• In the Shadow of the Sword

  • The Battle for Global Empire and the End of the Ancient World
  • By: Tom Holland
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
  • Length: 17 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 06-04-12
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio UK
  • 4 out of 5 stars 4.2 (258 ratings)

Summary

In the 6th century AD, the Near East was divided between two venerable empires: the Persian and the Roman. A hundred years on and one had vanished forever, while the other seemed almost finished. Ruling in their place were the Arabs: an upheaval so profound that it spelt, in effect, the end of the ancient world. In The Shadow of the Sword, Tom Holland explores how this came about. Spanning from Constantinople to the Arabian desert, and starring some of the most remarkable rulers who ever lived, he tells a story vivid with drama, horror, and startling achievement.
©2012 Tom Holland (P)2012 Hachette Digital
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Critic reviews

"An unequivocal argument for the relevance of ancient history . . . Holland never strains for modern references; they are implicit in the stories he tells with such scholarship and flair.” (Geraldine Bedell, Observer)
“Brings this tumultuous, epoch-making period dazzlingly to life.” (William Napier, Independent on Sunday)
“Tom Holland has a rare eye for the detail, drama and the telling anecdote . . . A vibrant, bloodthirsty history, told with a rich sense of irony and irresistible narrative timing” (Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Telegraph)
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Regular price: £16.99

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By julien on 13-04-13

enlightening!

this book is a fascinating journey through the origins of Islam, and because the muslim sources are so few in regard of the actual birth of Islam, the author looks to the other civilizations surrounding it's cradle at the time to find clues as to what is true and what is fictional addition from later periods.



great narrator, thorough research. An intricate narrative that fits the complex cultural currents clashing at that time in that place.



highly recommend it!

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By T on 05-03-14

I didn't want it to end

Would you consider the audio edition of In the Shadow of the Sword to be better than the print version?

I've got the hardback copy too, which is a joy to read but because of the length of it and my busy schedule it got the audio version to help me along..

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, its long and demands all of your attention but its definitely worth it.

Any additional comments?

I've been a fan of Tom Holland for a while and this book has only cemented my admiration of his qualities as a historian and writer even further.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Barry on 22-09-12

Another great book from Tom Holland

What did you love best about In the Shadow of the Sword?

I've read and listened to four of Tom Holland's books, he has the ability to capture a lot of historical fact and put into a way of making it understandable.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Mr Oluwasegun Olatunde Bewaji on 20-07-18

Extremely Good, Informative and Eye Opening Read

An essential must read for anyone trying to truly understand today's geopolitics and social turmoil

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