BookBrowse Reviews The Man Who Loved China by Simon Winchester

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Man Who Loved China

The Fantastic Story of the Eccentric Scientist Who Unlocked the Mysteries of the Middle Kingdom

By Simon Winchester

The Man Who Loved China
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Hardcover: May 2008,
    336 pages.
    Paperback: May 2009,
    416 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

Simon Winchester brings to life the extraordinary story of Joseph Needham, the brilliant Cambridge scientist who unlocked the most closely held secrets of China

Simon Winchester's latest work explores the life of Joseph Needham. His subject is a fascinating one. Born in 1900, Needham can be termed nothing less than an eccentric genius. He was well-known in the British scientific community for his work in biochemistry even before he turned his attention to China. His peers were referring to him as the Erasmus of the twentieth century by the time he was 24. He published Chemical Embryology when 31, which is considered a classic and which eventually led to his election as a fellow of the Royal Society. He was also notorious for his wide range of odd interests and for being quite the womanizer.

Winchester contends that Needham was a pivotal figure in the West's understanding of Chinese history and its contributions to science. Before Needham, China was thought to be "backward, cruel, rigid," as well as ignorant and ...

Interesting Links

  • A brief video of Simon Winchester talking about Joseph Needham.
  • A history of the Second Sino-Japanese War.
  • A short biography of Needham at the Needham Research Institute.

Members Only

BookBrowse's reviews and backstories are a members-only benefit. Full information is available on books for a limited time when they are featured as "Editor's Choices" - but that time has now elapsed for this book.

click to join
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Gemini
    Gemini
    by Carol Cassella
    How good is Gemini, Carol Cassella's book about a Seattle intensive care physician who becomes ...
  • Book Jacket: The Goldfinch
    The Goldfinch
    by Donna Tartt
    Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer for Fiction.

    Her canvas is vast. To frame a story about art, love and ...
  • Book Jacket: Toms River
    Toms River
    by Dan Fagin
    Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction

    In Toms River, investigative journalist Dan Fagin ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
by Gabrielle Zevin

Published Apr. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  254Cartwheel:
    Jennifer duBois
  2.  143Happier at Home:
    Gretchen Rubin

All Discussions

Who Said...

In order to become the master, the politician poses as the servant

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

P Your O C

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.