Ibn Battuta

Ibn Battuta by L.P. Harvey

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I just finished this book and am really pleased with it as a whole.

It is about 115 pages long so is a condensed version of Ibn Battuta’s own account of his travels. This was perfect for me as I was curious about what he had achieved but didn’t think I could read a very long work on it, maybe in the future.

This book was very easy to read and a great way of summarising his travels without feeling like too much was left out.

People give this book bad ratings because in some parts the Author questions the credibility of Ibn Battuta in his writing. In my opinion, both the anger and the questioning by the Author are understandable.

There is no doubt that Ibn Battuta had an epic journey across different continents and across thousands of miles. What there is discussion about are the details of his journey, what he saw himself and what he heard from others.

Some criticisms may be seen as valid, but I did count a handful of times where the Author seemed a bit snarky on illustrating these criticisms. This was rare however and the book is generally objective in nature.

If you are expecting a book full of blind praise and awe for Ibn Battuta, this book is probably not for you. If you are interested in the man and his travels, this is GREAT as a short read to get you up to speed without feeling left out.

The latter third of the book goes on to mention particulars about Ibn Battuta and his travels, such as the women he married and his children, how he must have financed his travels and the animals he is reported to have seen.

I would personally recommend this book, very engaging read.

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