In 1839, after decades of conflict, the Russian army and the Muslims of Chechnya are on the verge of a truce. To prove his commitment to peace, warrior chief Imam Shamil offers a hostage: his son, Jamal Eddin. But once the truce is signed, the Russians spirit Jamal Eddin back to Russia, where Czar Nicholas “adopts” the boy.
Immersed in imperial court life, Jamal Eddin matures into the consummate courtier. Still, he maintains his Muslim faith - until he falls in love with a beautiful Russian aristocrat. To marry her, Jamal Eddin must convert to Christianity, a sacrifice he is prepared to make. But his devotion to his bride will be pitted against his duty to his homeland when Jamal Eddin is called to take his rightful place leading the Muslims.
Based on a true story, this sweeping historical novel chronicles the coming-of-age of a young man torn by impossible choices wrought by love and conflicting loyalties.
©2012 Alexandra Lapierre (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
This book brought my attention to an area of history that I was unaware of before.
Anticlimactic, but then it was based on reality, so a Hollywood ending wasn't expected.
I gave up on this book about 3 hours into it. I tried to hang in there, hoping it would improve, but it seemed to be just one religious "rant" after another with respect to Allah. It just never ended and not being a religious fanatic, it definitely did not appeal to me... left me with a headache before finally deleting this. The idea is very interesting, but it just bogs down in too much religious dialog, praising Allah and praying constantly. Pity. Just as something starts to happen and you hope it might progress, it goes backwards again.
Too much religious "rant" and doesn't progress.
Yes, he did a good job with the very poor material he had to work with.
Total disappointment....bored with the endless religious rant.
I would not recommend this book to anyone I know. It's the first audiobook I've purchased that I actually deleted from my listening device.
Keep a notebook by your listening device for this one. I got so lost in the odd names and the convoluted histories that it became a chore to listen. So I gave up by the 6th chapter. Be warned: lots of details, and many characters, unlikeable as well.
I know this book got great reviews but I just couldn't get into it. It was a slog to get into and after about 5 hours I just had to give up. The narrator is fine but I found the story not the least bit interesting.
The narrator's inflection.
Jamal Eddin witnessing his grandmother's beating and trying to make sense of it.
Pronounciation of words unfamiliar to me.
Imal Shamil, to understand why his holy war was more important than his son.
Thought this might be a romance novel, very glad it was not.
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