This is the first English translation of the earliest extant manuscript of the Thousand and One Nights. In his introduction, Haddawy explains why he expects the result to be distinctly different from any previous translation -- and indeed it seems so to me (I've read several others). Not only is the text Haddawy is working from different, but he's chosen a refreshingly direct style. There's fewer pompous, ornate passages in this version, and plenty of humor (some of which appeals to me and some of which doesn't). The compiler(s) of the manuscript also included lots of poetry, some of it classical, some perhaps written by the compiler(s). A lot of it is very bad in English, and Haddawy says that he wrote it that way deliberately because the originals were bad!