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As an avid reader of history for over 40 years, I must say this is absolutely the most self indulgent nonsense I have ever come across. If you want to hear ridiculous references to everyone from MLK to Bessie Smith, and the obligatory swings at George W Bush, in a book that pretends to be about the Middle Ages, go ahead. If you want to learn how the Renaissance got it's start, look elsewhere.
The authors' over bloated prose, packed full of pseudo-intellectual double negatives reeks of an ego I have never seen or heard in any other historian's works. I tried as hard as I could to put up with the book; after 2 hours it was more than I could stand.
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What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
If Cahill had actually stuck to history instead of using history as an excuse to go on leftist rants.
What do you think your next listen will be?
If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Mysteries of the Middle Ages?
The work has nothing to do with "mysteries" but is largely a series of biographical vignettes. Cahill is a compelling author, but could not resist using this work as a platform for criticizing GW Bush and the 20th century Catholic Church. There is plenty there to criticize, but this was not the place for it. Cahill also profoundly misrepresents both Islam and Christianity, even though his first-person references often suggest he is (was ?) Catholic. His controlling interpretive lens of history (medieval and modern) is the tired progressive filter that long ago ran its course.The few worthwhile insights he offers are greatly outweighed by the deficiencies in this work.
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