This book is not a narrative history of China. Readers looking for a primer on Chinese history will not find it here. Instead what we have is an interesting analysis of certain periods of Chinese history and culture in particular from the Chinese Revolution onwards to now. I won’t go into the details. Others have done that.
The writing is brisk and to the point. Kissinger or his editor is pitching the book to as wide an audience as possible, including the politician looking for a quick introduction, and not just the learned historian. If not, I am indeed perplexed why he kept referring to The Emperor, without naming him as Emperor Chien Lung, when he analysed the Macartney mission. That said, this is a book to be welcomed.