The conquest of the city by Spaniards brings together five families, whose stories are told as they struggle to survive in war-torn Cordoba, while three families flee the city forever.
The families are Muslim as well as Christian and Jews, whose ancestors had to convert to the Muslim faith or face exile. The hazardous journeys by the families that left the city and their uncertain futures are explored in this fascinating historical saga.
To understand the situation of Cordoba and the Iberian Peninsula in the thirteenth century, historians point to the 711 invasion by a Berber Umayyad dynasty from North Africa. They defeated the ruling Visigoths, putting the entire Iberian Peninsula in their hands, except for the far northern part. Under Muslim governance, this area was known as Al Andalus. The Umayyad stayed in power until 1031. Between then and the conquest of Cordoba by the Spaniards in 1236, various Muslim rulers ruled Al Andalus.
The golden age of Jews living in Muslim Spain is considered to have started at the beginning of the tenth century, but ended with the fall of the Umayyad caliphate. Cordoba had a population at that time of about 400,000, and was the largest city in all of Europe.
(About the Author)
Dr. Alex Bloch was educated in the US where he received his B.sc degree from MIT and M.sc from Columbia. He eventually moved to Israel where he received the PhD in history from Tel-Aviv university. After having taught at that university he started writing his historical novels.