"...highly recommended for both non-specialists as well as specialists in Islam. It reflects existing scholarship on this issue and complements it. It should, therefore, prove very useful for those interested in understanding the rich authentic legacy of classical Islam with its contemporary implications for the contemporary Muslim as well as non-Muslim world." - Canadian Journal of History
"Cook ambitiously seeks to provide a broad vision of martyrdom and its meaning and the practice in the Islamic tradition, combining historical analysis, global coverage ranging from Africa to Southeast Asia, and a thematic approach ot the definition of the martyr in the Sunni, Shia, and Sufi traditions in order to locate martyrdom both within Islam and in comparison to other religious traditions, notably Judaism and Christianity.... The writing is engaging, and Cook cleverly chooses his excerpted tidbits for their dramatic impact.... The major contributions of this book are many." - The Historian
Ideas about Islamic martyrdom have evolved across the ages to suit prevailing circumstances. It is the evolution of these different interpretations, from the time of Muhammad to the present, that David Cook charts in this fascinating history of the role of suffering and peoples' willingness to die for their faith.