Marina Warner

Indigo or Mapping The Waters


Chatto & Windus, London 1992
Translated into Dutch, German, French
Vintage (paperback) UK
Simon & Schuster US

Inspired by The Tempest, Indigo traces the scars of colonialism across continents, family blood-lines and three centuries.
Rich, sensual and magical in its use of myths and farytales Indigo explores the intertwined histories of the Everard family and the imaginary Caribbean island where Ariel, Caliban, and his mother, the healer and dyer of indigo, Sycorax once lived.

A PDF of Derek Walcott’s hand-written introduction can be read here.

On ‘I Browse Books’Indigo is listed on their ‘1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die’ 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2012 editions:


‘Her prose has never been so lyrical, as she yokes Shakespearean references, colonial history and her own sensual experience of the Caribbean with a powerful myth-making.’

The Independent

‘A complex and glittering book’

The Times

‘Indigo explores the nature of power, the human cost of Empire and the theme of dislocation…vivid, gripping, intelligent.’

The Independent on Sunday

‘An extraordinary imaginative achievement’

Times Literary Supplement

Other editions

First published by Chatto & Windus, 1992