Do we need yet another short history of Christianity? Probably not, though Norris (church history, Emmanuel Sch. of Religion) is wise to recognize that Christianity is nothing but an abstraction and that attempts to write its history are impossible. The major achievement of this book, which is part of a series on world religions (e.g., Klaus K. Klostermaier's Hinduism: A Short History, among others), is that unlike other histories it goes beyond the Western world to place Christian traditions in their Asian, African, and Latin American contexts. As Norris documents, Christianity did not have one victory after another, and he describes all its failures and near annihilations. The book follows no strict chronology, but topics on the early and medieval periods outnumber those for the modern period. In attempting to cover all the data available, the book abounds in overgeneralizations. It will be of value to libraries already committed to completing this multicultural series on the history of world religions, but as a single volume it is inadequate. Brian Moynahan's The Faith: A History of Christianity is a good one-volume option, although it is certainly not short-James A. Overbeck, Atlanta-Fulton P.L., GA Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.