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This review is from: The Party: The Secret World of China's Communist Rulers (Hardcover)I have read a great many books about China over the last 2-3 years and this is one of the best. It provides some excellent insights into the relationship between the state and commerce in the world's fastest growing econonmy (although India isn't far behind), as well as the centrality of the state in other aspects of Chinese life. I particularly enjoyed the blend of anecdote and analysis, something which lesser writers often fail to get right, thus undermining the quality and rigour of the central thesis. Anyone who believes that countries such as China will morph into a clone of a typical western democracy, because they believe this is the only way free-market capitalism will work, should read this book. Richard McGregor's analysis of China's poltical system is revalatory. He is excellent at highlighting the tensions within the political system and the extent to which the future of the country's political system is inextricably linked to how it develops (or is allowed to develop) its economy. This is a must if you want a much better understanding of how China has been able to transform its economy.