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The Saudi Royal Family

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Overview

The House of Saud had humble beginnings as a family of nomads living in Arabia. But when a new form of the Islamic religion, Wahhabism, influenced the household, they began a quest to unite all of Arabia under this faith. Wars were waged for more than a century until the Al Saud vision finally was realized under King Abdul Aziz, the first king of modern-day Saudi Arabia.

Now the international oil trade has made Saudi Arabia one of the richest countries in the world, and the ...

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Overview

The House of Saud had humble beginnings as a family of nomads living in Arabia. But when a new form of the Islamic religion, Wahhabism, influenced the household, they began a quest to unite all of Arabia under this faith. Wars were waged for more than a century until the Al Saud vision finally was realized under King Abdul Aziz, the first king of modern-day Saudi Arabia.

Now the international oil trade has made Saudi Arabia one of the richest countries in the world, and the Saudi royal family finds itself caught in the balance between traditional Islamic faith and the appeal of wealth and Western-style ways. In addition, evidence points to Saudi involvement in the September 11 attacks on the United States. Combining new information on current events with important historical context, The Saudi Royal Family will spark debate on what lies ahead for one of the richest families in the world.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
In 1901 at the age of 21, Abdul Aziz bin Saud took control of Riyadh and proclaimed himself ruler of all Arabia. He held that position until his death in 1953 and his sons have ruled ever since. Chapters on each of these brother-kings—Saud, Faisal, Khalid and Fahd—offer glimpses into each man's character and his impact on the nation that carries the family name. "As in any family...some have big hearts and grand ideas while others can't seem to do anything right." The story of the Saudi Royal Family is also the story of the evolving relationship with the United States, punctuated by conflicting priorities on all sides and repeated deception by Britain, France and the U.S. The book is well written, but dry, especially for a young audience. The series covers a wide range of leaders from Yasir Arafat and Menachem Begin to Jimmy Carter, George W. Bush, Vladimir Putin and Vicente Fox. The chronology and index are thorough, making the series more useful as a reference source than for straight reading. The opening essay on leadership by noted historian Arthur Schlesinger is intellectually demanding, but it is unappealingly printed in small type with small margins. It would be valuable primarily for generating discussion or writing projects by very advanced students. Part of the "Major World Leaders" series. 2003, Chelsea House,
— Karen Leggett
School Library Journal
Gr 6-9-Reed profiles each of the five Saudi kings, beginning with King Abdul Aziz and ending with the current leader, King Fahd. Each man's personality, approach to ruling, and accomplishments are discussed. The book begins with a lengthy discussion of Islam because it is so important in all aspects of Saudi life, and the history of Saudi Arabia before it became a united kingdom under one ruling family. A brief concluding chapter speculates on the future relationship between Saudi Arabia and the United States. Shields depicts the Iraqi leader as the ruthless tyrant he is, drawing upon contemporary publications for his sources. He opens with a chapter on the "liberation" of Kuwait in 1991, then flashes back to Hussein's childhood and early life. His rise to power in Iraq's Ba'ath political party is also covered. Two-thirds of the book is devoted to his reign as the nation's leader. One chapter each is allocated to discussions of Iraq's long, bloody war with Iran, and the Persian Gulf War. The book concludes with Hussein's postwar years, his deceptive dealings with the United States, and the United Nations's attempts at weapons inspections. The last chapter covers developments through spring 2002 with President George W. Bush's pledge to resume weapon inspections and see a "regime change" in Iraq. With developments rapidly changing, this biography will need updating faster than most. Both books are extensively illustrated with captioned, full-color photographs and maps and serve as informative, useful introductions to their subjects.-Edward Sullivan, White Pine School, TN Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780791092187
  • Publisher: Chelsea House Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/28/2007
  • Series: Modern World Leaders Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 120
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.54 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Table of Contents


Foreword: On Leadership   Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.     6
Humble Origins     12
Desert Kingdom     23
King Abdul Aziz-A New Kingdom     31
King Saud, the Black Sheikh: 1953-1964     41
King Faisal, the Hero: 1964-1975     53
King Khalid, the Quiet One: 1975-1982     60
King Fahd, the Businessman: 1982-2005     66
Saudi Arabia and the War on Terror     82
King Abdullah     93
Friend or Foe: The Future of Saudi Arabia     100
Chronology     110
Bibliography     113
Further Reading     114
Index     116
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2002

    Wow! Relevant book to our times

    I loved the pictures, I loved the writing. Easy to understand and Reed brought up questions in an objective way allowing kids to come to their own conclusions about the Saudi Royal Family. Very in tune to our times! History in the making and children should know what is going on. This book will help them better understand not only the Sauds, but Islam too.

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