Doing business in China is one of those business reads only people with substantial BComs and MBAs will find amusing.
I approached the book with trepidation, seeing that I am a poor journo with no aspirations whatsoever of joining Koos Bekker in his quest for the East. To be honest, I just wasn't interested.
In theory the book makes sense: if you're an aspiring entrepreneur, with a spare hundred million or two in the bank, here's a book written by a Chinese expert that will help you break into the world's fastest growing market.
You see, that's where the book hits its first snag. It's aimed at big spenders. Not the SMMEs we're trying to grow in South Africa.
No, this book is for the Patrice Motsepes, Tokyo Sexwales and other big recipients of BEE.
So after casting aside my initial gripes, I jumped straight into the book and landed in a shallow puddle. I don't know the finance market well, so the book wasn't much help here.
I don't know the energy sector either. And these are two of the biggest opportunities in China highlighted in the book.
Yet to say that it was all bad is to overlook some of Plafker's nuggets. The man was, after all, a revered foreign correspondent there for more than 18 years. He gives his advice on the etiquette of the land and how to use the rampant corruption to one's advantage.
This book is for the businessman, entrepreneur and investor looking for that tempting slice of Chinese ching-a-ling.