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Awesome story that is not covered in the average History class in school. Doesn't take sides and presents the good and bad of both conquered and conquerer. Reader was engaging and since he had excellent material to work with the overall rating is very high.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful
This is a story only vaguely known of in the West, and largely through the residual traces of Portuguese rule in places like Malacca, Goa and Mombassa.
A complex period of history is summarized clearly but without oversimplification, and like all of Crowley's books reads like a good novel. What is most admirable is his ability to imagine himself in the moment and to avoid the easy judgments of liberal 21st century anti-colonialist outrage. What the Portuguese did was outrageous by any modern yardstick, but Crowley allows the story to tell itself and for the reader to understand the actions of those conquerors, and of their enemies, with reference to the morality of that distant time.
A tremendous achievement; a great read.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful