By Simon Sebag Montefiore
Knopf, $35.00, 650 pages

Simon Sebag Montefiore covers Jerusalem, a city of tremendous history and controversy, on almost every subject matter in Jerusalem. The nonfiction runs in chronological order of three thousand years of war, religion, and coexistence. A hefty book of 544 pages, excluding citations, maps and a preface, this comprehensive tale about a city on a hill is incredibly detailed. From the roots of Judaism to current relations with the world, Jerusalem doesn’t leave anything out. The book links the dots between David, the current government of Israel, the beginning of Israel and Palestine relations, and remains largely unbiased. Told mostly through the eyes of political and military leaders, Montefiore describes the violence in 850 BC with remarkable clarity. This detail-oriented style mimics that of an autobiography.

Liz Friedman