This is an account of the collapse of the civilized world of the Late Bronze age.
The author is professor of classics at George Washington University.
Link to brief review: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10185.html
What I find striking is the sophistication of the pluralistic civilization, and its fragility.
The correspondence of the time to today's interconnected but extremely fragile civilization is striking.
To clarify, I have not read the book itself. I am basing this post on the review, at the link provided above.