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One of the most acclaimed debuts of the year - a rumbustuous, brilliant novel about Sri Lanka, cricket and the search for a legendary sportsman
Shehan Karunatilaka has written advertisements, rock songs, travel stories and basslines. Chinaman is his first novel.
"Carries real weight...a mixture of, say, CLR James, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Fernando Pessoa and Sri Lankan arrack...essential to anyone with a taste for maverick genius" -- Simon Barnes * The Times * "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" -- Adam Lively * Sunday Times * "Karunatilaka has a real lightness of touch. He mixes humour and violence with the same deftness with which his protagonist mixes drinks" -- Tishani Doshi * Observer * "The strength of the book lies in its energy, its mixture of humour and heartwrenching 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...if the sweetest sound you've ever heard is leather on willow, if some of the most exciting moments of your life have consisted of watching a five-day match end in a draw, if the most important question around the partition of the subcontinent is "who would have made it into Undivided India's cricket team in any era?", if your mind keeps returning to that one extraordinary spell by a bowler (say, Mohammad Zahid to Brian Lara at the Gabba, 1997)...then this book could be the best thing to happen to your life since the Ashes/World Cup/away series win against the best team in the world" -- Kamila Shamsie * Guardian * "A Great Cricket Novel. For a game without much great fiction, that's a reason to applaud with drums - and forget the rules the marshals impose at Lord's" -- Salil Tripathi * Independent *