> Recommended Reading List

Recommended Reading List

Following books are recommended by CBW's chief editor who has personally reviewed dozens of books on the topics. The list is deliberately kept short, as she understands a busy person like you wants only the best, not the rest. However, if you know there is an excellent book that is overlooked here, do please drop a line and let her know. Admittedly this list is somewhat biased toward books available in the United States where she works. Books with highlighted titles are available through Amazon, CBW's recommended online bookstore.


  • Travel Planning Online For Dummies
    A general guide to how to avoid pitfalls, take advantage of the deals and convenience of planning travel online. Good for people not familiar with the Internet and its pro's and con's.
  • Fodor's China, Exploring China
    All Fodor Guides are the editor's recommendations. They are concise, up-to-date and have excellent coverage on culture and history.

  • Fodor's Citypack Shanghai, Fodor's Citypack Beijing, Fodor's Citypack Hong Kong
    Compact book with pull-out maps.
  • Discovery Channel¡ªChina Insight Guide
    Available at the Border's regular stores, but not online through Amazon.
  • Lonely Planet
    In addition to its accurate coverage of major travel locations, I particularly like the map with names of tourism attractions written in Chinese characters.
  • Let's Go China by Budget Travel
    If you're a budget traveler, check this out!
    Accurate, thorough, saves you money!
  • Passport China by World Travel Press
    Its very compact size is a key forte. A little old (1996) but still quite useful. Includes information on business customs and etiquette.
  • China By Rail by Trailblazer
    If you want to be a traveller, not a tourist in China, this book is for you. China's railroads run through the countrysides and heartlands, where you can watch the more genuine China galloping past your window.
  • Special Interests

    • The Treasures and Pleasures Of China by Impact Guides:
      For those die hard shoppers, don't leave home without it!
      Covers Beijing, Shanghai, Xi'an, Chongqing, the Yangtze River, Guangzhou, and Shenzhen. Covers upscale boutiques to a hole-in-the-wall type of shops.
    • China For Women by The Feminist Press (1995)
      You don't have to be a feminist to enjoy this book.
      It presents a woman-oriented discussion of Chinese travel, culture, history, politics and contemporary life.
    • Culture Shock (1991) by Graphic Arts Center Publishing Co. Authored by By Kevin Sinclair and Iris Wong Po-Yee
      Presents thorough and poignant coverage of the cultural differences. I particularly recommend it to the business travelers.
    • China Bound (1994)
      Most useful for people going to China to teach, study, or do research. The book is quite old (1994), but still provides insights to the do's and do not's in China. Another oldie but goodie.
    • Alone on the Great Wall --
      One lone ranger to save and protect the Great Wall. By William Lindsey, also a CBW contributor. His web site is at

    Other recommendations:
    (The editor has not personally read them but would like to recommend them all the same based on other people's recommendation and the book reviews.)

    • Adopting in China
      Real life experiences of a couple whom has been through the adoption process in China. A very practical guide and touching account of emotional personal experiences.