The storied city : the quest for Timbuktu and the fantastic mission to save its past / Charlie English.
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- ISBN: 9781594634284
- ISBN: 1594634289
- Physical Description: 400 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
- Publisher: New York : Riverhead Books, 2017.
Contents / Notes
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Prolog: Enterprise and genius -- Occupation -- A seeker of manuscripts -- A wide but extended blank -- Hell is not far away -- The fourth traveler -- Al-Qaeda to the rescue -- Frogs and rosbifs -- Ismael's list -- Destruction -- The armchair explorer -- The headless horseman -- The pope of Timbuktu -- Secret agents -- Liberation -- Lives of the scholars -- The terrible twosome -- King Leopold's paperweight -- Auto-da-fé -- Chronicle of the seeker -- An Indiana Jones moment in real life! -- Manuscript fever -- The myth factory -- Epilog.
The story of how a team of librarians and archivists joined forces to spirit tens of thousands of ancient manuscripts into hiding when al-Qaeda-linked jihadists surged across Mali in 2012, threatening the existence of these precious documents. Relying on extensive research and firsthand reporting, Charlie English expertly twines a fraught and fascinating account of one of the planet's extraordinary places, and the myths from which it has become inseparable. -- from dust jacket.