J. A. G. Roberts' A History of China is a pretty plain vanilla book of history. It's pretty well done for fitting 3500-4000 years of history into 327 pages. It's treatment of Mao is kinder than I liked - balance, not outright omissions - but for all its brutality in the 50s and early 60s, Mao & Co did get China off its ass economically (with substantial equipment, blueprints, and technical people aid from the USSR - Roberts says that it was probably the most extensive technology transfer in history).
A couple things I found interesting:
* Basically the core of China is the central area, less the ethnic "Autonomous Zones"; during most of imperial China those "Autonomous Zones" were peopled by non-Han Chinese ethnic groups who variously plagued or were partially dominated by the various imperial dynasties;
* From the 13th Century on, only one of the three ruling dynasties was Han Chinese, the Ming Dynasty, which ended in the 17th Century. The final dynasty, the Qing, was Manchu (the NE area near Korea).