Defenders of the Faith: Christianity and Islam Battle for the Soul of Europe, 1520-1536

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9780143117599: Defenders of the Faith: Christianity and Islam Battle for the Soul of Europe, 1520-1536

A bestselling historian recounts the epic clash that ended the Renaissance and pushed Islam to the gates of Vienna

In Warriors of God and Dogs of God, James Reston, Jr., brought two epochal events in the struggle between Islam and Christendom to readers eager to understand the roots of the present-day conflict. With his unwavering eye for detail, Reston now weaves a captivating narrative that examines a pivotal period in that centuries- long war, which found Europe at its most vulnerable and Islam on the attack. This saga of colliding worlds is propelled by two astonishing young sovereigns-the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V and the Turkish sultan Suleyman the Magnificent-and is supported by a wide range of larger-than-life characters, who lend this meticulously researched history a novel's worth of suspense and brio.

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About the Author:

James Reston, Jr., is the author of fourteen books, including Warriors of God, Dogs of God, Galileo: A Life, and The Conviction of Richard Nixon. His 1983 documentary, Father Cares: The Last of Jonestown, won the Prix Italia and the Dupont-Columbia Award. He lives in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

From Publishers Weekly:

In this vibrant piece of intellectual history, Reston completes the saga of the relationship between East and West he began with Warriors of God. Combining a historian's attention to detail and a novelist's narrative flair, Reston focuses on the period when the Ottoman Empire came within a hair's breadth of conquering Europe. The Sultan Suleyman swore to accomplish what his father and grandfather had not—conquer the Holy Roman Empire. Standing in his way was an equally ambitious leader, the young Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V. As Reston observes, each faced rebellion and fractiousness within his own empire. Although Charles defeated Suleyman at Güns, now in Hungary, the Turks had spread terror through Europe by moving farther into Christian lands than ever before. By examining this short but crucial span of years, Reston not only brings to life two Olympian figures who believed they were carrying out the will of God; he also offers a lucid window onto Renaissance Europe and the foundations of contemporary debates between the West and Islam. (May 18)
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