PositiveThe Financial Times (UK)In this engaging account, Ben Hubbard shows both sides of the story, bringing his narrative alive with a host of insights, conversations, anecdotes and details ... Part of Prince Mohammed’s motivation, Hubbard suggests, may be driven by his envy of wealthier cousins ... Like other leaders, MBS has used Covid-19 to tighten the state’s control, while casting aside the opportunities to build bridges with Iran that have been taken by other Gulf states. Blaming Iran for disseminating the virus, he seems to be exploiting it to further his agenda of advancing Saudi nationalism and modernisation without loosening his grip on power.
MixedThe Financial TimesAthough [The House of Islam is a] product of greater intellectual maturity... [it] is a good deal less compelling [than Husain\'s former works] ... [The House of Islam] is a rather slight book that lacks thematic coherence or firm historical underpinning. One looks in vain for references to modern analysts of \'global Islam\' ... The absence of scholarship, however, is also an asset. Husain has a knack for explaining complicated matters in straightforward layman’s language ... While Husain’s book raises more questions than it answers, it goes some way to explaining the impasse faced by modern Muslim societies.