Released on 22 March 2012.

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Red Dust Road

3.83 based on 893 ratings & 126 reviews on

2011 Short-listed

National Book Awards Biography of the Year

2011 Short-listed

Scottish Book Awards Non-fiction Award

2011 Winner

Scottish Book Awards Book of the Year


With an introduction by the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon

‘Like the best memoirs, this one is written with novelistic and poetic flair. Red Dust Road is a fantastic, probing and heart-warming read’ Independent

From the moment when, as a little girl, she realizes that her skin is a different colour from that of her beloved mum and dad, to the tracing and finding of her birth parents, her Highland mother and Nigerian father, Jackie Kay’s journey in Red Dust Road is one of unexpected twists, turns and deep emotions. In a book remarkable for its warmth and candour, she discovers that inheritance is about much more than genes: that we are shaped by songs as much as by cells, and that what triumphs, ultimately, is love.

In the media

Wonderful, humane . . . This is a book with resolution, determination and honesty
Scotland on Sunday
It is Kay’s abundant wit that makes Red Dust Road such a moving, spirited work. This is a terrifically easy, evocative, and often amusing read . . . A remarkable, soul-searching journey
Sunday Herald
A clear-eyed, witty and unsentimental account of the push and pull between nature and nurture. Happiness shines through
Sunday Times