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The New Silk Roads

The Present and Future of the World
Written by: Peter Frankopan
Narrated by: Leighton Pugh
Length: 6 hrs and 44 mins
4 out of 5 stars (15 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

From the best-selling author of The Silk Roads comes an updated, timely, and visionary book about the dramatic and profound changes our world is undergoing right now - as seen from the perspective of the rising powers of the East.

"All roads used to lead to Rome. Today they lead to Beijing." So argues Peter Frankopan in this revelatory new book.

In the age of Brexit and Trump, the West is buffeted by the tides of isolationism and fragmentation. Yet to the East, this is a moment of optimism as a new network of relationships takes shape along the ancient trade routes. In The New Silk Roads, Peter Frankopan takes us on an eye-opening journey through the region, from China's breathtaking infrastructure investments to the flood of trade deals among Central Asian republics to the growing rapprochement between Turkey and Russia. This important book asks us to put aside our preconceptions and see the world from a new - and ultimately hopeful - perspective.

©2019 Peter Frankopan (P)2019 Random House Audio

What the critics say

"Provocative reading for students of geopolitical and economic trends looking for a glimpse at the new world to come." (Kirkus)

“Masterly mapping out of a new world order...Peter Frankopan has gone up in the world since his best-selling Silk Roads history was published to great acclaim in 2015 - and deservedly so.” (Justin Marozzi, Evening Standard

“Frankopan has written another valuable and idiosyncratic book. He has the gift of perspective - the capacity to see the wood for the trees - which he combines with a Tolstoyan knack for weaving little details into the broader sweep of human affairs.” (Jamie Susskind, The Daily Telegraph

“Frankopan is a brilliant guide to terra incognita.” (Niall Ferguson, Sunday Times

What members say

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • MindinMotion
  • 2019-05-27

A metaphor for Asian trade, not the road itself

An interesting discussion of foreign trade, politics and military issues especially in Asia, however, it takes the Silk Road more as a metaphor than an actual Chinese program of interconnected links, describing the strategy behind the total system. I didn't care for the style of the reader but that is a personal taste.

3 people found this helpful

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  • A. M.
  • 2019-11-01

A Tedious Political Romp Against America

Another leftist diatribe by a pontificating blowhard, no thanks.

You know you're listening to some unobjective rant when the author lambasts the US for "tearing children from their <illegal immigrant> families" but fails to register one complaint about the brutal human rights abuses and Orwellian construct by the Chinese themselves.

I'm so sick and tired of this leftist bias in everything. The title should be changed because it really has very little to do with the "Silk Roads." May I suggest "Sulking Toads"? If you want to understand China today then read the "China Vision" by Daniel Wagner or "On China" by Kissinger.

3 people found this helpful

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  • M. Tenny
  • 2019-10-04

If you read international news, you don’t need to read this book

If you have paid attention to international news since 2015 and care about international relations you will gain next-to-nothing from reading this book. It is a breakdown of fairly evident stuff, plus a bunch of Trump bashing for not maintaining America’s position in the world. At the beginning of the book Frankopan muses about how he wanted to add an appendix to his last book, but he realized there was too much information. I disagree. This information would have been more poignant as an appendage to his original work. It was not insightful or even really interesting as a stand alone book, especially when compared with “The Silk Roads”.

1 person found this helpful

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  • David L. Jones
  • 2020-03-06

Great picture of today's Silk Road

Enjoyed learning more about China and Russia's involvement along the Silk Road in particular. It all makes good sense. I also appreciate the candid view in the Trump administration policies. I share the concern about how poorly my country has handled relationships around the globe.

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  • Craig Doner
  • 2020-01-03

Good Followup to Silk Roafs

The two "Silk Road" volumes correct a long standing imbalance in world history which has tilted towards emphasizing the West at the expense of the East.

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  • Peekay
  • 2019-12-19

Not at par with The Silk Roads

I expected a book that would extend the author’s previous one. While this one discusses more recent events (up to summer 2018 or so), it does so more in a fashion of providing facts, rather than putting them within the framework of the historical ebb and flows caused by and observed at “the silk roads”. This book could be followed with another one in 4-5 years, with more updates and so on (which I would read, to be honest.)
It’s also heavy on facts and episodes known to everyone who follows US politics since 2016, to emphasize the lack of comprehensive US foreign policy, and contrast it with the approach of Russia & China.
Overall useful, but I found the previous one much more instructive and (even) fascinating.

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  • Mucho padre
  • 2019-12-11

Insightful

Marvelous book and well worth the price. Highly recommend the book to anyone who is intrigued

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  • Kristen Clark
  • 2019-09-28

Good information but very dense

This was a very interesting book and especially as a follow on to Frankopan’s first book, which I just finished. It was slightly off putting that the narrator for the two books was not the same but I got used to it eventually.

Great discussion of key interactions on the world stage at the time of publication. However, the material in this book is very dense and I had to listen twice to wrap my head around everything that was covered. Some books can be listened to while multitasking, this is not one of them.

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  • Teresa H-A
  • 2019-07-20

Thorough Coverage

Great analysis of the current shifts in the world economy and geopolitics, drawing upon numerous historical and contemporary examples. However, at times the book felt repetitive, addressing the same silk road themes multiple times but using different examples. This could have been intentional to drive home the messages presented in the text.

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  • Edmo11
  • 2019-07-02

Empires and their replacement

This book summarizes the rise of a new Silk Road between Asia and the west and the rise of Asia to a power that in a short will
Replace the west. All one has is to look at the rise of South Korea to become an industrial behemoth. That scene is repeated in India, China and Japan. I enjoyed reading this book and highly recommend it.