Those of us who were raised and educated in the west heard only one side of the story of the Crusades. As we heard it, the valiant knights of Christendom set off to rescue the Holy Land, Jerusalem in particular, from the hands of the Arabs. This book tells “the rest of the story,” as Paul Harvey used to say. This is the story of the invasion of their lands by European knights and soldiers who were after more than just Jerusalem. There was violence on both sides, as well as brutality, broken oaths and other dastardly deeds. We also learn of the history of the original assassins, a short history of carrier pigeons, and comparisons of Arab and Western medicine and science. There will be much to discuss.
Please note that we are meeting this month on the second Tuesday, and that will probably continue at least until the end of May. Also be sure that you are heading for the correct Takoma Library – the one in DC, NOT the one in Maryland. The DC library is much closer to the Red Line Metro station – only two blocks. If you are driving, there is street parking around the library and several people at our December book club had no trouble finding a spot.
After the discussion, there are a number of restaurants in downtown Takoma Park and we can enjoy a meal after our discussion (sorry, drinks are allowed in the meeting room, but no food).