Reading pleasures

Updated: 2011-01-07 13:00

By Chitralekha Basu (China Daily European Weekly)

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Whatever genre you fancy, these English-language book titles of 2011 are sure to delight

Since the New Year is a week old, and assuming that your "China-reading" list for 2011 is still a virgin sheet, or nearly so, we would like to bring you a selection of what the English-language publishers have lined up this year. Here's a checklist that, we hope, will have some use for anybody remotely interested in China - be it its past, present or future; people, politics or photographs; writers, revolutions or real estate.


Reading pleasures

Henry Kissinger's book, On China, is expected to offer a lot of insight.
Provided to China Daily

Slated for a May release, On China, by Henry Kissinger, looks set to be a landmark publication.

Kissinger, the chief architect of the United States' foreign policy between 1969 and 1977, visited China nine times. He is credited with breaking the ice between China and the United States since the big freeze that crystallized with the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949.

Expect to find hitherto-unknown details about Kissinger's trysts with Chinese political giants, late chairman Mao Zedong and late premier Zhou Enlai, and also his views on how China might be impacting the rest of the world in the future.

"It is a rare privilege to publish a book by someone who has not only observed the development of China over the past 40 years, but also played an active part in its opening up," says Jo Lusby, head, Penguin China. "His perspective will inevitably contribute much to Western understanding of this country."


A Chinese statesman's view of the world will be brought to English-speaking readers by HarperCollins in March. Tang Jiaxuan, China's foreign minister from 1998 to 2003 who played a significant role in negotiating bilateral relations with the US, Russia, Japan and the European Union, has written an engaging account of the backstage drama in Tempest and Zephyr.

MacMillan is launching the paperback edition of As China Goes So Goes the World: How Chinese Consumers are Transforming Everything, by Karl Gerth.

Praised by The Wall Street Journal Asia as a book that ought to appeal to "readers from executives looking to break into the China market to sociologists keen to understand how consumerism is changing China", Gerth's book is about the pervasive growth of American-style consumer culture in China. "Everyday choices made by ordinary Chinese" might effect a paradigm change in the global economy, it contends.


Aertropolis (MacMillan), by John D Kasarda, due in March, examines the future of urban living, when a giant airport will form the pivot of all activity, a hub connecting workers, suppliers and consumer goods with the global network. Beijing, Amsterdam and Washington DC are already headed that way, the author argues.

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