Welcome!

Enrich Your Travels with Longitude

We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.

SIGN UP FOR

Longitude News

Get our monthly e-mail update

GET A

Catalog

The Best of China

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

  • E-MAIL
  • PRINT

Kids

Books for

Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXCHN560. Buy these 4 items as a set for $74 including shipping, 15% off the retail price.
With free shipping on anything else you order.

ADD SET
TO BOOKBAG

Wild Swans, Three Daughters of China

Wild Swans, Three Daughters of China

by Jung Chang

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 524 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

In this riveting tale of three generations spanning the end of Old China, Mao's regime and the Japanese occupation, Chang chronicles the enormous changes in China since 1929. (CHN04, $18.00)

Giant Pandas

Giant Pandas

by John Seidensticker | Susan Lumpkin

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 2007
  • PAPER
  • 186 PAGES

An informative, family-friendly overview of the natural history, conservation and habitats of Central China's giant pandas. With 200 color photographs, many taken in Sichuan. (CHN456, $19.95)

Understanding China

Understanding China

by John Bryan Starr

  • HISTORY
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 400 PAGES

A Yale professor's essential primer on the history, politics and economy of China. A succinct and refreshingly forthright best-selling guide, this third edition brings us right up to date with events in the rapidly evolving nation. (CHN196, $17.95)

Eyewitness Guide Beijing and Shanghai

Eyewitness Guide Beijing and Shanghai

by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 240 PAGES

This superb guide features color photography, excellent maps and a neighborhood-by-neighborhood overview of each city. (CHN385, $23.00)

 
Culture Smart! China

Culture Smart! China


by Kathy Flower

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 168 PAGES

This is a handy guide to local customs, etiquette and culture. (CHN434, $9.95)

Eyewitness Guide China

Eyewitness Guide China


by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 660 PAGES

This hefty illustrated guide to sites, attractions and places throughout China features excellent maps and hundreds of color photographs and site diagrams. (CHN242, $30.00)

Odyssey Guide Beijing & Shanghai

Odyssey Guide Beijing & Shanghai


by Paul Mooney | Peter Hibbard

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 608 PAGES

Jammed with photographs, maps and great information on culture and history, this colorful guide introduces the two cities with style. (CHN228, $27.95)

A Traveller's History of China

A Traveller's History of China


by Stephen G. Haw

  • HISTORY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 310 PAGES

An admirably brief, lively history of China from early origins to today. With a historical gazetteer, chronology and list of dynasties. (CHN43, $14.95)

Postcards from Tomorrow Square

Postcards from Tomorrow Square


by James Fallows

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

Ranging from politics to society and business, these richly observed, candid essays capture the complexity, tumult and promise of modern China. A correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly, where these essays first appeared, Fallows and his wife moved to China in 2006. (CHN559, $15.00)

Shanghai, The Rise and Fall of the Decadent City 1842-1949

Shanghai, The Rise and Fall of the Decadent City 1842-1949


by Stella Dong

  • HISTORY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 318 PAGES

A riveting portrait of "the most pleasure-mad, rapacious, corrupt, strife-ridden, licentious, squalid and decadent city in the world." (CHN128, $15.99)

The Forbidden City

The Forbidden City


by Geremie R. Barme | Mary Beard

  • HISTORY
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

A compact, elegant volume in Harvard's excellent Wonders of the World series, this pocket history illuminates the culture, mystique, architecture and politics of imperial Beijing. Fittingly, the book opens with Mao's symbolic address from the Gate of Heavenly Peace. (CHN468, $16.00)

The Terra Cotta Army, China's First Emperor and the Birth of a Nation

The Terra Cotta Army, China's First Emperor and the Birth of a Nation


by John Man

  • HISTORY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

Man recounts the 1974 discovery of the 8,000 terra cotta soldiers and uses the legend, lore and facts associated with Emperor Qin's Tomb to speculate about the mysterious emperor himself. (CHN518, $16.95)

The Arts of China

The Arts of China


by Michael Sullivan

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 352 PAGES

A lively survey of Chinese visual arts and culture through the ages, thoroughly illustrated and accessible. With a new chapter on the 20th century and beyond, this fifth edition covers bronzes, ceramics, painting and architecture from the Neolithic to now. (CHN16, $41.95)

A Comrade Lost and Found, A Beijing Story

A Comrade Lost and Found, A Beijing Story


by Jan Wong

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2010
  • PAPER
  • 336 PAGES
  • NEW

Jan Wong (Red China Blues) returns to Beijing, with her husband and reluctant teenage sons in tow, on a mission to find a classmate she wronged decades ago at Beijing University. (CHN547, $14.95)

Country Driving

Country Driving


by Peter Hessler

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 480 PAGES

Opening with an eventful 7,000-mile road trip across northern China, Peter Hessler (River Town, Oracle Bones) shows the absurdity, humor and hope of China in this latest portrait of a nation catapulted into the modern world. (CHN600, $15.99)

Dreaming in Chinese, Mandarin Lessons in Life, Love, and Language

Dreaming in Chinese, Mandarin Lessons in Life, Love, and Language


by Deborah Fallows

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 208 PAGES

A linguist, living in Shanghai and Beijing with her journalist-husband James (Postcards from Tomorrow Square) the exuberant Deborah Fallows illuminates the Chinese worldview through language in playful, anecdotal essays, documenting her own missteps and growing understanding with self-deprecating humor. (CHN648, $14.00)

Mao Zedong

Mao Zedong


by Jonathan Spence

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 192 PAGES

Yale sinologist, writer and historian Spence tracks the life of the architect of the People's Republic from his provincial upbringing to his savage three-decade rule. (CHN66, $15.00)

The Last Days of Old Beijing, Tales from the New City

The Last Days of Old Beijing, Tales from the New City


by Michael Meyer

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 368 PAGES

Meyer's lovely memoir of the hutong (ancient lane) where he taught school captures the rhythms, traditions and spirit of Beijing's traditional neighborhoods south of Tiananmen. (CHN493, $18.00)

China, A Traveler's Literary Companion

China, A Traveler's Literary Companion


by Kirk Denton

  • ANTHOLOGY
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 231 PAGES

An introduction both to China's finest modern writers and its diverse cultures, concerns and landscapes, organized geographically. (CHN520, $14.95)

Death of a Red Heroine

Death of a Red Heroine


by Qiu Xiaolong

  • MYSTERY
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 464 PAGES

In this marvelously evocative tale of Shanghai, tremendously informative about China's transition towards a market economy in the 1990s, Inspector Chen of the Shanghai Police must find the murderer of a National Model Worker in this award-winning debut. The series continues with A Loyal Character Dancer (CHN412). (CHN374, $15.95)

Empress Orchid

Empress Orchid


by Anchee Min

  • LITERATURE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 346 PAGES

In this novel of the glorious, decadent last days of 19th-century Imperial China, Min (Red Azalea, Becoming Madame Mao) combines her tale of a young girl from the provinces who marries an emperor -- and then improbably becomes the Last Empress -- with a lovingly re-created portrait of life in the Forbidden City. (CHN267, $14.00)

The Way of the Panda

The Way of the Panda


by Henry Nicholls

  • NATURAL HISTORY
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

Nicholls, whose previous book was on the Galapagos tortoise, here turns to the panda as a powerful political and cultural symbol for modern China as well as for conservation. (CHN673, $15.95)

Chinese Wildlife

Chinese Wildlife


by Martin Walters

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 208 PAGES

This compact introduction to birds, mammals, reptiles, insects and plants found from the Tibetan plateau to the deserts, tropical forests and mountains includes 200 color photographs. (CHN440, $26.99)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.