The White Road
  • The White Road

  • Edmund de Waal

    ** A Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller **

    "Other things in the world are white but for me porcelain comes first"

    A handful of clay from a Chinese hillside carries a promise: that mixed with the right materials, it might survive the fire of the kiln, and fuse into porcelain – translucent, luminous, white.

    Acclaimed writer and potter Edmund de Waal sets out on a quest - a journey that begins in the dusty city of Jingdezhen in China and travels on to Venice, Versailles, Dublin, Dresden, the Appalachian Mountains of South Carolina and the hills of Cornwall to tell the history of porcelain. Along the way, he meets the witnesses to its creation; those who were inspired, made rich or heartsick by it, and the many whose livelihoods, minds and bodies were broken by this obsession. It spans a thousand years and reaches into some of the most tragic moments of recent times.

    In these intimate and compelling encounters with the people and landscapes who made porcelain, Edmund de Waal enriches his understanding of this rare material, the ‘white gold’ he has worked with for decades.

    ** Book of the Week on BBC Radio 4 **

Edmund de Waal is an artist whose porcelain is exhibited in museums and galleries around the world. His bestselling memoir, The Hare with the Amber Eyes, won the RSL Ondaatje prize and the Costa Biography Award and in 2015 he was awarded the Windham-Campbell prize for non-fiction by Yale University. He lives in London with his family. www.edmunddewaal.com