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What a great read and so very timely! Author Nigel Cliff's fantastic "The Last Crusade: The Epic Voyages of Vasco da Gama" is now available in QP. Nigel chronicles the clash of the Islamic East and the Christian West in a way I that I had not experienced before. Tracing the roots of the Islamic experience and it's occupation of the Iberian Peninsula helps with the needed background for this story. Then he takes us on the thrilling adventures of the 28 year Portuguese explorer who set out for the elusive sea-based trade route to the east which would not only allow Christendom to penetrate into the heart of India, but would allow a Crusade to halt the economic grip of the East from crushing the West in Europe. A contemporary of Christopher Columbus, it seems as though the tale and accomplishments of Vasco da Gama are mostly overshadowed today...but no longer thanks to the work of Nigel Cliff. A terrific non-fiction historical read that illuminates the events of today.