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“You’ll finish [Greenfield’s] book with new respect for color, especially for red. With A Perfect Red, she does for it what Mark Kurlansky in Salt did for that common commodity.”—Houston Chronicle Interweaving mystery, empire, and adventure, Amy Butler Greenfield’s masterful popular history offers a window onto a world far different from our own: a world in which the color red was rare and precious—a source of wealth and power for those who could unlock its secrets. And in this world nothing was more prized than cochineal, a red dye that produced the brightest, strongest red the Old World had ever seen. A Perfect Red recounts the story of this legendary red dye, from its cultivation by the ancient Mexicans and discovery by 16th-century Spanish conquistadors to the European pirates, explorers, alchemists, scientists, and spies who joined in the chase to unlock its secrets, a chase that lasted more than three centuries. It evokes with style and verve this history of a grand obsession, of intrigue, empire, and adventure in pursuit of the most desirable color on earth.
ASIN: 0060522763
Condition: Acceptable
Note on Condition

Most of the items in our store are used. The item's condition grade is indicated near the bottom of the product description. If you have any questions regarding specific details of an item, please contact us. We use the following rating scale:


  • Used - Very Good: Item may have minor cosmetic defects (marks, wears, cuts, bends, crushes) on the cover, spine, pages or dust cover. Shrink wrap, dust covers, or boxed set case may be missing. Item may contain remainder marks on outside edges, which should be noted in listing comments. Item may be missing bundled media. 
  • Used - Good: All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels. Shrink wrap, dust covers, or boxed set case may be missing. Item may be missing bundled media. 
  • Used - Acceptable: All pages and the cover are intact, but shrink wrap, dust covers, or boxed set case may be missing. Pages may include limited notes, highlighting, or minor water damage but the text is readable. Item may but the dust cover may be missing. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting, but the text cannot be obscured or unreadable.


  • Used - Good: Case may be damaged or come repackaged. Disc may have up to 1.5cm marking but is in great working condition. 
  • Used - Acceptable: A product with extensive external signs of wear, but is in great working condition. The case may be damaged. THe cover art, liner, notes, or other inclusion may be marked, or one or all of these items may be missing.
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