Book Review: Islam

Islam, by Azra Kidwai

I’m not sure where I got this book, but I decided to finally look through it.  It is basically a nice coffee table book with many great photos and images.  It provides a loose overview of Islamic development beginning with the Arabian peninsula in pre-Islamic time.  It then moves on to discuss various aspects of Islamic religion and culture.  While the book begins in a way that is readable even by the non-historian, it quickly bogs down in terms and names that will overwhelm most readers.

The strength of the book is the photos.  Every page has one or more beautiful photos of people, places, and things associated with Islam.  The book is pro-Islam, so if you’re expecting an objective or balanced treatment of the topic you won’t find it here.  At best, this book might stimulate you to find better, more authoritative resources on Islamic history and culture.  At worst, this book will continue to look nice on your coffee table or in your bookshelf.

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