Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Book Report: "Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World"

Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern WorldGenghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Jack Weatherford takes a fresh, sympathetic look at the greatest conqueror the world has ever known. His history argues that Genghis Khan's ruthless takeover of Eurasia planted the seeds for the interconnected global culture that began.

By preserving culture and promoting commerce, the Mongol Empire broke down barriers and set the stage for the global melting pot.

While not completely convincing, there are so many engaging details and such satisfying storytelling in vignettes that the book is captivating even when its reach exceeds its grasp.

Blending independent research along with the watershed translations of Khan's own Secret History, which is still being translated, broken down and debated, what emerges is as complete a portrait of the historical figure and his mentality and methods than could ever before have been crafted.

The Jonathan Davis narration drives the Audible version to greater heights. His enthusiasm for the material bleeds through in his storytelling.

Khan emerges as a clever tactician and man far ahead of his time, driven by ego but satiated by a yearning for justice and fairness. The book's most valuable purpose is to shed the centuries of systemic racism that have belittled and minimized the empire set in motion by Khan and his descendants. The book is a conqueror of hearts and minds in the manner of its subject.

Publisher provided review copy.

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