The Book is About:
- A gifted boy, physically and intellectually blessed by nature, traumatized by evets of his early youth—an unwilling witness to an incident evoking powerful human emotions he did not understand; abandoned as a child in a Boarding School and left to grow up on his own for eight years, with little guidance through puberty, which predictably left big gaps in the structure of his persona.
- A dedicated priest, masterful in his role as teacher and mentor, tormented by questions of his faith and the sacrifice of an abandoned love.
- On the periphery, the laundryman's daughter, a wisp of a girl, who haunts the pages of the book with her exotic allure.
- Five boys of varying circumstances, each with their unique blend of character and magnetism, drawn by Fate into a brotherhood whose lives intertwine in a complex filigree of events that hurtles inexorably towards its unexpected conclusion.
Welcome to my new website for my book:
Boarding School Boy now available in eBook format only Ashley Shemain
Boarding School Boy is set during the British Raj in India—the last of the great empires in world history—when the people of one small island strode the earth like giants, masters of all they surveyed. In their supreme confidence they assumed it was their god-given right that it should be so, and because of their audacity the world let them get away with it. America was yet to rise from the rubble of World War II that would rock the planet and disrupt the balance of power. But that was still in the future and till then, Britannia ruled the waves and the sun didn't set on the British Empire.
In the fading days of the British Empire there existed a unique breed of people, spread in enclaves all around the Indian subcontinent. Born in the country, they were the direct descendents of the European colonizers of the subcontinent—predominantly British, but also French, Dutch, and Portuguese—who had settled there for the previous two hundred years. Many of those who had arrived in recent decades were still ethnically European, while others who had arrived several generations ago were of mixed ancestry. Together they formed a tight community bound by their common ancestry and culture. Their loyalties were torn between their love for India, land of their birth, on the one hand and their European heritage and customs, to which they clung with pride, on the other, and they learned to live with the ensuing conflict of emotions that tugged at them in different directions and became an integral part of them. While those who walked the corridors of power in London, Lisbon, Paris, and Amsterdam dreamed their dreams of empire, wrote their history books, made bold speeches and pronouncements, and planned to make great fortunes in this distant land, this relatively small group of people, their own seed, manned the outposts, believed the brave words, saw the vision, and lived the dreams. That they would inevitably become the detritus of empire when Europe’s experiment with colonialism failed was of less consequence than the living of their lives in the pursuit of the dream.
These were the Anglo-Indians—and this story is about them.
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