‘Chinaman is a debut bristling with energy and confidence, a quixotic novel that is both an elegy to lost ambitions and a paean to madcap dreams’
The Sunday Times
‘The strength of the book lies in its energy, its mixture of humour and heart wrenching emotion, its twisting narrative, its playful use of cricketing facts and characters, and its occasional blazing anger about what Sri Lanka has done to itself’ Guardian
One of the most acclaimed debuts of last year. In the author’s own words, ‘If you can’t understand why anyone would watch, let alone obsess over this dull game, then this is the book for you.’
Retired sportswriter WG Karunasena is dying. He will spend his final months drinking arrack, making his wife unhappy, ignoring his son and attempting to track down Pradeep S. Mathew, a spin bowler who has mysteriously disappeared and who WG considers 'the greatest cricketer to walk the earth'.
On his quest to find this unsung genius, WG uncovers a coach with six fingers, a secret bunker below a famous stadium, a Tamil Tiger warlord, and startling truths about Sri Lanka, cricket and himself.
Ambitious, playful and strikingly original, Chinaman is a novel about cricket and Sri Lanka - and the story of modern day Sri Lanka through its most cherished sport. Hailed by the Gratiaen Prize judges as 'one of the most imaginative works of contemporary Sri Lankan fiction', it is an astounding book.
Shehan Karunatilaka has written advertisements, rock songs, travel stories and basslines. Chinaman is his first novel.
Published in Vintage paperback
26th April 2012 | £8.99 | Ebook available