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Colpetty People

Colpetty People

Ashok Ferry
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In this extraordinary debut, Ashok Ferry chronicles, in a gently probing voice, the journeys of characters seeking something beyond the barriers of nations and generations. His tales of social-climbing Sri Lankans, of the pathos of immigration, of rich people with poor taste, of icecream karma, of innocent love, eternity, and more take us to Colombo’s nouveau riche, hoity-toity returnees, ladies with buttery skin and square fingernails, old-fashioned aristocrats, and the poor mortals trapped between them. Ferry’s stories comprise characters that are ‘serious and fine and upstanding, and infinitely dull’, but also others like young John-John, who loses his childhood somewhere ‘high up in the air between Asmara and Rome’; the maid, Agnes of God whose mango-sucking teeth ‘fly out at you like bats out of the mouth of a cave’; Ashoka, the immigrant who embodies his Sri Lankan identity only on the bus-ride between home and work; and Professor Jayaweera who finds sterile freedoms caged in the ‘unbending, straight lines of Western Justice’. Absurd, sad, scathing and generous, but mostly wickedly funny, Colpetty People presents modern Sri Lankans as they navigate worlds between Ceylon and the West.

Imprint: Vintage Books

Published: Apr/2017

ISBN: 9788184003062

Length : 200 Pages

MRP : ₹299.00

Colpetty People

Ashok Ferry

In this extraordinary debut, Ashok Ferry chronicles, in a gently probing voice, the journeys of characters seeking something beyond the barriers of nations and generations. His tales of social-climbing Sri Lankans, of the pathos of immigration, of rich people with poor taste, of icecream karma, of innocent love, eternity, and more take us to Colombo’s nouveau riche, hoity-toity returnees, ladies with buttery skin and square fingernails, old-fashioned aristocrats, and the poor mortals trapped between them. Ferry’s stories comprise characters that are ‘serious and fine and upstanding, and infinitely dull’, but also others like young John-John, who loses his childhood somewhere ‘high up in the air between Asmara and Rome’; the maid, Agnes of God whose mango-sucking teeth ‘fly out at you like bats out of the mouth of a cave’; Ashoka, the immigrant who embodies his Sri Lankan identity only on the bus-ride between home and work; and Professor Jayaweera who finds sterile freedoms caged in the ‘unbending, straight lines of Western Justice’. Absurd, sad, scathing and generous, but mostly wickedly funny, Colpetty People presents modern Sri Lankans as they navigate worlds between Ceylon and the West.

Select Preferred Format

Ashok Ferry

Born in Colombo, raised in East Africa, educated at a Benedictine monastery in the wilds of Sussex, Ashok Ferrey read Pure Maths at Christ Church Oxford, ending up (naturally) in Brixton, converting Victorian houses during the Thatcher Years.
He describes himself as a failed builder, indifferent mathematician, barman and personal trainer to the rich and infamous. His earlier Colpetty People and The Good Little Ceylonese Girl as well as Serendipity were shortlisted for the Gratiaen Prize, Sri Lanka's premier literary award.
Today Ferrey continues to design houses, and is a guest lecturer at the Sri Lanka Institute of Architecture. His hobbies include pushing the car when it's out of petrol and de-ticking the dogs. Oh, and vegetable shopping at Raheema's.

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