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The definitive illustrated edition of the international bestseller with gorgeous new photography of the celebrated netsuke collection, and sumptuous full-colour images hand-picked by Edmund de Waal from his family archive
264 Japanese wood and ivory carvings, none of them bigger than a matchbox: Edmund de Waal was entranced when he first encountered the collection in his great-uncle Iggie's Tokyo apartment. When he later inherited the 'netsuke', they unlocked a story far larger and more dramatic than he could ever have imagined.
From a burgeoning empire in Odessa to fin de siècle Paris, from occupied Vienna to post-war Tokyo, Edmund de Waal traces the netsuke's journey through generations of his remarkable family against the backdrop of a tumultuous century.
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Part treasure hunt, part family saga, Edmund de Waal's richly original memoir spans nearly two centuries... Combines all the charm of a personal memoir with the resonance of world history. - Evening Standard
The most brilliant book I've read for years... A rich tale of the pleasure and pains of what it is to be human - Daily Telegraph
As full of beauty and whimsy as a netsuke from the hands of a master carver - The Economist
A meditation on touch, exile, space and the responsibility of inheritance... You have in your hands a masterpiece - Sunday Times
Few writers have ever brought more perception, wonder and dignity to a family story as has Edward de Waal - Irish Times
An intensely personal meditation on art, history and family, told in prose as elegant and precise as the netsuke themselves. - London Review of Books
A complex and beautiful book - Literary Review
Both the story he uncovers and the objects he describes are fascinating and startling - Financial Times
Unexpectedly combines a micro craft-form with macro history to great effect - Guardian
The best book of the year... a memorable account, written with exemplary modesty - Spectator
Edmund de Waal is one of the world's leading ceramic artists, and his porcelain is held in many major museum collections.His bestselling memoir, The Hare with Amber Eyes won the Costa Biography Award and the RSL Ondaatje Prize. It was also shortlisted for the Duff Cooper Prize, the Jewish Quarterly Wingate Prize, the PEN/Ackerley Prize and the Southbank Sky Arts Award for Literature. It was longlisted for the Orwell Prize and BBC Samuel Johnson Prize. Edmund was named New Writer of the Year at the 2010 Galaxy National Book Awards.