lowest Warriors of God: Richard the Lionheart and Saladin new arrival in outlet online sale the Third Crusade outlet online sale

lowest Warriors of God: Richard the Lionheart and Saladin new arrival in outlet online sale the Third Crusade outlet online sale

lowest Warriors of God: Richard the Lionheart and Saladin new arrival in outlet online sale the Third Crusade outlet online sale

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The epic story of the battle for the Holy Land and the two larger-than-life figures at its center.

James Reston, Jr., the author of Galileo: A Life (called "masterful" and "brilliant" by the Washington Post) and the critically lauded The Last Apocalypse, a stunningly original portrait of the Christian world at the turn of first millennium, now re-creates the collision of the Christian holy wars and the Muslim jihad at the end of the twelfth century. A dual biography of the legendary Richard the Lionheart and the Sultan Saladin, iconic hero of the Islamic world , Warriors of God recounts the life of each man and reveals the passions of the times that brought them face-to-face in the final battle of the Third Crusade.

Richard the Lionheart, commonly depicted as the romantic personification of chivalry, here emerges in his full complexity and contradictions as Reston examines the dark side of Richard''s role as the leader of the blood-soaked Crusades and breaks new ground by openly discussing Richard''s homosexuality. Reston''s compelling portrait of Saladin brings to life the wise, highly cultured leader who realized an enduring Arab dream by uniting Egypt and Syria and whose conquest of Jerusalem not only sparked the Third Crusade but ignited the first jihad and turned Saladin into a hero of epic proportions. In riveting descriptions, Reston captures the fascinating clash of the two armies as they battled their way to the outskirts of Jerusalem. There, Saladin''s brilliant maneuvers and Richard''s sudden failure of nerve turned the tide. Sweeping readers into a mesmerizing period of history, Warriors of God is a provocative look at two towering leaders and the not always noble causes for which they fought.


Amazon.com Review

Throughout the medieval era, the Holy Land was a fiercely contested battlefield, fought over by huge Muslim and Christian armies, by zealots and assassins. The Third Crusade, spanning five years at the end of the 12th century, was, writes James Reston Jr. in this absorbing account, "Holy War at its most virulent," overseen by two great leaders, the Kurdish sultan Salah ad-Din, or Saladin, and the English king Richard, forevermore known as Lionheart.

Writing with a keen sense of historical detail and drama, Reston traces the complex path by which Saladin and Richard came to face each other on the field of battle. The Crusades, he observes, began "as a measure to redirect the energies of warring European barons from their bloody, local disputes into a ''noble'' quest to reclaim the Holy Land from the ''infidel''." Of the five Crusades over 200 years, only the first was successful, to the extent that the Christian armies were able to conquer their objective of Jerusalem. The Third Crusade, as Reston ably shows, was complicated by fierce rivalries among the Christian leaders, by a chain of military disasters that led to the destruction of an invading German army and its emperor, and by the dedication of an opposing Islamic army that shared both a goal and a language.

Saladin, Reston writes, was a brilliant leader and a merciful victor, but capable of costly errors; Richard was extraordinarily skilled at combat, but his lack of resolve cost him many battles, and, ultimately, Jerusalem. Richard returned to Europe, Saladin to Damascus. Neither leader has long to live, and the peace they made would soon be broken. James Reston''s splendid book does them both honor while examining a conflict that has never really ended. --Gregory McNamee

From Publishers Weekly

Chronicling the often inglorious exploits during the third crusade (1187-1192) of King Richard I of England and Saladin, the sultan of Egypt, Syria, Arabia and Mesopotamia, Reston''s panoramic narrative begins with the first crusade, launched by Pope Urban II in the last years of the 11th century. In the story''s unfolding, we are privy to a world peopled by a bevy of characters, compelling and repulsive: starving, horse-and-grass-eating Christian soldiers, who, in sturdier moments, cut down the enemy with something akin to religious relish; mighty Muslim swimmers, traversing ocean waters and trailing leather pouches heavy with money and messages; the seafaring ghost of St. Thomas of Canterbury, urging onward fearful and flagging crusaders; Christian and Muslim men who betray gleefully savage contempt for women of all confessions. Some passages lend this account the flavor of historical fiction, complete with the requisite romance: a purported sexual liaison between Richard the Lionheart and King Philip Augustus of France. This is, nonetheless, a worthwhile introduction for those eager to be swept along by an often lively narrative thick with disturbing and provocative details. The interweaving of Islamic perspectives with those of Christians is especially valuable. This frankly accessible work may capture the imagination of those who have thus far resisted the pull of crusade history, presenting, as it does, both the extraordinary and less well known participants for whom this peculiar drama was the stuff of everyday life.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Prolific author and journalist, Reston (The Last Apocalypse, Galilio: A Life) offers the reader a captivating story in a lucid and often humorous style. In the process, he highlights the perennial religious volatility of the Holy Land. From 1189 to 1192 it was the Christians and Muslims who slaughtered each other in the name of their respective gods. The Third Crusade led to a mighty collision between two legendary warriors. Leading the Christians was the tempestuous and pious killer Richard the Lionheart. Guiding the Muslims was the sagacious and devout Sultan Saladin. Reston uses these two powerful personalities to weave a spellbinding medieval tale of ruthless devastation and chivalrous compassion. His sympathies are with the sultan, as he takes a dim view of Richard''s "emotion quotient" he was definitely a king governed by sentiment. For a better appreciation of Richard''s skills as a 12th-century ruler, see John Gillingham''s Richard I (Yale Univ., 1999). Warriors of God is a fine example of narrative history and belongs in both academic and public libraries. Jim Doyle, Sara Hightower Regional Lib., Rome, GA
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Celebrated primarily as the romanticized figure in the legend of Robin Hood, Richard the Lionheart was indeed a flesh-and-blood ruler who led an army of crusaders against Sultan Saladin at the end of the twelfth century. In this superb dual biography, both Richard and Saladin are presented as complex, multidimensional leaders. Mythologized as a quixotic and chivalrous knight, Richard was actually a cunning and ferociously determined military strategist. Though vilified in the Christian world, Saladin, the sultan of Egypt, Syria, Arabia, and Mesopotamia, was renowned for his compassion and humility as well as his military genius. A vivid historical reassessment of the major players in the Third Crusade. Margaret Flanagan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

Praise for James Reston, Jr.''s The Last Apocalypse:

"Boldly written... Can the last millenium enlighten the next? Reston ... gives us the question dipped in blood."
-- Atlantic Journal-Constitution

"Reston weaves the poetry of the age; many of the book''s most pleasurable passages into his narrative... [A] vivid tale."
Business Week

"A vivid portrait... [Reston] has an eye for unforgettable detail."
Knight Ridder Newspaper

Praise for Galileo: A Life :

"It is to James Reston''s credit that his masterful new biography of Galileo Galilei manages to capture... the Renaissance as colorfully as it does, without making his subject seem too much like some time-traveling hero from a more sensible age... a brilliant biography."
--Bruno Maddox, Washington Post Book World

"A spirited evocation of Galileo''s charisma and capacity... fresh, sinewy, and altogether admirable."
-- Los Angeles Times Book Review

From the Inside Flap

The epic story of the battle for the Holy Land and the two larger-than-life figures at its center.

James Reston, Jr., the author of Galileo: A Life (called "masterful" and "brilliant" by the Washington Post) and the critically lauded The Last Apocalypse, a stunningly original portrait of the Christian world at the turn of first millennium, now re-creates the collision of the Christian holy wars and the Muslim jihad at the end of the twelfth century. A dual biography of the legendary Richard the Lionheart and the Sultan Saladin, iconic hero of the Islamic world , Warriors of God recounts the life of each man and reveals the passions of the times that brought them face-to-face in the final battle of the Third Crusade.

Richard the Lionheart, commonly depicted as the romantic personification of chivalry, here emerges in his full complexity and contradictions as Reston examines the dark side of Richard''s role as the leader of the blood-soaked Crusades and breaks new ground by openly discussing Richard''s homosexuality. Reston''s compelling portrait of Saladin brings to life the wise, highly cultured leader who realized an enduring Arab dream by uniting Egypt and Syria and whose conquest of Jerusalem not only sparked the Third Crusade but ignited the first jihad and turned Saladin into a hero of epic proportions. In riveting descriptions, Reston captures the fascinating clash of the two armies as they battled their way to the outskirts of Jerusalem. There, Saladin''s brilliant maneuvers and Richard''s sudden failure of nerve turned the tide. Sweeping readers into a mesmerizing period of history, Warriors of God is a provocative look at two towering leaders and the not always noble causes for which they fought.


From the Back Cover

Praise for James Reston, Jr.''s The Last Apocalypse:

"Boldly written... Can the last millenium enlighten the next? Reston ... gives us the question dipped in blood."
-- Atlantic Journal-Constitution

"Reston weaves the poetry of the age; many of the book''s most pleasurable passages into his narrative... [A] vivid tale."
Business Week

"A vivid portrait... [Reston] has an eye for unforgettable detail."
Knight Ridder Newspaper

Praise for Galileo: A Life :

"It is to James Reston''s credit that his masterful new biography of Galileo Galilei manages to capture... the Renaissance as colorfully as it does, without making his subject seem too much like some time-traveling hero from a more sensible age... a brilliant biography."
--Bruno Maddox, Washington Post Book World

"A spirited evocation of Galileo''s charisma and capacity... fresh, sinewy, and altogether admirable."
-- Los Angeles Times Book Review

About the Author

JAMES RESTON, JR., is the author eleven previous books, including The Last Apocalypse and Galileo: A Life. He has written articles for The New Yorker, Esquire, Vanity Fair, Time, Rolling Stone, and many other publications, and the scripts for three "Frontline" documentaries. He lives in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter One

A Sultan Is Born

Early in the twelfth century, in the city of Tovin in northern Armenia close to Georgia, there lived an eminent family of Kurds, the master of whose house was sur-named Najm ad-Din, which meant "excellent prince and star of religion." Najm ad-Din had a boon comrade named Bihruz, a man of intelligence and charm, qualities matched only by his bent for trouble. Bihruz had the misfortune to be discovered in a compromising position with the wife of the local emir, who promptly had Bihruz seized and castrated and banished from his fief.

After this humiliation Najm ad-Din decided to accompany his disgraced friend to Baghdad, the seat of the Abbasid caliphate, where the Caliph, Al Muqtafi li-amri''llah ("he who follows the orders of God"), reigned supreme over the Muslim world of the eastern Mediterranean. In Baghdad the Sultan of Iraq noticed their talents. Since eunuchs were then favored as teachers and administrators, Bihruz became the tutor of the Sultan''s sons and a companion to the Sultan himself in the games of chess and draughts. He rose quickly in power and influence and soon became responsible for building some of the great buildings of the land. In his rise to power Bihruz brought his friend, Najm ad-Din, along with him. Among the rewards the Sultan bestowed on Bihruz for his service was the castle at Takreet, on the Tigris River, and Bihruz in turn bestowed the command of it on his friend, Najm ad-Din.

At the castle in Takreet, Najm ad-Din was joined by his younger and more ambitious brother, named Shirkuh, and together these Kurds from the north seemed marked for greatness. For the Arab world had arrived at a critical juncture in its history. Forty years earlier, in the year a.d. 1098, Europeans had descended on Palestine, conquering Jerusalem in what the Franks called a crusade and establishing a powerful state called the Kingdom of Jerusalem, which stretched from Antioch in the north to Elath on the Red Sea. Along the coastline and in the mountains the foreigners built huge fortresses to protect their kingdom, and thus the Muslim world was fractured and invaded, beaten, and occupied.

In the year 532 (a.d. 1137 in the Christian calendar) a son named Yusuf was born to Najm ad-Din. In Arab lands this was an ambiguous name, which was associated with all the vicissitudes of the life of Joseph the Prophet, the low life as well as the high, the greed and falseness as well as the piety and truth. The circumstances of Yusuf''s birth seemed ominous as well. For on the very night that Yusuf was born, the child''s uncle, Shirkuh, had a dispute with the Isfahsalar, commander at the castle gate, after the officer had insulted a woman and she had come to Shirkuh in tears. In a rage Shirkuh snatched the halberd of the commander and killed him with his own weapon. When their powerful patron, the eunuch Bihruz, heard of this in Baghdad, he was appalled and banished the brothers from Takreet in disgrace. That so terrible an event accompanied the birth of Yusuf was considered a bad sign, but later it would be said, "Good may come of adversity when you least expect it. And such was the case with Yusuf." From Takreet the brothers went to Mosul in northern Mesopotamia.

In Mosul, in the face of the European occupation of Palestine, a strong Arab leader named Zengy had taken power and was making strides in uniting the far-flung domains of Islam, where Mesopotamia was traditionally divided from Syria, where Antioch fought with Aleppo, Tripoli with Homs, Jerusalem with Damascus, where the Sunni branch of Islam fought with the Shi''ite branch. In his quest to overcome the divisions of the Muslim world, Zengy called these Kurdish brothers to his service. Najm ad-Din became the commander of Zengy''s fortress in Baalbek in the Bek?a Valley, while Shirkuh became a powerful commander in the vizier''s armies.

In November 1144, Zengy''s forces captured Edessa in northern Mesopotamia, and thus the first of the fledgling Crusader provinces fell. The fall of Edessa was a shock to Europe. Largely through the eloquence of the Cistercian monk Bernard of Clairvaux, a campaign for a new Crusade began, and among the first to heed this call was the King of France, Louis VI, and his Queen, Eleanor of Aquitaine. In 1146, before the new Crusaders arrived in the Holy Land, Zengy died, and he was replaced by an even more powerful figure, Nur ad-Din. Two years later the Crusader forces were crushed outside the walls of Damascus, turning the Second Crusade into a total disaster and emboldening the forces of Islam further in their quest for the reconquest of Palestine.

The boy, Yusuf, grew up in Baalbek and Damascus. Though he was slight of build, his intelligence, his mannerliness, his generosity, his piety, and his modesty were noticed in the palaces of Damascus. Like a few others of his age, he was drawn to wine and women in his adolescence, but the seriousness of the historical situation eventually impressed him, and he renounced these temptations. Later it would be said that from the education of his sovereign, Nur ad-Din, Yusuf—later called Salah ad-Din or Saladin—learned to walk in the path of righteousness, to act virtuously, and to be zealous in waging war against infidels. In the court of Damascus the principle of striving in Allah''s cause was emphasized, and the youth took to heart this invocation in the Koran: "Those who strive in Our Cause, we will surely guide in Our way, for verily Allah is with those who do right."

In 1163 Nur ad-Din saw clearly the next step in the unification of the Arab world against the European occupation. In Egypt the Fatimite caliphate (which practiced the Shi''ite rather than the Sunni way of Islam) was in disarray, and this presented the lord of Syria with a target of opportunity. Nur ad-Din ordered Shirkuh, Saladin''s charismatic uncle, to undertake a succession of invasions to the south and ordered the young Saladin, now twenty-six years old, to accompany his uncle. Reluctantly, Saladin complied.

As Shirkuh and Saladin headed south, Nur ad-Din himself laid siege to the greatest of all the Crusader castles, Krak des Chevaliers, in central Syria, but the fortress was impregnable and the Muslim forces were turned back. The time was not yet ripe for a frontal assault on the Crusader kingdom.

In 1164, with Saladin in command of the vanguard of the army, Shirkuh conquered Cairo. But within weeks he was forced to withdraw when Crusader forces came to the aid of the Egyptian caliphate. Three years later a second invasion failed, again due to the support of the Crusaders, for above all else the Crusader kingdom could not abide a united Egypt and Syria. So desperate was this crisis considered in the Crusader kingdom that any baron refusing to heed the summons forfeited 10 percent of his income. Two further invasions faltered, until on January 8, 1169, in the fifth attempt, Shirkuh entered Cairo in triumph. Gloriously, he proclaimed himself to be the new King of Egypt—and then, abruptly, died two months later. Poison was suspected.

Pondering this reverse in Damascus, Nur ad-Din settled on Saladin as his uncle''s successor. The young soldier was chosen not because of his strengths but because of the perceived weaknesses of his youth and inexperience. In truth, Nur ad-Din did not want a powerful competitor in Cairo, and he was certain that he could control his malleable and polite ward. In this he would be disappointed.

At first Saladin was the compliant subordinate. Mercilessly, he followed Nur ad-Din''s orders to expunge the Shi''ite way of Islam in Egypt and replace it with the Sunni way. He requested of his lord that his father, Najm ad-Din, be allowed to come to Cairo. "My happiness will thus be complete," he wrote to his lord in Damascus, "and my adventure will be similar to that of Yusuf [Joseph] the faithful." Nur ad-Din granted the request. When Najm ad-Din arrived in the spring of 1170, his son greeted him with honors, even offering to resign and turn the command of Egypt over to his father. But his father replied, "O my son, God would not have chosen you to fill this post if you were not deserving of it. It is not right to change the object of Fortune''s favors." Two years later, while riding near the Gate of Victory, the Bab an-Nasr, Najm ad-Din was thrown from his horse and died.

Between 1169 and 1174, while successive Crusader attacks sought unsuccessfully to undermine the grip of Damascus on Egypt, Nur ad-Din and Saladin developed an increasingly tense relationship after Saladin balked at certain directives from Damascus. Finally, in early 1174, Nur ad-Din had had enough of this impudence and mustered an army to invade Saladin''s Egypt. But on May 15 of that year, as these preparations were under way, Nur ad-Din died. Absurdly, his power was handed to his eleven-year-old son.

A year later Saladin led an army out of Egypt and took control of Syria. He was proclaimed the Sultan of Syria and Egypt, and his vast empire now held the Crusader kingdom in its grip like a lobster claw.

Only because of the divisions among petty potentates, because of the feud between the Islamic sects of the Sunnis and the Shi''ites and between competing caliphates in Egypt and Syria and Turkey had the First Crusade succeeded. But gradually, with a slow inevitability that was almost providential, the Arab world consolidated its power in the face of the European occupation. The Arab recapture of Edessa had been the critical first step, and the failure of the Second Crusade gave the Islamic world confidence that it could drive the Christians into the sea. A succession of three strong Arab leaders advanced the union of the Arabs: the able Zengy who had recaptured Edessa and ruled until his death in 1147, the powerful Nur ad-Din who united all of Muslim Syria and Mesopotamia under Sunnism and subdued Egypt in 1169, and now Saladin.

When in 1175, at the age of thirty-eight, Saladin took power in both Damascus and Cairo, the centuries-old divisions evaporated...

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4.1 out of 54.1 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

Handymancan
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Mostly Opinion, Not Academic History.
Reviewed in the United States on February 13, 2020
This book has NO FOOTNOTES OR CITATIONS - IT IS NOT A LEGITIMATE ACADEMIC HISTORY. I was frustrated with the route this author took in this very promising book. I found the style extremely hard to read through. For instance, the forward to this book has more... See more
This book has NO FOOTNOTES OR CITATIONS - IT IS NOT A LEGITIMATE ACADEMIC HISTORY.

I was frustrated with the route this author took in this very promising book. I found the style extremely hard to read through. For instance, the forward to this book has more obvious bias than any academic study I''ve ever read of the Crusades. The author strongly promotes Saladin as well as Islam in general. He waxes poetic about the Koran, quoting it roughly three times more than the bible.

From the very first chapters the author insistently shapes the narrative of English / French troubles during this period as directly stemming from a homosexual relationship between Richard and Philip. This continues throughout the ENTIRE book, even unto the closing chapters, with not one single contemporary citation on the matter. In fact, this is the first author to ever actually put this forward as legitimate history yet he offers no historic backing. This in itself relieves the author of credibility.

My conclusion, after forcing myself to finish this book, is to look elsewhere if you want legitimate history of the era. This is more like a fiction with a splash of actual history every now and then. However, due to the complete lack of footnotes or citation the layman cannot know when the author departs from actual contemporary history and rambles on about various seemingly made up situations. Random quotes are splashed throughout the book with literally no insinuation as to who/when/where they were said. Will be skipping this authors work.

Not a historian.
14 people found this helpful
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Bathory1990
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Repeatativeness
Reviewed in the United States on June 8, 2019
Reston takes every opportunity to point out that he believes phillip and richard to have been lovers(no contemporary accounts of homosexuality)....This was covered in one of the earliest chapters of the book(the relationship the 2 had of very close friends early on).....He... See more
Reston takes every opportunity to point out that he believes phillip and richard to have been lovers(no contemporary accounts of homosexuality)....This was covered in one of the earliest chapters of the book(the relationship the 2 had of very close friends early on).....He should have left it at that in my opinion but instead all the way into the book when richard is in Sicily he is still referring to him as a Homosexual.....Its not a deal breaker for this book but it does get quite tiresome to keep hearing him repeat his opinion that richard is a homo sexual.....

Reston also seems to have quite a bias(at least in the first half) that is quite favorable to Saladin
8 people found this helpful
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Marn Valu
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Disappointed
Reviewed in the United States on December 27, 2020
I bought this book because I thought it would be a good reference for an essay I''m writing. Unfortunately, that was a mistake. The author does not cite any sources so I''m not sure where he is getting the information in this book. Then, he is almost fanatically biased, as... See more
I bought this book because I thought it would be a good reference for an essay I''m writing. Unfortunately, that was a mistake. The author does not cite any sources so I''m not sure where he is getting the information in this book. Then, he is almost fanatically biased, as if he is writing with religious fervor. He makes wild claims that he provides no evidence for (like Richard being a homosexual among others). I''m not sure how much of the book is the author''s opinion or made up by him. I also detect a dislike of Jewish people and Israel. The storytelling and descriptions by the author are actually pretty good. Maybe he should focus on fiction instead of historical books.
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Boyd
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A Captivating Account of the Lion and the Jaguar in the Third Crusade
Reviewed in the United States on August 10, 2019
This is an excellent chronicle of the struggle for control of Palestine by Christian Crusaders, led by King Richard the Lionheart, and Muslim Saracens, led by Sultan Saladin the Magnificent. It provides excellent insights into the characters of these two men, the biblical... See more
This is an excellent chronicle of the struggle for control of Palestine by Christian Crusaders, led by King Richard the Lionheart, and Muslim Saracens, led by Sultan Saladin the Magnificent. It provides excellent insights into the characters of these two men, the biblical and Koran scriptures that influenced their decisions, and the political and military factors that determined the outcome of the campaign to return the Holy Land to Christian control. It provides useful historical background and insights to today''s modern conflicts and issues concerning peace and conflict in the Middle East. It is a detailed, authoritative study. I highly recommend this book to anyone working in or studying the fields of history, political science, international relations, national security or foreign affairs.
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Amazon Customer
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Uninformative & Speculative
Reviewed in the United States on April 3, 2021
I was disappointed in this book. A lot of unsubstantiated speculative claims early on led me to distrust the text throughout. The author also seems to make sweeping presuppositions & assumptions as if they are a given without support. Perhaps this is partially my bad for... See more
I was disappointed in this book. A lot of unsubstantiated speculative claims early on led me to distrust the text throughout. The author also seems to make sweeping presuppositions & assumptions as if they are a given without support. Perhaps this is partially my bad for expecting a historical analysis of these influential leaders & not... this

I didn''t finish the book so who knows, maybe it ends up redeeming itself. Still wouldn''t recommend
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Nkeithf
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Amazing insights into the current world situation
Reviewed in the United States on November 26, 2001
I was unable to put this book down. I''ve always been something of a medieval history buff, and am very fond of works by authors like Alison Weir. To be honest, when I had read that parts of this text were "novelized," I was a bit concerned. I have to say, though,... See more
I was unable to put this book down. I''ve always been something of a medieval history buff, and am very fond of works by authors like Alison Weir. To be honest, when I had read that parts of this text were "novelized," I was a bit concerned. I have to say, though, that I found this book to be wonderfully well researched and above that, I found it to be a terrifically told tale.
I had just begun reading this book before the events of Sept. 11th, and as I delved further and further into the text in the days that followed, I realized to my amazement that it was like reading yesterday''s newspaper. So little has changed...we''re still fighting the same war, still reaping the bitter harvest of enmities played out over hundreds of years now. The cast of characters has not even changed that much... It was fascinating to read about the cult-like Assassins who would commit suicide at the command of their mysterious leader, and who were feared by both Muslims and Christians because of their terrorist attacks and their tendency to destabilize situations for their own ends--a la Bin Laden and al-Q''aeda.
The homosexual relationship between Richard and Philip Augustus is dealt with intelligently and sensitively, and the author makes a rather convincing case for the farreaching ramifications of their post-relationship bitterness.
The only thing I would fault the author for is a tendency to romanticize Saladin''s virtue and intelligence--almost to the point of rendering him as the sole "good guy" in the whole sorry mess... But the book is absolutely worth reading!
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Christopher B. Derrick
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
An exciting, informative look at Christianity''s Jihad
Reviewed in the United States on September 10, 2001
James Reston recalls a terrible, yet not unexpected blemish on Christianity''s past with vivid writing, excellent portrayls of the players, the politics and the battles that led up to the Western Europe''s first, and not last, self-serving conquest in the name of God and... See more
James Reston recalls a terrible, yet not unexpected blemish on Christianity''s past with vivid writing, excellent portrayls of the players, the politics and the battles that led up to the Western Europe''s first, and not last, self-serving conquest in the name of God and Christ.

Warriors of God shows the folly of man that has been created by Judeo-Christian religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) over a region supposedly holy to all. The Unbelievers (as Richard the Lion Hearted and his troops called the Arab armies) against the Infidels (as Saladin and his soliders referred to the Christian knights) is intriguing series of battles and machinations with much in-fighting amongst the Christian Knights, as they battled for the Kingdom of Jerusalem in the latter years of the 12th Century. The facts alone are compelling enough, but Reston brings us to the front lines in a most engaging way informing us on such interesting bits of information as Richard''s homosexuality, the etymology of the word "assassin" and the desires of Saladin to unite the Arab kingdom from Cairo to Damascus (which President Gabel Nassar of Egypt also attempted in the 1960s... so the dream burned for a long time).

It''s well worth reading, considering all the source material is 900 years old and the actual details of the battles must have come from propaganda spewing minstrels at the time.
18 people found this helpful
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Roberto Hernandez
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
For fans or first timers to crusade history
Reviewed in the United States on March 11, 2018
One of the most colorful retellings of the third crusade!
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Top reviews from other countries

Jean V Yates
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Research book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 23, 2018
Excellent record of Third Crusade. Well researched.
Excellent record of Third Crusade. Well researched.
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Mid sussex
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 12, 2015
Good book.
Good book.
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T Khan
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Three Stars
Reviewed in Canada on December 12, 2015
not completely impartial but still a solid work effort. the historical efforts of the author are wonderful and present a very clear and concise detail of each character. I would definitely recommend this book to history buffs.
not completely impartial but still a solid work effort. the historical efforts of the author are wonderful and present a very clear and concise detail of each character.

I would definitely recommend this book to history buffs.
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Boyd Hone
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Warriors of God
Reviewed in France on January 28, 2012
If I''ve chosen to comment on two books about Richard I, Frank McLynn''s RICHARD AND JOHN (2007) and James Reston''s WARRIORS OF GOD (2001), it''s due to their contrasted opinion concerning his sexuality. Reston claims that Richard was gay (and even, at the end of one...See more
If I''ve chosen to comment on two books about Richard I, Frank McLynn''s RICHARD AND JOHN (2007) and James Reston''s WARRIORS OF GOD (2001), it''s due to their contrasted opinion concerning his sexuality. Reston claims that Richard was gay (and even, at the end of one paragraph, has him and the French king Philip Augustus riding ''''off into the sunset.'''') while McLynn labels such nonsense as ''''a persistent canard.'''' The only position possible certainty lies with Gillingham and his RICHARD (1978) in which he states that such talk is ''''a highly coloured assertion which cannot be substantiated.'''' Medieval men did share the same bed (as is incontestably the case with Richard and Philip), perhaps, however, as virtuously as Abe Lincoln did with his friend Joshua Speed. (Although it''s true, too, that philip, years younger than Richard, lithe and pretty, would have been the perfect bottom to the handsome, viral Englishman.) Richard knew no fear. Seeing him in acts of valor, at the head of his men, Saladin proclaimed him to be a courageous fool, a foolishness that killed him: During the seizure of a castle he took an arrow while showing off to his men. He had the inhabitants of the castle murdered, all except for the boy who had shot him, whom he freed, according to Reston, with a bourse of 100 shillings. McLynn claims that the boy may have been, later, inhumanly tortured and then flayed alive. A secondary player, Sinan, is the head of a hashish cult called the Assassins, an organization capable of doing, in real life, what the godfather had done, in film fiction with the horse''s head. Both Richard and Saladin were so terrified of him that they did everything in their power to placate the old man.Two wonderful books, well written, covering complicated people and complicated times with the clarity of a mountain stream.
If I''ve chosen to comment on two books about Richard I, Frank McLynn''s RICHARD AND JOHN (2007) and James Reston''s WARRIORS OF GOD (2001), it''s due to their contrasted opinion concerning his sexuality. Reston claims that Richard was gay (and even, at the end of one paragraph, has him and the French king Philip Augustus riding ''''off into the sunset.'''') while McLynn labels such nonsense as ''''a persistent canard.'''' The only position possible certainty lies with Gillingham and his RICHARD (1978) in which he states that such talk is ''''a highly coloured assertion which cannot be substantiated.'''' Medieval men did share the same bed (as is incontestably the case with Richard and Philip), perhaps, however, as virtuously as Abe Lincoln did with his friend Joshua Speed. (Although it''s true, too, that philip, years younger than Richard, lithe and pretty, would have been the perfect bottom to the handsome, viral Englishman.) Richard knew no fear. Seeing him in acts of valor, at the head of his men, Saladin proclaimed him to be a courageous fool, a foolishness that killed him: During the seizure of a castle he took an arrow while showing off to his men. He had the inhabitants of the castle murdered, all except for the boy who had shot him, whom he freed, according to Reston, with a bourse of 100 shillings. McLynn claims that the boy may have been, later, inhumanly tortured and then flayed alive. A secondary player, Sinan, is the head of a hashish cult called the Assassins, an organization capable of doing, in real life, what the godfather had done, in film fiction with the horse''s head. Both Richard and Saladin were so terrified of him that they did everything in their power to placate the old man.Two wonderful books, well written, covering complicated people and complicated times with the clarity of a mountain stream.
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Reviewed in Italy on September 14, 2014
appassionante resoconto della storia dei due grandi guerrieri del XII secolo e della loro rivalità/ammirazione reciproca. ottimo lavoro bibliografico con riferimenti a fonti sia occidentali che orientali.
appassionante resoconto della storia dei due grandi guerrieri del XII secolo e della loro rivalità/ammirazione reciproca. ottimo lavoro bibliografico con riferimenti a fonti sia occidentali che orientali.
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