"This book is the liveliest account of African history ever written, covering over one] thousand years of trans-Saharan trade. "Finely written and researched. ... This edition will no doubt whet the appetites of a fresh generation of scholars and students for greater knowledge of parts of Africa still surprisingly little-known to the outside world." -- Journal of Islamic Studies "A unique source book." - The New York Times "Utterly enthralling ... splendidly romantic." -- The New Yorker.