lies, this book leaves that mostly blank.
The author's work was well written, and their style was really nice to read. Like a conversation one would have if the history of Islam was being discussed over dinner.
It made it more human not just dates and names. Relate-able.
But at the same time some dates were kind of vague. But the book was extremely informative, it's just one would have to double check and research the info in another source to get the true guts of it. But I don't think that's the point of this book. It's not a reference book of facts, it's the story of the clashing of western and Islamic narratives and idea. It does that job brilliantly.
For any non Muslim, I highly recommend the book. It's a starting point to understand important things of why things are the way they are. I do think not many non Muslims would have the patience to read it though. For highly practicing Muslims, the book will frustrate in terms of it's vagueness and wishy-washy fundamental tawheed dusting over (which I hated!). It needed to be more potent and precise but I don't think that is the author's thing. It totally skims over the usa's blame for anything. And it alludes to bin laden being responsible for 9/11 - which is debatable and contentious.
I do recommend the book but from about 80% it just goes too fast and dusts over the details and dates, and then abruptly ends with an "afterward" which doesn't conclude much. So the end to destiny disrupted was mostly a destiny disrupted... Could have ended with more gusto rather than shoulder shrugging and "I don't know's".
There are lots of sad points in the book from a Muslim prospective, but lots of eye opening points from either prospective.
And ultimately this is just my point of view on a particular authors point of view on history.
- Paperback: 416 pages
- Publisher: INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US; 1 edition (27 April 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1586488139
- ISBN-13: 978-1586488130
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 3.2 x 21 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 340 g
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,840 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)