Genghis Khan: Life, Death, and Resurrection
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Genghis Khan: Life, Death, and Resurrection

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  610 ratings  ·  65 reviews
Genghis Khan is one of history's immortals, alive in memory as a scourge, hero, military genius and demi-god. To Muslims, Russians and westerners, he is a murderer of millions, a brutal oppressor. Yet in his homeland of Mongolia he is the revered father of the nation, and the Chinese honor him as the founder of a dynasty. In his so-called Mausoleum in Inner Mongolia, worsh...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published February 6th 2007 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,122)
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Jafar
If you’re from anywhere in Asia or Eastern Europe, Genghis makes a prominent (and most like a scary) appearance in your history text books. I thought it would be good to forget what my school books told me about Genghis and read an unbiased biography of him by an Englishman who is not burdened with what Genghis did to England. This book is well-researched and educational. There are parts at the end about the author’s travels in Mongolia that did not interest me and I skipped.

The book basically c...more
Jennifer (JC-S)
‘Genghis Khan is one of history’s immortals.’

By the time of his death in 1227, Genghis Khan ruled an empire that stretched from the Caspian Sea to the Pacific Ocean. His empire was larger than either that of Rome, or Alexander the Great. To many Muslims, Russians, and Europeans, Genghis Khan is remembered as a murderer of millions. He is honoured in China as the founder of the Yuan dynasty, and in Mongolia he is revered as the father of the nation.

In this book John Man presents an overview of th...more
Matt Brady
A decent biography of Genghis Khan, relying heavily on The Secret History of the Mongols, a document composed possibly by Genghis' half-brother in the years immediately following the Great Khan's death in 1227 AD. Man uses the History not necessarily for historical fact, but more for an insight into contemporary Mongolian psychology. Man also delves pretty deeply (perhaps a little too deeply) into the various mysteries and myths surrounding Genghis's death and secret burial, and into his legacy...more
Olethros
-Del protagonista y de su concepto ayer y hoy.-

Género. Ensayo.

Lo que nos cuenta. Bajo el subtítulo “Vida, muerte y resurrección”, ensayo sobre Genghis Khan que nos aproxima a su biografía desde fuentes historiográficas y otras de la tradición oral pero que mezcla la Historia con la guía de viajes, algo de novela e incluso análisis sociopolítico (y hasta religioso) del presente y del pasado para, simultáneamente, hablarnos de la idea de “lo mongol” como concepto e identidad.

¿Quiere saber más d...more
Edward
Genghis Khan is a name that will pop up in any study of the last 800 years. He is one of history's most powerful ripple effects, a veritable Bad Wolf (for you DW fans) bound up in the rise and fall of countless civilizations. Everything about him is shrouded in myth, legacy, even theology.

This book is part historic investigation, part personal journey. The last few chapters detail the author's own exploration of the Khan's homeland, descendants, and possible burial sites, and are both exciting...more
Combo
Well researched and written, does a fantastic job of conveying a sense of Genghis Khan's personality and overall attitude, as well as his historical legacy. The narratives of the author's own travels could have been left out though, and would have made it a shorter and no less informative read.
Babak Fakhamzadeh
Fantastic. Man creates a cross between a travelogue and historical research on a subject that is as intriguing as they come. True I find Chinggis (yes,that is the best spelling which Man acknowledges) immensely intriguing myself but Man's book truly is gripping from page one. He's clear, observant, but also very funny. And time and again. He's able to put history in perspective, comparing Mongol customs with similar observances in the west or putting the sheer scale of Chinggis' operations in pe...more
Kalilah
Jun 12, 2012 Kalilah rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone with a good understanding of this subject
I purchased this book after watching a historical documentary about the Crusades, in which Genghis Khan was briefly mentioned. I become very interested in him and the Mongolian Empire and decided to delve deeper into this rather obscure and rarely discussed part of history.

I chose this book because of the good reviews it got, but I found myself a little disappointed in it. All the information is there, but I felt it was scattered all over the place and in no particular order, which for me was ra...more
Zeke Chase
Genghis has been one of my favourite historical characters for a while now, though I haven't read any actual biographies of the man before now. I happened to pick up a copy of “Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World” by Jack Weatherford from a friend and added it to my list, however, upon looking the book up on Goodreads, one of the first reviews proceeded to extol Genghis for all his virtues (banning torture, linking east and west, meritocracy, freedom of religion...) while downplaying...more
Judi Moore
I have a 'need to know' regarding this book. But even if I didn't this is popular history at its best.

It's great that history no longer has to be as dessicated as the bones of the people it describes. Mr Man is one of the foremost popular historians writing today. No longer do you need to be bored witless to learn something about history: huzzah!

His beat is the Orient (Mongolia, China, Japan) and about it he is both knowledgeable and eminently readable.

Of the 3 of his I've read this sticks to i...more
Ricki
This is an interesting history of the rise and spread of the Mongol Empire under Genghis Khan. Although there are maps and photos in the book, I found it even more interesting to use Google Earth at several points whilst reading the book - the terrain across which his armies travelled, the position of the various dynasties that he conquered and some of the archaeological sites were all more impressive when linked to the geography of the regions. In addition, there is a link on Google Earth that...more
Shaunak Bhatt
A unbiased biography of genghis khan. Westeners view genghis khan as some savage when they treat alexander vikings and romans as heroes which is not the case as rhey were also responsible for millions of death. This book gives an unbiased and subjective view of how gneghis khan became a leader and led mongolian clans to so many conqests.
Yugaljoshi
An insightful book on perhaps the greatest leader of all time. The book is a mix of history and travelogue and someone not interested in biographies (like me) would find it a tough read. I scanned the book first and then reread it once. Worth a read though. Talks about the unique strategies Mongols used to defeat their enemies, their incomparable ruthlessness, immaculate planning and execution. Be patient while reading and you will enjoy. Don't get judgmental as you would find it quite shocking...more
Bryn Hammond
Half travelogue, and the latter parts are investigation into his death and the scramble for his tomb, or for political ownership of him (outrageously, the Chinese claim him). Interspersed is Temujin’s story, a potted history and an excursion into war strategy, but this isn’t a biography as such, or a history of the Mongols.

It’s a hodgepodge book -- like those reenactment documentaries, faction, and I tend to be impatient with history told this way. However, I enjoyed the travelogue in this one,...more
Jim Kennedy
This is an excellent book. John Man actually visited the vast majority (if not all) of the locations mentioned in the story of Genghis Khan, and likes to bring you there with him to see what they are like now, and how he would imagine they were 700 years ago. The story is well told, and alongside it Man recounts his own travels following Genghis' journey himself. I thought it overlong (his descriptions of his own travels drag a little at times), but that should not take away from a good read if...more
Bugenhagen
A good history of Genghis Khan and the Mongol people in his lifetime, well written by a passionate historian with first hand experience of the culture. Mostly clear and to the point, I felt I learned a lot from this without having to expend too much effort, which is ideal for the most casual of history buffs among us. Unfortunately, the final chapter 'Resurrection' is bogged down with lengthy discussions about things like the site of Genghis' grave and the author's own adventures climbing a sign...more
Nick
Readable and reasonably entertaining, and you get a decent sense of what Genghis Khan represents for contemporary Mongolian and Chinese people. There's a big obstacle for Man to deal with: the shortage of reliable information about the Khan's life. He tries to overcome it via a mixture of informed guesswork and (occasionally) fairly wild speculation, as well as by trying to make the book as much about his own travels as about the historical details. I found this slightly off-putting at first, bu...more
Christopher Earl
Great read thrilling
Mine
Jul 06, 2014 Mine added it
brilliant
Evan
There have been a ton of biographies written about Genghis Kahn and this is the one I happened to read. The dude has done his research and it shows. However, trying to parallel his own travels thru Mongolia (he ties in a story of him visiting sites throughout Asia which were key landmarks to the rise of Genghis Kahn) doesn't do it for me and I skipped over the end of the book where he talks about his travels there and modern Mongolia and all that. Worth the read though.
Julia
John Man is an excellent historian with a affection and interest in Genghis Khan and the Mongol people (both past and present) that just comes right off the page. He is also an exemplary storyteller with regards to his own adventures whilst researching this book that makes this history an easy and enjoyable read. If you have an interest in Genghis Khan, his legacy, mythos and a people which are still, by and large, a mystery to many -- if not most -- Westerners.
Guy Grobler
A fantastic read. Genghis Khan, who united the Mongolian tribes, who conquered of all Asia (not inc India), who 1 of every 25 Asian's can claim to be descendant from, Genghis came from no where. The book traces the Genghis Khan story in Mongolia, and follows him on his trail - telling the story of the Mongol people and the story of their most celebrated icon/leader in the process.
Excellent writing by John Man.
Ste21 Donaldson-Ellison
Fantastic read this book holds a unique history of one of the worlds greatest generals, including how he was able to conquer/rule with purely nomadic tribes as well as the resulting god-like worship born from him and is a notable religion in modern Mongolia.
All this is brought together as John Man travels across the length and breadth of Mongolia exploring the areas in which the legend lived and travelled.
Michael Arvelo
Could not get into this one and I love history, including the drab stuff. This just seemed like a bunch of notes by an author who went a few places and copied another book
Keeley
Mar 01, 2008 Keeley rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: history lovers.
I picked this up because I wanted to learn more about him. It's a very interesting read. The author goes off a bit, and he tells a little too much of the gory details, but he was actually in the places he is talking about. He talks about his travels and what he learned. He is very accurate and speaks to the common reader, not a historian.
Darren Chin
John Man is by far my favourite popular history writer. This book gave insight to the life and times of a man that John perceives as destined-yet-accidental for glory. The facts collected and summed up over the years are presented little by little but yet interesting enough to make you want to flip to the next page. It was well-worth my time.
Max
Not easy to pigeonhole - two-thirds quite good history book, one-third travelogue and reportage as the author traipses around central Asia seeking the traces of the great Khan. Genghis' story is impressive, and helps fill in some of the central asian gap in most Westerners' (and Easterners' for that matter) historical knowledge.
Marc Brackett
A good starting point, the information was a bit scattered but considering the subject and lack of extensive sources to draw from this was a very nice book in English. As the Mongol empire spanned numerous cultures there is no one complete sources and often sources have multiple supporting documents.
Claire
A little too narrative for my liking... Not particularly interested in the more travel guide type stories in the book. I felt there was a great deal of analysis and discussion missing in this book. Didn't particularly appreciate the heavy reliance on "The Secret History", either.
Fraser
I loved this book.

I felt John Man took me on a real journey through Mongolia, historically and in the present. I learned so much more from this book, having thought that I knew a bit about the history of the Mongol empire he built.

Well recommended.
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John Anthony Garnet Man is a British historian and travel writer. His special interests are China, Mongolia and the history of written communication. He takes particular pleasure in combining historical narrative with personal experience.

He studied German and French at Keble College, Oxford, before doing two postgraduate courses, a diploma in the History and Philosophy of Science at Oxford and Mon...more
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