Cat's Table

ISBN-10: 0307744418
ISBN-13: 9780307744418
Edition: N/A
Authors: Michael Ondaatje
List price: $15.95 Buy it from $1.99
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Description: In the early 1950s, an eleven-year-old boy in Colombo boards a ship bound for England. At mealtimes he is seated at the “cat’s table”—as far from the Captain’s Table as can be—with a ragtag group of “insignificant” adults and two other boys, Cassius  More...

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Book details

List price: $15.95
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 6/12/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 288
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.638
Language: English

In the early 1950s, an eleven-year-old boy in Colombo boards a ship bound for England. At mealtimes he is seated at the “cat’s table”—as far from the Captain’s Table as can be—with a ragtag group of “insignificant” adults and two other boys, Cassius and Ramadhin. As the ship makes its way across the Indian Ocean, through the Suez Canal, into the Mediterranean, the boys tumble from one adventure to another, bursting all over the place like freed mercury. But there are other diversions as well: one man talks with them about jazz and women, another opens the door to the world of literature. The narrator’s elusive, beautiful cousin Emily becomes his confidante, allowing him to see himself “with a distant eye” for the first time, and to feel the first stirring of desire. Another Cat’s Table denizen, the shadowy Miss Lasqueti, is perhaps more than what she seems. And very late every night, the boys spy on a shackled prisoner, his crime and his fate a galvanizing mystery that will haunt them forever. As the narrative moves between the decks and holds of the ship and the boy’s adult years, it tells a spellbinding story—by turns poignant and electrifying—about the magical, often forbidden, discoveries of childhood and a lifelong journey that begins unexpectedly with a spectacular sea voyage.From the Hardcover edition.

Michael Ondaatje was born in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) on September 12, 1943. He moved to Canada in 1962. He received a B.A. from the University of Toronto and a M.A. from Queen's University, Kingston, and teaches English at York University. He has written several volumes of poetry, novels, and other works including There's a Trick with a Knife I'm Learning to Do, The Dainty Monsters, Rat Jelly, Coming through Slaughter, Running in the Family, In the Skin of a Lion, Anil's Ghost, and The Cat's Table. He has won numerous awards including the Canadian Governor General's Award in 1971 for The Collected Works of Billy the Kid and the Booker Prize for Fiction for The English Patient, which was adapted into a film.

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