Wednesday, July 5, 2017
99 Cahaya di Langit Eropah
I haven't been writing about the books that I read for nearly 5 years! I used to love doing book reviews in the past and occasionally I did get email of appreciation from the authors too! Nowadays, I only updated my Good Reads bookshelf once in a while but I never leave reviews. Just to keep track whether I have reach my number of books read per year target or not. My target is very low, just 12 books per year; that's one book per month.
This one is my latest favourite, written by an Indonesian lady. It's not that hard to understand since there are not many Indonesian words that are unfamiliar to me. It's basically a travelogue while her husband and her lived in Austria for a few years. It was about how they had to adapt from living in an Islamic country to being a minority in Europe. And how they discovered the history of Islam all over Europe and come to love Islam more and more thereafter.
The first part of this book tells about how the expansion of the Ottoman empire was halted in Austria. Then they went to Paris and was accompanied by a historian who brought them into the Lourve where she showed them the exhibits that proves how Islamic culture was highly regarded for centuries in the past. Then they went to Spain to learn more about the Al-Andalus.
I'm quite familiar with the Islamic history and I remember them quite well from watching many documentaries but this book tells me a lot of things that I've never heard of like how Croissant is related to the defeat of the Ottoman. I also love how the couple responded when their devotion were questioned by those who didn't believe in God and how the other characters that they met worked hard to portray that Islam is a religion of peace.
I love how she can incorporate the Quranic verses and Hadith in the paragraphs. This reminds me of "Ayat-ayat Cinta" the first book that made me fall in love with Indonesian books; they are just full of reminders that make me stop and ponder for a while or if it's something unheard of, I will search for itand get to learn something new.
What made it so exciting while I was reading this, I was in Europe! And I was in Spain when I finally get the time to read it since there were a lot of moving about while we were in Norway. The film is good, I was told but I decided to read the book first before watching it. I highly recommend this for leisure read (^^)
This book really made me think of how Islam reached its peak in the past. It was how the people of that time really understand and follow what was taught in the Al Quran and Hadith; they put knowledge on top of everything and observed good akhlaq. As oppose to people nowadays, there are even group of 'intellects' who are trying to challenge the interpretation of the Al Quran and Hadith to suit their lifestyle. Unbelievable~