Learn, understand, then decide whether you accept or reject.
Everything from the rise of the Prophet until right before World War II are excellent gems. The final third of the book feels too confusing and full of inaccuracies.
Conservative Catholic Curmudgeon
While the book is useful for a better understanding of how history looks from the perspective of the Muslim world, Ansary repeatedly demonstrates a shallow understanding of Christianity. His angle on Christian beliefs makes me wonder whether he has ever consulted primary sources on Christianity, rather than secularist caricatures.
I've read a lot of history. (Fiction and "summer reading" too.) Along the way I've been exposed to the "story" of Western Civilization many times. Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Crusades, Ages (many), Wars (Too Many), kings and queens and tsars and Popes and dictators and Vikings, and voyages of discovery. Et al. Etc. Yada Yada.
What I missed out on was a basic survey of the past two thousand years from a non-western perspective. Ansary offers the basic survey course of what he calls the Middle World and the course of Islam I needed. And didn't know I needed. [Although I've read a fair number of books by non-westerners.]
Ansary reads his own work. In this case it works quite well. He adds the emotion, the emphasis, that only an author can provide. His voice is pleasant to listen to, too.
My wife, with a science backgrounds, found Destiny Disrupted as essential, as beneficial, as I did.
History, Historical Fiction, Science Fiction, Fantasy
Concise and excellent understanding of Islam's role in History. Moves along at a steady clip and uncovers many excellent starting points for further study. Essential perspective for gaining a foothold to understand the Islamic yawning dismissal and now "cornered cat " hatred of the West.
Tell us about yourself!I am an avid reader but enjoy listening while waking to work, ironing, doing dishes, etc. Listening to novels is an entirely different experience than reading; a well narrated story is a cross between drama and written fiction. Listening to books on Audible has been a wonderful experience.
Yes--An informative well-researched and accessible (for non historians) review of Islam past and present
Humor and irony are present in his cadence, timing, and emphasis.
This is a brilliant and balanced elucidation of Islamic history in an accessible and easy to comprehend style with copious connections to European history that most of us understand a little better.
It's a good book!
The description of Muhammad's life was particularly detailed and engaging.
This is a "folk history", intended not to be historically accurate, but rather to describe the general Muslim narrative of history. It's a very innovative idea.
The author worked for a publisher of high school history textbooks and it shows. He has laid out the Islamic world's historical perspective in a neat, lively and easily digestible format. Great listen for someone, like me, with little background knowledge of the Islamic world.
I only listened to Audio version and enjoyed it very much
He was great. I lked listening to him . I do not see how anyone could have done it better.
This is a great book and should be read by all those who are interested in World Hostory. The historical facts mentioned by the authour are not taught at history classes in the West.
This book covers Islamic history but excludes some important islamic countries/events:
Indonesia- ( largest Muslim country in the world )
Moores in Spain ( mentioned very briefly )
Likes audio books
Destiny (for short) tells great stories. And it is read by the author, so you get all of the pronunciations, and inflections, and emotional meanings that he intends.
He was born in “the mid-east”, so he knows that religion, that culture, and that history. But he’s lived in The States for decades so he knows American and European history, culture, and religion too. As he tells the history, the reader realizes that tragedy, cruelty, and stupidity happen in both cultures. Genius, compassion, and triumph, too.
Destiny is easily accessible to me as an American white guy. His humor, his language, and his writing, are all easy for me to understand. If we can understand one another then, hopefully, with understanding, will come peace.
I loaned Destiny to my neighbor, an older guy who had Catholic school all the way. He would not give the book back to me until he had listened to it three times. So either the book is really interesting, or my neighbor’s Alzheimers’ is getting worse -- and he just listens again and again without remembering.
I guess I mostly liked the book because I feel better equipped to make peace and prosperity with the Billion people who hail from these traditions. I still feel proud of the remarkable things that America has done, since its founding, to create human liberty. I think that the author would agree. But, reading Destiny we get to walk in the shoes of some people from the Mid-east, and consider what Americans would do differently, if we could do it over again. And maybe know better what we should do today and tomorrow.