Nick Holdstock is an award-winning writer of fiction and journalism who work appears in The Guardian, The Times Literary Supplement, the London Review of Books, Financial Times, n+1, Dissent and Literary Review. He is the author of three non-fiction books about China, The Tree That Bleeds (Luath, 2011), China's Forgotten People (IB Tauris, 2015) and Chasing the Chinese Dream (IB Tauris, 2017) and a novel, The Casualties (St Martins, 2015). His first short story collection, The False River, is due out in late 2019. He is a frequent commentator on China for a variety of media outlets.
Extraordinarily insightful and informative...Holdstock is a journalist who has travelled and lived in Xinjiang on and off since 2001. His new book will make anyone who writes about the region think more deeply -- Jonathan Mirsky * Literary Review * Lucid and up-to-date [Nick Holdstock] makes the case for a deeper understanding of Xinjiang at the moment, a combination of official defensiveness in China and politicisation of agendas outside means that dialogue on this crucial issue barely exists. It is to be hoped that Nick Holdstock s book and others like it will stimulate precisely this sort of dialogue. Without it, a real, and lasting, tragedy is threatened: for the people of Xinjiang and of China, but also those of the region and the wider world. -- Kerry Brown, author of 'CEO China: The Rise of Xi Jinping' * Open Democracy * Refreshingly, this is a work of scepticism rather than sensationalism...the author's experience in the region and his incorporation of the latest scholarship make this the most reliable journalistic account of Xinjiang published in the past few decades. For the policy-maker or the general reader seeking an overview of what is known about Uyghur resistance to Chinese rule, this is a much-needed resource. -- Rian Thum * Times Literary Supplement * Written with a journalistic sensibility whilst drawing on a wide variety of sources. The work is a helpful primer on Xinjiang's history and its relationship with the Chinese state. It provides illuminating context on how things reached the current pass. * Asian Affairs * As someone who has extensively travelled in the region for 15 years, Holdstock's book gives us a rare glimpse into the land and its people, and how the policies of the Chinese state have led to an extreme sense of alienation among the Uyghurs, with some of them turning to radical steps and violence. * Gulf News * 'China's repressive policy towards its Islamic fringe has badly backfired - there was no Islamic extremism in China until Beijing inadvertently created it, according to Nick Holdstock's measured history of the Uighurs of Xinjiang. * Spectator * In China's Forgotten People, the Edinburgh-based writer Nick Holdstock sets out to 'reveal truth from facts' in Xinjiang, to appropriate one of the Communist Party's pet phrases. Holdstock's central contention is that there is little proof of either organised Islamic terrorism or widespread separatist agitation in Xinjiang, where he used to live. Instead, the spiralling violence witnessed over the past few years is itself a reaction to repressive government policies put in place to control 'terrorism' - a self-fulfilling prophecy that is, tragically, now inciting the real thing...He is admirably even-handed... This meticulously researched book is anything but a crude exercise in China-bashing. -- Tom Miller, Author of 'China's Urban Billions'