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This episode of Ten Minute History (like a documentary, only shorter) covers the situation in the Eastern Steppe and the inter-tribal warfare there which saw the ascendancy of the Mongols. Led by Genghis Khan they waged a series of wars which over the course of decades saw the Mongol Empire become the largest contiguous empire in all of human history. Of course, the empire soon fell into civil war and from that came Khubilai Khan, whose policies earned him a reputation as a skilled and competent ruler.
John Man - The Mongol Empire: Genghis Khan, His Heirs and the Founding of Modern China. This book is a fantastic detailed overview of the empire and the Yuan dynasty. Has a great chapter on the Mongol's legacy.
Morris Rossabi - The Mongols: A Very Short Introduction. I always recommend these books but that's because they're great. This one has some issues with its structure but for its price point it's phenomenal.