The prestigious Italian peer-reviewed journal, the Quarderni Asiatici published a major review by Dr. Manouchehr Moshtagh Khorasani (Recensioni Libri (Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War). Quarderni Asiatici 95, n. 95 – Settembre 2011, pp. 105-119.):
Dr. Kaveh Farrokh has done extensive research on Ancient Iran consulting not only international sources but also Iranian sources and, in this book, has combined a general history together with the product of his extensive research on the military history of the Ancient Iran. As far as the military history of the Achemenian, Parthian and Sassanian periods is concerned, without any doubt, this book is and will remain a very important source and an extremely valuable one. In addition, the book has a beautiful design and contains many interesting pictures. Thus, Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War can be described in one word: “excellent.” There are many points that make this book an indispensible volume for the study of the military history of Iran. I will explain these points one by one in this review. But just in the beginning I would like to stress that Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War is unique as it describes the battle formations and tactics and strategies employed by Iranian warriors on the battlefield. Many history books lack precisely this description of military tactics. They pay only cursory attention to the warfare and instead expend much space on describing the court politics, politics, economics, dating of the events, religion, philosophy, art and social relationships. For military historians, ancient weapons analysts, and people interested in swordsmanship and ancient warfare, this book represents a unique gem. As it exactly does what its title reveals “an accurate analysis of ancient warfare in Iran”. But Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War is not only about the wars of Ancient Iran. It also gives a thorough analysis of the history of different dynasties of ancient Iran providing a meticulous research and cross-referencing. Iran has a very good level of scholarship and Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War makes extensive use of Iranian sources. This factor gives the book additional weight…Shadows in the Desert: Ancient Persia at War (available: OspreyPublishing or Amazon.com.) outlines Persia’s contributions to world civilization in areas such as mythology, technology, sciences, literature, militaria, the arts, music, architecture and garments. The main aim of this book is to promote the establishment of a permanent Iranian Studies department in Canadian and American universities.