Interesting. The central bunch of question marks seems to hang over the absence of any firsthand accounts of Mohammed’s life, the absence of commentaries by contemporaries and the absence of any original material by Mohammed himself. These missing pieces are much the same in the case of the biblical Jesus, and are similarly the mainstay of Jesus-sceptics’ arguments.
The reviewer appears to relish pulling the flying carpet out from under Mohammed. What’s not so clear is whether this is because it’s a blast against Islam as Christianity’s greatest threat, or because it’s in pursuit of rationality.
I read Karen Armstrong’s biography of Muhammad which was quite different to the assessment above. As a theologian she seems to be trying to take a more conciliatory approach to both Jesus’ and Muhammad’s historicity although she doesn’t ‘buy’ into the infallibility of either the Qur’an or the Bible. Indeed she questions the historicity of Moses and analyses the authorship of the Torah’s chapters, normally ascribed to Moses which he clearly never wrote. However, it is generally accepted that Muhammad was illiterate and dictated his ‘visions’ to a scribe…the critique above puts a big question mark on this. As with the bible, the Qur’an is far from perfect and has many conflicting statements and uses Arabic that is imprecise and in many instances, poor grammar. So Al’lah was not perfect it seems or maybe Gabriel was a poor messenger.