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Party of One

Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781472158512

Price: £25

ON SALE: 24th October 2023

Genre: Humanities / History / Regional & National History / Asian History

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‘Compelling and informative… a useful gateway into [Xi Jinping’s] mind’ Rana Mitter, Literary Review

From one of the most admired reporters covering China today, a vital new account of the life and political vision of Xi Jinping, the authoritarian leader of the People’s Republic whose hard-edged tactics have set the rising superpower on a collision with Western liberal democracies.

Party of One: The Rise of Xi Jinping and China’s Superpower Future shatters the many myths and caricatures that shroud one of the world’s most secretive political organizations and its leader. Many observers misread Xi during his early years in power, projecting their own hopes that he would steer China toward more political openness, rule of law, and pro-market economics. Having masked his beliefs while climbing the party hierarchy, Xi has centralized decision-making powers, encouraged a personality cult around himself, and moved toward indefinite rule by scrapping presidential term limits-stirring fears of a return to Mao-style dictatorship. Today, the party of Xi favors political zeal over technical expertise, trumpets its faith in Marxism, and proclaims its reach into every corner of Chinese society with Xi portraits and hammer-and-sickle logos. Under Xi, China has challenged Western preeminence in global affairs and cast its authoritarian system as a model of governance worthy of international emulation.

As a China reporter for the Wall Street Journal, Chun Han Wong has chronicled Xi’s hardline strategy for crushing dissent and his political repression in Hong Kong and Xinjiang. Wong spent five years in Beijing before the Chinese government forced him to leave mainland China in 2019, after which he moved to Hong Kong and continued writing about Xi’s leadership. Now, Wong has drawn on his years of first-hand reporting across China to create a lucid and historically-rooted account of China’s leader, and how he inspires fear and fervor in his party, his nation, and beyond.

Timely, revelatory, and important, Party of One explains how the future Xi imagines for China will reshape the future of the entire world.


An authoritative, clear-minded study . . . A penetrating and timely unraveling of the personality and impact of a strongman president
Kirkus (starred review)
Meticulously researched... Wong is a sharp observer of soft authoritarian power and the apparatus of the absolutist state
Michael Sheridan, Sunday Times
Party of One brims with insights into the multitude of contradictions that make up Xi's China. It's a captivating read for anyone seeking to more deeply understand China in the Xi Jinping era.
Bonnie Glaser
"In a crowded marketplace of books about Xi Jinping's China, Party of One stands head and shoulders above its competitors. Chun Han Wong has combined rigorous investigative skills with a forensic grasp of an opaque political system to produce an enthralling portrait of the leader, and the party, that sits atop the world's emerging superpower."
Richard McGregor, author of 'The Party' and 'Asia's Reckoning'
Compelling and informative... Wong's thoughtful book is a useful gateway into [Xi Jinping's] mind
Rana Mitter, Literary Review
More than a decade into the era of Xi Jinping, readers ask, 'Why are there so few penetrating books on China's leader?' The answer is that the Communist Party deems even Xi's birth date too sensitive to disclose. But now, the skilled and energetic journalist Chun Han Wong has drawn on an impressive range of reporting and sources to craft a superb, readable, illuminating portrait of the man and his times. A must-read for China veterans and amateurs alike
Evan Osnos