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  • Crusaders

  • An Epic History of the Wars for the Holy Lands
  • By: Dan Jones
  • Narrated by: Dan Jones
  • Length: 16 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History, Europe
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (489 ratings)

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Summary

Dan Jones, best-selling chronicler of the Middle Ages, turns his attention to the history of the Crusades - the sequence of religious wars fought between the late 11th century and late medieval periods, in which armies from European Christian states attempted to wrest the Holy Land from Islamic rule, and which have left an enduring imprint on relations between the Muslim world and the West. 

From the preaching of the First Crusade by Pope Urban II in 1095 to the loss of the last crusader outpost in the Levant in 1302-03, and from the taking of Jerusalem from the Fatimids in 1099 to the fall of Acre to the Mamluks in 1291, Crusaders tells a tale soaked in Islamic, Christian and Jewish blood, peopled by extraordinary characters, and characterised by both low ambition and high principle. 

Dan Jones is a master of popular narrative history, with the priceless ability to write page-turning narrative history underpinned by authoritative scholarship. Never before has the era of the Crusades been depicted in such bright and striking colours, or their story told with such gusto.

©2019 Dan Jones (P)2019 Head of Zeus

What listeners say about Crusaders

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Excellent

Enjoyable, a little light on detail (I had hoped for a more in depth history) but a good overview, let down by the authors excreceable decision to use "Byzantine" at every agonising, jarring moment. NO. WRONG. GERMAN PROPAGANDA. Romans. The people of the Eastern Roman Empire were Romans. Their Emperors were Roman Emperors. Their government was the Roman state, their lands, Romania (or Roman territory).

19 people found this helpful

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Not as advertised

Disappointing but only because, having read the blurb and heard the author on a podcast, I thought this would be a deep dive into the personal experiences of several individuals during the crusades. But it's not. It is a very good, well read history that, arguably, spends a bit more time on individuals but not in any meaningful way.

17 people found this helpful

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Very In depth

Very clearly narrated. Very in depth and informative.
Especially liked the end section. . .

6 people found this helpful

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Entertaining and instructive

My daughter is studying the Crusades so I thought it would be helpful to gen up. I wanted a readable account of this period and I identified 'Crusaders: An Epic History Of The Wars For The Holy Lands'. This is the first book I have read by Dan Jones, but not the last.

I was ignorant about much of what had taken place during nearly 200 years of very bloody history - and what a fascinating period it is. 'Crusaders: An Epic History Of The Wars For The Holy Lands' provides a perfect whistlestop tour and is also, somewhat suprisingly, quite the page turner.

From Pope Urban's initial call to defend Christians in Constantinople, I was amazed to discover how broad the geographical and religious definition became of what constituted a crusade. Anyone could purge their sins by spilling the blood of anyone identified as others, even fellow Christians or those not paying their tithes.

'Crusaders: An Epic History Of The Wars For The Holy Lands' is clearly impeccably researched and yet the scholarship does not slow down a thoroughly entertaining account peopled by colourful historical characters of all genders and faiths.

4 people found this helpful

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Tricky subject well covered

There are so many intricacies in the story of the crusaders that it is hard to keep up with the twists and turns, but Dan Jones does a terrific job of keeping it all in place....... Although I found it a bit ponderous and confusing at times, I was able to finally understand what the crusades were, and how they influence our current world events....... This is a very well written insight into the Christian crusades and Holy wars.....

2 people found this helpful

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Crusaders, the real story.

A very comprehensive account of what the name Crusaders really means. Puts to bed a lot of common myths around the subject by providing a very detailed picture of the subject, and puts it into context with today's commonly held popular beliefs.

2 people found this helpful

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Excellent history

Fantastic summary of the Crusades. Dan Jones is one of our best medieval historians. 10\10

5 people found this helpful

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living the Crusades

This is a very detailed description of the Crusades and gives you an insight into the very nature of the people who took leading roles in them. It also includes the attitudes of the people today and the impact it still has on their perception of the people of both east and west.

1 person found this helpful

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Dissapointed

I struggled to finish this as I found the narrative a bit wishy washy and the narrator's voice kept sending me to sleep. shame because it's an interesting topic.

1 person found this helpful

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How an audiobook adaptation should be done.

In this tome, Jones has honed his mastery of engaging anecdotes and balanced analysis to produce a comprehensive chronology of the Crusades which can proudly stand alongside the works of Runciman and Riley-Smith in the pantheon.

This is complemented by his own strong narration which he handles with aplomb.

Great work.