From 1954 until Mao Zedong's death 22 years later. Dr. Li Zhisui was the Chinese ruler's personal physician. For most of these years, Mao was in excellent health; thus he and the doctor had time to discuss political and personal matters. Dr. Li recorded many of these conversations in his diaries, as well as in his memory. In this book, Dr. Li ...Read MoreFrom 1954 until Mao Zedong's death 22 years later. Dr. Li Zhisui was the Chinese ruler's personal physician. For most of these years, Mao was in excellent health; thus he and the doctor had time to discuss political and personal matters. Dr. Li recorded many of these conversations in his diaries, as well as in his memory. In this book, Dr. Li vividly reconstructs his extraordinary time with Chairman Mao. of illustrations.Read Less
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Shocking, startling and stunning barely describe this biography by Mao ZeDong's longtime personal physician. Wow, what a bombshell. China under Mao was similar to Rome during it's decline and fall. Mao was a sex-crazed emperor, his wife a neurotic nutcase, his mistress and alcoholic, his top aides backstabbing syncophants, and the Communist Party, an elite group of sex-crazed men living in luxury while the masses starved.
Sex, power and palace intrique were the only concerns of Mao and his entourage, It is difficult to comprehend how or why the United States painted China as an evil empire when the Chinese leaders were no different than the ruling class in many other countries. And, obviously after reading this book, you realized the CIA was clueless about the state of affairs in China.
This biography is absolutely amazing as doctor Li reprises Chinese leaders using government funds to purchase hair restoration potions from Japan, movies from Hong Kong, and luxury goods. Plus, the endless sexual escapades of Mao and his top lieutenants and the subsequent "secret" abortions for their concubines.
If you think Lindsey Lohan or Britney Spears are decadent then you are in for a shock. This book makes tabloid newspapers seem like third-rate gossip sheets. In retrospect it is obvious why Mao and Dick Nixon liked each other: both were power-crazed dictators, only concerned about their critics and legacy regardless of laws. This is the story of Julius Caesar simply updated to contempary China. The only difference is Mao managed to avoid assassination by one of his trusted aides.
I cannot think of a more startling and entertaining book. It is simply addictive and far suprasses "You'll Never Eat Lunch In This Town Again," by Julia Phillips. Perhaps, someday, we will get the inside story on John Kennedy, Ron Reagan, Bill Clinton or George Bush, Jr. However, I doubt that any have led a life of decadence that begins to rival that of Chairman Mao.
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