I have heard bits and pieces of what Islam is and is not. This book helped really clarify what the fundamental teachings of the faith are, and how we might expect/not expect its followers to believe/react. With very specific examples and excerpts from the Koran, I can feel much more confident in my understanding, and I know specifically where to go for more information.
This book is well written and informative. The author offers a great deal of detail about the Koran. At times it seems tedious. From his perspective, Mohammad simply combined ideas from Christianity and Judaism, to whom he was exposed in the western Arabia peninsula, into one new religion. Because Mohammad was illiterate, he recited these teachings to others who memorized them. After his death, they were written down. It's interesting to see how he misunderstands Christian theology and even the simple stories of Christian history. The author also gives ideas and suggestions to believers on how to approach the Muslims.