The Guardian has up on its website an excerpt from Bruce Lawrence's book The Qur'an: A Biography, a book in the series Books That Shook The World:
The Qur'an is a book unlike any other: it is an oral book that sounds better spoken than read silently, but it is an oral book that is also a scripture. More evocative in recitation than in writing, the Qur'an is only fully the Qur'an when it is recited. To hear the Qur'an recited is for Muslims unlike anything else. It is to experience the power of divine revelation as a shattering voice from the Unseen. It moves, it glides, it soars, it sings. It is in this world, yet not of it.Saw this on the display case at Kinokuniya last night, along with the other books in the series. Looks interesting.