Setting the Desert on Fire: T. E. Lawrence and Britain's Secret War in Arabia, 1916-1918 (Paperback)
"Barr turns history into a drama, with bright writing and a fascinating cast of characters.” —Mary Foster, Associated Press
T. E. Lawrence’s classic Seven Pillars of Wisdom made the Arab revolt a legend and helped turn him into the mythical “Lawrence of Arabia.” Setting the Desert on Fire is both a masterly account of the intrigue behind the revolt and its startling consequences for the present-day Middle East and a portrait of Lawrence that brings fresh insight to the true nature of the master mythmaker.
About the Author
James Barr is the author of Setting the Desert on Fire. During the research for A Line in the Sand he was a Visiting Fellow at St Antony’s College, Oxford. He lives in London.
A tightly-focused, fast-paced account…Mr. Barr’s achievement is to tell Lawrence’s story more clearly and objectively, helping to make sense of a complex war fought in an unfamiliar land and language.
— Adam Kirsch - New York Sun
[James] Barr has written a compact, scrupulously accurate chronicle of the revolt and Lawrence’s role in it, utilizing previously unavailable archival material…An excellent general history of a widely misunderstood struggle that largely defined the shape of the modern Middle East.
Barr expertly navigates an intriguing landscape of shifting alliances and labyrinthine politics peopled with eccentric characters to demystify a fascinating legend.
— Publishers Weekly