China’s future has never been so difficult to predict. After a roller-coaster ride from Mao to market that has seen its economy grow to become the second largest in the world, dragging it into the political, diplomatic and military premier league, many in China are now debating where the country will go next. The turning point was the 2008 financial crisis. By hastening America’s decline, the crisis both boosted China’s power and raised questions about how much China could rely on Western consumption to drive its growth. As a result, the country finds itself at a crossroads, needing to rethink its economic, social and political models.
Jonathan Fenby’s book tries to explore how China got here by drawing on his own experience of the country – he was editor of the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong – and by scouring secondary sources for surprising statistics and illuminating anecdotes that bring China to life for