Jerusalem, the Biography
Simon Sebag Montefiore
Who better to have opened JBW than a captivating and charismatic storyteller on the most iconic city of the world, the capital of three faiths, the prize of many conquerors, the jewel of many empires, and the eye of the storm of today's battle of civilisations: Jerusalem.
Simon Sebag Montefiore's epic account is seen through kings, conquerors, emperors and soldiers; Muslims, Jews, Christians, Macedonians, Romans and Greeks; Palestinians and Israelis. Their individual stories combine to form the biography of a city - a gritty, dramatic, violent tale of power, empire, love, vanity, luxury and death, bringing three thousand years of history vividly to life.
The great-great nephew of the founder of modern Jerusalem gave us a taster of his biography of this much fought over and dreamt of city.
Simon Sebag Montefiore was born in 1965 and read history at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge University. Catherine the Great and Potemkin was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson, Duff Cooper, and Marsh Biography Prizes. Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar won the History Book of the Year Prize at the British Book Awards.Young Stalin won the Costa Biography Award (UK), the LA Times Book Prize for Biography (US), Le Grand Prix de la Biographie Politique (France) and the Kreisky Prize for Political Literature (Austria). Montefiore's books are published in over 35 languages. Miramax, FilmFour and Ruby Films are developing a movie of Young Stalin. He is also the author of the novel, Sashenka. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, he lives in London with his wife, the novelist Santa Montefiore. Jerusalem, the Biography is his most recent book.