Lands of Water. The people of Vercelli in the age of the crusades
History and legends from a corner of Italy's Piedmont region, tales of characters who were born and lived there, but who set off for far-flung exotic parts of the world, becoming caught up in often astonishing adventurers: Caesars of Byzantium, Kings of Jerusalem, patriarchs of Antioch. With his customary panache as both historian and narrator, Alessandro Barbero describes the life and times of a miniscule patch of the Western hemisphere - an area of land stretching just a few hundred square kilometres now lying in the province of Vercelli - at the time of the crusades. The account successfully unravels the threads that link the local to the global history of the Mediterranean area.