I turned to this book on the advice of a real non-fiction book worm, wanting to give more depth and context to my attempts to better understand the revived antisemitism in the world. And it did. It is a shocking history of persecution, discrimination and organized slaughter. One that started long before the Holocaust, long before the Inquisition, even before the Romans crucified Jesus. The creation of Israel has nothing to do – as so many claim – with the deeply ingrained hatred and discrimination that is the common lot of Jews in large parts of the world. Reading the book during Christmas seemed someway appropriate and gave its lessons an extra sense of relevance.