Allen, S.J., and Emilie Amt.
The Crusades: A Reader
Readings in Medieval Civilizations and Cultures: VII
. Toronto: Broadview Press, 2003.
Collection of primary sources from both European and Islamic perspectives throughout the duration of the Crusades - excellent variety. Student-friendly contextual introductions to each source along with a brief background of the author.
Bennet, Judith M., and C. Warren Hollister.
Medieval Europe: A Short History
. 10th Ed. Boston: McGraw Hill, 2006.
Secondary source: provides historical context for the Crusades. Also has a great picture of Saladin and Richard III in a mythical joust (p. 230, Fig. 9.2).
Arab Historians of the Crusades
. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1957.
Collection of translated Arabic primary sources during the Crusades, provides great scope of Arabic and Islamic Empires. Excellent background information on Arabic historians and their works, as well as commentary on the quality of their records.
Geary, Patrick J., Ed.
Readings in Medieval History
. 3rd Ed. Toronto: Broadview Press, 2003.
Collection of primary sources, providing impressions of the First Crusade (1096-1099) from the Christian, Jewish, Muslim and Byzantine perspectives (pp. 407-442).
Powerful Sultan and the Uniter of Islam.
New York: Cooper Square Press, 2002.
Biography of Saladin, emphasis on rise to power, loyalty to Islam, and rule as a fair and respected leader. Great section on the Battle of Hattin and Saladin's role as military force and fair leader (pp. 197-216).
The Crusades Through Arab Eyes
. Trans. Jon Rothschild. New York: Schocken Books, 1984.
Collection of primary sources from Arab historians. Excellent portrayal of Saladin as a fair and devout leader (pp. 176-200) as well as timeline incorporating the development of the Islamic Empire (pp. 277-280).
Madden, Thomas F., Ed.
The Crusades: Blackwell Essential Readings in History
Malden: Blackwell Publishing Ltd., 2002.
Collection of essays and articles written by contemporary historians that introduces students to the fundamental concepts of crusading, including the nature of the movement, the motivation of the participants, and the impact on the East. Focuses on the political, economic, religious, and demographic factors behind the Crusades - assumes certain understanding of content but editorial structure is student-friendly. Madden is considered one of the leading experts on the Crusades.
Madden, Thomas F.
The New Concise History of the Crusades
Updated Student Edition
. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2006.
Strongly recommended for students (hence student edition). Text provides background knowledge of Crusades while also tying in the impact of the Crusades on our modern world, post-9/11. Also, includes discussion questions for each chapter.
The Crusades: A Short History
. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1987.
Strong overview of the Crusades with a relatively short account of the Battle of Hattin and the Fall of Jerusalem (pp. 84-87), which is what
Kingdom of Heaven
focuses on. Riley-Smith is also considered one of the leading experts on the Crusades.
The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades
. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.
Excellent sources for illustrations, maps, and photographs related to the Crusades, a great resource for any World History teacher who has many visual learners in the classroom.