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Mao: The Unknown Story

Jon Halliday Jung Chang

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Vintage
01 September 2009
Biography: general; History; Asian history; 20th century history: c 1900 to c 2000; Constitution: government & the state
Jung Chang's Wild Swans was an extraordinary bestseller throughout the world, selling more than 10 million copies and reaching a wider readership than any other book about China. Now she and her husband Jon Halliday have written a groundbreaking biography of Mao Tse-tung.

Based on a decade of research, and on interviews with many of Mao's close circle in China who have never talked before - and with virtually everyone outside China who had significant dealings with him - this is the most authoritative life of Mao ever written. It is full of startling revelations, exploding the myth of the Long March, and showing a completely unknown Mao- he was not driven by idealism or ideology; his intimate and intricate relationship with Stalin went back to the 1920s, ultimately bringing him to power; he welcomed Japanese occupation of much of China; and he schemed, poisoned and blackmailed to get his way. After Mao conquered China in 1949, his secret goal was to dominate the world. In chasing this dream he caused the deaths of 38 million people in the greatest famine in history.

Combining meticulous history with the story-telling style of Wild Swans, this biography makes immediate Mao's roller-coaster life, as he intrigued and fought every step of the way to force through his unpopular decisions. The reader enters the shadowy chambers of Mao's court, and eavesdrops on the drama in its hidden recesses. Mao's character and the enormity of his behaviour towards his wives, mistresses and children are unveiled for the first time.

This is an entirely fresh look at Mao in both content and approach. It will astonish historians and the general reader alike.
By:   Jon Halliday, Jung Chang
Imprint:   Vintage
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Edition:   New edition
Dimensions:   Height: 198mm,  Width: 129mm,  Spine: 45mm
Weight:   718g
ISBN:   9780099507376
ISBN 10:   0099507374
Pages:   992
Publication Date:   01 September 2009
Audience:   General/trade ,  Professional and scholarly ,  College/higher education ,  ELT Advanced ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Jung Chang is the author of the award-winning Wild Swans. Jon Halliday is a former Senior Visiting Research Fellow at King's College, University of London. He has written or edited eight previous books.

Reviews for Mao: The Unknown Story

A triumph. It is a mesmerising portrait of tyranny, degeneracy, mass murder and promiscuity, a barrage of revisionist bombshells, and a superb piece of research. This is the first intimate, political biography of the greatest monster of them all -- Simon Sebag Montefiore * Sunday Times * Devastating... Awesome... Mesmerising... The most powerful, compelling and revealing political biography of modern times. Few books are destined to change history, but this one will -- George Walden * Daily Mail * Chang and Halliday cast new and revealing light on nearly every episode in Mao's tumultuous life... Magnificent... It is a stupendous work -- Michael Yahuda * Guardian * This is a bombshell of a book... Jung Chang and Jon Halliday have done this extraordinary country a huge service with this book, which will one day be read as widely within China as it will deservedly be in the outside world -- Chris Patten * The Times * The first great political biography of the twenty-first century -- Frank Johnson * Spectator *


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