This is a sort of a pre-review in the sense that Mark Kitto’s book
The format is basically English entrepreneur builds it all up from nothing, loses it all, retains his sense of humour and maintains his sang froid in the face of a nastily vengeful Communist bureaucracy only to discover another life post-Shanghai bandit capitalism on a mountaintop retreat where he starts another seemingly successful business with a determinedly slower pace of life and finds a modicum of contentment. It’s not a new theme, but it is a good one worth returning to and right now many who’ve spent the last few years slaving for the corporate machine to achieve next to nothing should warm to it.
But this is a history blog so I’m going to focus on that aspect of the book. Even if you couldn’t care less about a bloke named Kitto who got screwed and then started a hotel (which is rather nice – click here ) in the godforsaken countryside that most of us don’t care much for, China Cuckoo is effectively the first history in English of the Moganshan resort about 60km outside Hangzhou, a mini Swiss Alps in the middle of China.
Moganshan is a classic hill retreat but has often been overlooked in books about hill stations in
Moganshan was always officially Chinese territory though the treaty porters of
Plenty of others I’m sure will review the book and I think it’ll be only the usual professionally churlish, jealous and trash-for-trashings-sake reviewers who will not like it. I’ll leave the professionals to do the reviewing but thought it worth noting that this is a useful read for those with a
Sorry I don’t have any old photos of Moganshan in my collection – but Kitto has put some on his site