Review: The Knights of Malta, Joseph Attard

Rating: 2 out of 5

I have very mixed feelings about this one: from one point of view, this is the most detailed and thorough history of the Knights of St John I’ve read; from another, this is a poorly edited book that is difficult to read.

Somehow, the first chapters by now seem to have been a lot better. I guess my thinking is that I must have continued on for a reason: although what I’d say is that here the primary reason for my willingness to stand this level of language was that I wanted to learn more about Malta. This I achieved — with plenty of headache during the process.

Therefore, I’m a bit dubious on whether this is something anyone else should even want to take a look at. In my (sparse) tests in the bookshops in Malta, this was the best history of the Order of St John there — and that is a pity: I can only imagine how good this could be if it was written in fluid English that connected one thought to the next… At the same time, for a history buff such as myself, I am willing to struggle through it — if that interest isn’t there, this book will also kill the spark, I’m afraid.

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