In "Burying The Bones", distinguished biographer Hilary Spurling takes as her subject Pearl Buck, the highly influential American author whose astonishing life proved even more fantastic than her popular novels of the 1930s, 40s and 50s.
Born to Christian missionaries in 1890s China, Buck's writing helped change Western perceptions of that country forever; in recognition of which she won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1938.
Pearl's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel "The Good Earth" portrayed the lives of ordinary Chinese people and became a worldwide bestseller when it was published in 1932 (it still sells in its thousands each year). Though her work has fallen out of fashion with the public, she is still held in high regard by writers such as Jung Chang, the acclaimed author of "Wild Swans", who described Buck as "One of the greatest writers on China'".
Hilary Spurling is the author of "The Unknown Matisse", listed as one of the New York Times' Ten Best Books of 1998, and "Matisse The Master", which was named Whitbread Book of the Year, and won the Los Angeles Times biography prize, in 2005.
Reader: Lindsay Duncan.
Abridger: Alison Joseph.
Producer: Kirsteen Cameron.