‘My whole life has been a search for the miraculous,’ Bruce Chatwin says. Each of these essays, fragments and sketches written between 1972 and the author’s recent death are way-stations in the search. Chatwin is unclassifiable. Certainly he is one of the practitioners who have enlarged, liberated and dignified the notion of travel writing. He is also a novelist and a cultural historian, a man of cosmopolitan outlook, capacious imagination, formidable erudition and fertile eccentricity.