Prophet, statesman, jurist, mystic, shaman, husband, father: there are infinite ways to remember and imagine Muhammad. This book provides forty different windows into his life, his teachings, and his legacy.
As intellectually diverse as a book can get ... When Knight is in professor mode, Muhammad is perfect. He is scholarly but never dry, learned but never a show-off. He's superb at providing frameworks to fit new ideas in, and at helping readers reassess old ones ... problems arise when Knight can't pick a persona. When he fails to settle into personal writing but opts not to go academic, he flounders ... chapters can seem disorganized, and Knight's tonal switches can be disorienting ... a highly personal project. It's valuable — and aggravating — for precisely that reason, which Knight knows ... a book designed to seduce, educate, and irritate its audience into curiosity about Islam and Muhammad, and on all three fronts it succeeds. By the end, it's clear that 40 introductions are nowhere near enough. Knight's readers will want many more.
More than a survey of the prophet’s life and times, this book is an introduction to the stunning diversity of Islam and the ways in which Muslims think, dream, and make Muhammad into their very own prophet ... Anyone who picks up this sparkling book will be introduced to the many Muhammads who exist in the world and the ways in which they are in conversation with each other in the lives of Muslims across the globe.