Well researched, viscerally detailed. Not an aggrandizement of warmongering and misogyny, but an insight into the ideals and motivations of a group that drew on both masculine and feminine perspectives to function. This book heavily influenced 300 (GN/flick). Deeply personal point of view on an event so epic that it is still being discussed some 2500 years later. History rises from the ashes to grab you by the throat and shake the shit out of you.