'From the Holy Mountain' sees the author trace the footsteps of the monk John Moschos during his 6th Century AD wanderings from the monasteries of Mount Olympus through the Christian landscape of the Byzantine empire shortly before it was overrun by the Muslims. The style is typically Dalrymple; authoritative and entertaining and not without some humour as he untangles the religious and ethnic knots that make up much of the Middle East today. The focus is intentionally on the remnant Christian communities scattered through Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Egypt and the decline in their numbers in recent years. If nothing else it brings some balance to the troubles of the area. As usual, the average person has little control over the national vested interests and political point scorers and fundamentalist bigots. Very readable, like all Dalyrmple's travelogues.