Francisco D'Sai is a firstborn son of a firstborn son-all the way back to the beginning of a long line of proud Konkans, the "Jews of India," who abandoned their Hindu traditions, knelt before Vasco da Gama's sword and Saint Francis Xavier's cross, and became Catholics.In Chicago circa 1973, Francisco's Konkan father, Lawrence, does his best to assimilate into American culture, drinking a lot and speaking little. But Francisco's American, Peace Corps-veteran mother,Denise, and his uncle Sam (aka Samuel Erasmus D'Sai) are passionate raconteurs set on preserving the family's Konkan heritage. Friends, allies, and eventually lovers, Sam and Denise feed Francisco's imagination with proud visions of India and Konkan history.Like his acclaimed debutWhiteman and like the works of Monica Ali or Jhumpa Lahiri,Tony D'Souza's The Konkans is an absorbing portrait of assimilation filled with romance, comedy,masterly storytelling, and the truth of family life in any country.
"Thanks to its wicked style and pacing, Mule lets me forget I'm reading serious literature while I follow its terrifying story into the land of the all-American damned." -- Walter Kirn, author of Up in the Air"Mule is swift, taut, and relentless, both a rip-roaring drug tale and a fascinating portrait of a decent human being whose morals slowly disintegrate under unbearable financial strain." -- Lauren Groff, author of The Monsters of TempletonJames and Kate are golden children of the late twentieth century, flush with opportunity. But an economic downturn and an unexpected pregnancy send them searching for a way to make do. A friend in California's Siskiyou County grows prime-grade marijuana; if James transports just one load from Cali to Florida, he'll pull down enough cash to survive for months. And so begins the life of a mule. A page-turning, Zeitgeist-capturing novel that plunges us into the criminal underworld with little chance to take a breath, Mule is about young people trying to make do in a moment when the American Dream they never had to believe in -- because it was handed to them, fully wrapped and ready to go at the takeout window -- suddenly vanishes from the menu."With adrenaline-infused sentences and a seat-gripping story line, Mule is a novel that illuminates contemporary American desperation, both its dangerous precipices and its thrilling, overwhelming freedom." -- Dean Bakopoulos, author of My American Unhappiness
In an Ivory Coast village where Christians and Muslims are squaring off for war, against a backdrop of bloody conflict and vibrant African life, Jack Diaz-an American relief worker-and Mamadou, his village guardian, learn that hate knows no color and that true heroism waits where we least expect it.During lulls in the violence, Jack learns the cycles of Africa-of hunting in the rain forest, cultivating the yam, and navigating the nuances of the language; of witchcraft, storytelling, and chivalry. Despite the omnipresence of AIDS, he courts a stunning Peul girl, meets his neighbor's wife in the darkened forest, and desperately pursues the village flirt. Still, Jack spends many nights alone in his hut, longing for love in a place where his skin color excludes him.Brimming with dangerous passions and the pressures of life in a time of war, Whiteman is a stunning debut and a tale of desire, isolation, humor, action, and fear.
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