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Empire of Fear

Inside the Islamic State

Andrew Hosken

Tourists killed in Tunisia, Jihadi John targeted by drone strikes, carnage in Paris and hundreds of thousands of Syrians risking everything to reach Europe in an attempt to escape the violence. Islamic State’s reign of terror continues.

Back in June 2014 Islamic State had launched an astonishing blitzkrieg which saw them seize control of an area in the Middle East the size of Britain. The news was soon filled with their relentless acts of savagery, yet nobody seemed to know who they were or where they’d come from. In this updated edition of his acclaimed book, BBC reporter Andrew Hosken delivers the inside story on Islamic State from their origins to the present day. Through extensive first-hand reporting, Hosken builds a comprehensive picture of IS, their brutal ideology and exterminationist methods. The result is equally compelling and horrifying.

  • Publication date: December 3, 2015
  • ISBN: 9781780749334
  • RRP: £4.99
  • Pages: 352


Hosken is a valiant guide through the baffling complexities of the Middle East cauldron... his obvious integrity and command of the subject go a very long way in explaining the inexplicable. Perhaps to understand ISIS is eventually to defeat it. If so, Hosken deserves much credit for an enlightening if frightening read.

Independent on Sunday


Evening Standard, Best Books of 2015

‘It's a bloody, violent tale, told here with compassion and a quest for understanding. Hosken explores these historical roots with depth and clarity; readers will come to understand a more focused version of what motivates the Islamic State.

Publishers Weekly

‘Carefully crafted… persuasive… meticulous… Hosken’s conclusions are measured but however quietly spoken they retain a frightening resonance.’

Sunday HeraldHugh MacDonald

A tremendously useful, insightful study of the frightening spread of a culture of death.

Kirkus, starred review

‘Lively and chilling’

The Times

‘Of all the recent crop of books about the Islamic State, this is the best.  It is well-written and superbly researched  by someone who knows his subject intimately; if you want an authoritative, well-researched but above all readable account of this foul but for many all too appealing organisation, look no further – Empire of Fear is that book.’

Frank Ledwidge, author of Losing Small Wars and Investment in Blood

‘Andy Hosken is a brilliant investigative reporter with an unerring eye for a story. The rise of the Islamic State is an event as seismic as it is widely misunderstood, and Empire of Fear is an essential contribution to fathoming the truth of what is currently happening in the Middle East.’

Tom Holland, author of Persian Fire and In the Shadow of the Sword

Veteran BBC correspondent Andrew Hosken ably chronicles and thoroughly documents the rise of ISIS and its leaders – as well as explaining how the group managed, in a few short months, to threaten everything Americans and others fought and paid dearly to establish in Iraq from 2003 to 2011.

Christian Science Monitor

Andrew Hosken

Author page

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