This is a fascinating subject and therefore it had to be a fascinating book. It helps that it is written by the extraordinarily knowledgeable Annemarie Schimmel. As a prodigy who finished her Doctorate at 19, and as a polyglot who could speak and lecture in Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Turkish etc…, Schimmel´s account had to be interesting. Unsurprisingly, she became the first Professor of Indo-Muslim Culture at Harvard. I have particularly liked her accounts of life at the courts and her broader approach to cultural life.Things that could be better in this book: the translation (several ambiguous sentences), maps (only one with only the obvious places indicated), and a greater sensitivity to the neophyte reader. Schimmel is so comfortable in her command of the subject that she moves backwards and forwards through history assuming we can follow her with ease.