In 1521, Suleiman the Magnificent, Muslim ruler of the Ottoman Empire at
the height of its power, dispatched an invasion fleet to the Christian
island of Rhodes. This would prove to be the opening shot in an epic
struggle between rival empires and faiths for control of the
Mediterranean and the center of the world.
In Empires of the Sea, acclaimed
historian Roger Crowley has written his most mesmerizing work to date–a
thrilling account of this brutal decades-long battle between
Christendom and Islam for the soul of Europe, a fast-paced tale of
spiraling intensity that ranges from Istanbul to the Gates of Gibraltar
and features a cast of extraordinary characters. This struggle’s brutal
climax came between 1565 and 1571, seven years that witnessed a fight to
the finish decided in a series of bloody set pieces: the epic siege of
Malta, the savage battle for Cyprus, and the apocalyptic
last-ditch defense of southern Europe at Lepanto. Lepanto
fixed the frontiers of the Mediterranean world that we know today.
Crowley conjures up a wild cast of pirates, crusaders, and religious
warriors struggling for supremacy and survival in a tale of slavery and
galley warfare, desperate bravery and utter brutality, technology and
Inca gold. Empires of the Sea is page-turning narrative history
at its best—a story of extraordinary color and incident, rich in detail,
full of surprises, and backed by a wealth of eyewitness accounts. It
provides a crucial context for our own clash of civilizations. Download and start listening now!