40% off Jack Gergurich's Pick of the Week
Prior to writing this piece, I checked to see what books others had already chosen. Much to my amusement I discovered that the other writers had the same problem I had: Which book do I choose?
I settled on Fr. Samir Khalil Samir's 111 Questions on Islam. Before reading the book, I had a limited knowledge of Islam, less so than my knowledge of the subject matter of my other “favorite” books. So, this book helped me the most.
The book consists of an interview with Fr. Samir by two Italian journalists who have great knowledge of Islam, Giorgio Paolucci and Camille Eid. Fr Samir is one of the world's leading experts on Islam. About him, the journalists write,”... but it would be a mistake to consider him a mere scholar who looks only at the objects of his research with the detachment of a refined intellectual. What is striking about his personality is that his knowledge of the topic is always accompanied by a passion for humanity–a thirst for the truth that resides in every person and that the scholar is capable of discovering and expressing in words.”
111 Questions on Islam is presented in a question and answer style that lends itself to easy look-up and review. I found myself going back and forth to check my understanding of particular items as I proceeded through the book. The format helped immensely.
The questions asked by the interviewers and the answers by Fr Samir were direct, unambiguous, and comprehensive. At times, they asked for additional information about comments Fr. Samir made in order to gain greater clarity. The questions and answers were fair and charitable and at no time did I sense “political correctness.”
The book is comprised of five sections (The Foundations, Can Islam Change?, The Challenge of Human Rights, Islam Among Us, and Islam and Christianity) plus Appendices, a Glossary of Arabic terms, a Bibliography, and an Index. While all five sections are excellent, I found The Challenge of Human Rights and Islam and Christianity to be especially enlightening.
I highly recommend 111 Questions on Islam, especially for those with little knowledge of the subject.
Jack Gergurich has been with Ignatius Press almost ten years. He works in accounting laboring to keep the debits on the left and the credits on the right. Born and raised in Butte, Montana he moved to San Diego, California with his family as a teenager. He received a degree in Accounting from San Diego State and became a CPA. He eventually left the commercial world to work for Catholic organizations and finally (and thankfully!) ended up at Ignatius Press.
*Employee Pick of the Week program features savings of 40% off a book, movie, or compact disc personally chosen and recommended by an Ignatius Press employee. Each week, an Ignatius Press employee will select a favorite book, movie, or other Ignatius Press product and write a few sentences about why he/she thinks customers will enjoy the particular selection. A short bio of the selecting employee will also be included, giving customers a chance to learn a bit more about the people who are Ignatius Press.