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The Mongol Empire: Genghis Khan, his heirs and the founding of modern China [Kindle Edition]

John Man
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £9.99
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Book Description

Genghis Khan is one of history's immortals: a leader of genius, driven by an inspiring vision for peaceful world rule. Believing he was divinely protected, Genghis united warring clans to create a nation and then an empire that ran across much of Asia.



Under his grandson, Kublai Khan, the vision evolved into a more complex religious ideology, justifying further expansion. Kublai doubled the empire's size until, in the late 13th century, he and the rest of Genghis’s ‘Golden Family’ controlled one fifth of the inhabited world. Along the way, he conquered all China, gave the nation the borders it has today, and then, finally, discovered the limits to growth.



Genghis's dream of world rule turned out to be a fantasy. And yet, in terms of the sheer scale of the conquests, never has a vision and the character of one man had such an effect on the world.



Charting the evolution of this vision, John Man provides a unique account of the Mongol Empire, from young Genghis to old Kublai, from a rejected teenager to the world’s most powerful emperor.


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Review

"Wonderful... what sets it apart is the way the tale is told. Quirky digressions and fascinating anecdotes pepper a narrative of wonderful dramatic energy." (Gerard DeGroot The Times)

"Excellent and profoundly committed ... Man provides a vivid, lucid and economical picture. A worthy addition to the burgeoning popular literature on the centaurs of the steppes." (Frank McLynn Literary Review)

"[Man] does a splendid job of conveying the sheer opulence and grandeur... [and tells] a rollicking good story, his historical narrative interspersed with high-spirited travel-writerly digressions. Lively and engaging." (Justin Marozzi The Spectator)

"A very lively and enjoyable book." (Peter Lewis Daily Mail)

"One could not wish for a better storyteller or analyst than John Man." (Simon Sebag Montefiore)

Book Description

The untold story of the world’s greatest empire and the creation of modern China

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More About the Author

JOHN MAN

"The Lion's Share", just published on Kindle, is a new edition of a thriller written years ago about the 'real' - in quotes, i.e. fictional - fate of Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia.

Since writing the original, I have focused mainly on non-fiction, exploring interests in Central Asia and turning-points in written communication. I like to mix history, narrative and personal experience, exploring the places I write about. It brings things to life, and it's also probably to do with escaping a secure, rural childhood in Kent. I did German and French at Oxford, and two postgraduate courses, History and Philosophy of Science at Oxford and Mongolian at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London (to join an expedition that never happened).

After working in journalism and publishing, I turned to writing, with occasional forays into film, TV and radio. A planned trilogy on three major revolutions in writing has resulted in two books, "Alpha Beta" (on the alphabet) and "The Gutenberg Revolution" (on printing), both republished in 2009. The third, on the origin of writing, is on hold, because it depends on access to Iraq. (There's a fourth revolution, the Internet, about which many others can write far better than me).

My interest in Mongolia revived in 1996 with a trip to the Gobi. "Gobi: Tracking the Desert" was the first book on the region since those by the American explorer Roy Chapman Andrew in the 1920's. As anyone quickly discovers in Mongolia, everything leads back to Genghis. The result was "Genghis Khan: Life, Death and Resurrection," now in 20 languages, and (from 2011) in a new, revised edition. Luckily, there's more to Mongol studies than Genghis. "Attila the Hun" and "Kublai Khan" followed.

Another main theme in Mongol history is the ancient and modern relationship between Mongolia and China. "The Terracotta Army" was followed by "The Great Wall". "The Leadership Secrets of Genghis Khan" (combining history and modern leadership theory) and "Xanadu: Marco Polo and Europe's Discovery of the East" pretty much exhausted Inner Asian themes for me.

So recently I have become interested in Japan. For "Samurai: The Last Warrior", I followed in the footsteps of Saigo Takamori, the real Last Samurai, published in February 2011. After that, more fiction, perhaps.

I live in north London, inspired by a multi-talented, strong and beautiful family - wife, children and grand-children.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyed this book 22 Feb. 2015
Format:Hardcover
Really enjoyed this book. Obviously it is a huge subject and this book could simply be read as an intro into the subject. For me it gave me a grounding on what the Mongols were all about. On the back of this I will most certainly read more on this empire and its people. Highly recommend.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Phenominal Genghis 17 Sept. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I liked the book but the sheer scale and breadth of it probably means I could read it two or three times to fully absorb the detail. What an amazing man Genghis was, what an astonishing legacy and what an amazing empire.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars 28 Oct. 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Excellent read. Very well researched by John Man who obviously knows his subject.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 8 Feb. 2015
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Easy to read with the events presented in an easy to digest way. I am thoroughly enjoying the read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars he enjoyed reading 7 Mar. 2015
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
bought for my husband,he enjoyed reading it
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 13 July 2015
By P. Bird
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
very interesting book
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Should be mandatory reading for all western politicians one man starts to pursue his dream of domination and swept all before him chilling parallels with whats happening with isis
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 9 Aug. 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Well written discussion of the development of Eurasia. People and events came alive on the page.
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