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Jeremy Haft’s: All the Tea in China—BOOK REVIEW

All the Tea in China is a 21st century version of Mr. China—and in a handy “how to” format to boot!  Jeremy Haft has taken all his lumps and learning in China and distilled them down to a 200 page “how-to” on getting started in China.  (By the way, if you’ve not read Tim Clissold’s Mr. China, you really should.  Here’s my review.)

Haft’s All the Tea in China is one of the unique books that meet all of my requirements for a great book: it’s entertaining, it’s informative and it’s useful!  I found myself nodding in agreement, laughing out loud and underlining and dog-earing pages like crazy throughout the entire book.

Haft’s descriptions of his lessons learned in China are not just entertaining but enlightening–which is were the rubber hits the road.  What Haft does in All the Tea, that Mr. China did not, is to take the lessons that he learned the hard way and make the usable to others trying to walk the same paths.  Haft provides specific instructions, work flow charts, and lists of processes and documents that are immediately usable for anyone working with China.

The usefulness factor is what makes this book better than just a collection of great stories or a to-do list from the BBB.  Haft goes to lengths to specifically details what he or others should do or should have done to get it done right the first time.  It’s all written quite succinctly too—less than 200 pages and each section is valuable because its applicability.

I don’t know for why its so much fun to commiserate with others who have lost (and gained) so much in China.  But as I identify with both the headaches and solutions that Haft shares here it’s some comfort to know that I’m not crazy—others, like Haft, have really been here too and you can tell by the stories he shares.  It’s also great for the resources that are designed specifically to help new comers to China learn the lessons of the past without having to go through it all themselves.

A quick first read, but a very useful book that you’ll come back to over and over.  I recommend it!