I'm currently behind on reviews, so don't be surprised if the recent reviews are a bit sparse.

God’s Philosophers

Cover of God's Philosophers.

This book came recommended by Seb Falk in the bibliography of The Light Ages, and it’s also on the reading list of /r/askHistorians, which I trust a lot. I found this book harder to like – who writes sentences like “when the barbarian tribes took over or destroyed the Roman infrastructure” in this century? It was long-winded and seemed to alternate between being jovial and trying for jokes, and going for a more professorial style. Not only the style was uneven: I also felt like the assumed prior knowledge fluctuated a lot, and was sometimes left out entirely, and then filled in with excrutiating care at other times.

The storytelling, such as it is, often jumps around, is light on citations and vague in a way that probably reflects the book’s intended readers, but that is certainly not necessary even when writing to a lay audience. I didn’t manage to finish the book. In its defense though, it does contain a lot of facts, and when I started writing my detailed notes, I got up to 1.5k words for about half of the part of the book that I read, until I decided that it wasn’t worth it after all.