The book elucidates the Chinese perception of India through two texts from the Song and Ming periods. It aims to understand how the change in Sino-Indian relations is reflected in Chinese perceptions and representations of India in the medieval period. The two texts are the Zhufanzhi or ‘Description of Barbarous Peoples' compiled by the Song official Zhau Rugua in 1225 C.E, and the Yingyai shenglan jiao or ‘The Overall Survey of the Ocean’s Shores’ compiled from 1425-32 C.E. by Ma Huan who participated in the great naval expeditions led by Zheng He in the Ming period. The book highlights that the image of India carried in Chinese literature from the 13th to 15th centuries began to change from that of the land of Buddhism to a place of commercial significance for the Chinese. In a spatial sense, it is the coastal regions of India with their small principalities that are of greater interest to the Chinese than the northern or central regions with their powerful states that were better known in earlier times, reflecting the increased importance of Chinese sea power and the maritime trade routes.