Richard Spencer in The Telegraph:
China has a strange image in the West. It is seen as remote and not really comprehensible. As such, the things that are strangest about it are sometimes accepted as part of its difference, even defended. The one-child policy is a curiosity; there is a tendency to believe the Chinese government’s claim that however undesirable, it has been necessary: ren tai duo – too many people. The Communist Party says the whole world should be grateful for this self-sacrifice, says it has prevented the births of 400 million people, a number that would have put a strain on not just China’s economic resources but the earth’s environmental ones.
One of the principal merits of this book is Fong’s demolition of this hocus-pocus. She describes in turn the extraordinarily violent methods with which the policy has been enforced, interviewing victims of compulsory sterilisation, forced abortion, and the theft of babies to be sold into adoption; and expert statistical analysis showing that the effect on population has been much less than claimed – most likely 100, or at most 200 million lives not lived, a small percentage of China’s 1.4 billion, hardly worth the suffering.