God’s Chinese Son: The Taiping Heavenly Kingdom of Hong Xiuquan by Johnathan Spence
This is one of my favourite books, I’ve read it several times. This is the most recent time I’ve read it, just before a trip to China. The idea of the modification of christianity by the Taiping to suit Chinese forms seemed to draw a parallel with the modification of Marxism by Mao. But I can leave such ideas for the experts.
In China I was really interested to find that the Party revere the Taiping as proto-revolutionaries. I’d not expected that. It also made me really want to visit Nanjing, which was the Taiping capital, and where there is the major museum about the Taiping.