Synopses & Reviews
"There is a kind of freshness and bubbling wonder in this book, the sense of a writer genuinely searching for answers." -- The Washington Post Francisco DSai is a firstborn son of a firstborn sonall 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 Gamas sword and Saint Francis Xaviers cross, and became Catholics. In Chicago circa 1973, Franciscos Konkan father, Lawrence, does his best to assimilate into American culture. But Franciscos American, Peace Corpsveteran mother, Denise, and his uncle Sam are passionate raconteurs set on preserving the familys Konkan heritage, feeding Franciscos imagination with proud visions of India and Konkan history. Like his acclaimed debut Whiteman,
Tony DSouzas The Konkans
is an absorbing portrait of assimilation filled with romance, comedy, masterly storytelling, and the truth of family in any country. "D'Souza's compelling tale of one extended family's trials and triumphs in a foreign land is an astute glimpse of the challenges, dangers, and rewards of assimilation." -- The Boston Globe "[F]unny and romantic and heartbreaking..." -- St. Petersburg Times TONY DSOUZA
is the author of Whiteman,
a Los Angeles Times
Book Prize finalist and winner of the Sue Kaufman Prize. A Guggenheim fellow, his fiction has been published in The New Yorker, Playboy, Tin House,
the Literary Review, Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards,
and elsewhere. He lives in Sarasota, Florida.
PRAISE FOR THE KONKANS [A] savvy storyteller with a clear, soulful voice . . . [DSouza] has created . . . an affectionate exploration of personal identity in order to make sense of conflicting partsand thus become whole in a multicultural world.”Entertainment Weekly
DSouzas compelling tale of one extended familys trials and triumphs in a foreign land is an astute glimpse of the challenges, dangers, and rewards of assimilation.” Boston Globe
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. Known as the "Jews of India," the Konkans kneeled before the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama's sword and before Saint Francis Xaviers cross, abandoned their Hindu traditions, and became Catholics. In 1973 Francisco's Konkan father, Lawrence, and American mother, Denise, move to Chicago, where Francisco is born. His father, who does his best to assimilate into American culture, drinks a lot and speaks little. But his mother, who served in the Peace Corps in India, and his uncle Sam (aka Samuel Erasmus D'Sai) are passionate raconteurs who do their best to preserve the family's Konkan heritage. Friends, allies, and eventually lovers, Sam and Denise feed Franciscos imagination with proud visions of India and Konkan history.
Filled with romance, comedy, and masterful storytelling, The Konkans leaves us surprised by what secrets history may hold for us if only we wonder enough to look.
About the Author
Tony DSouza is the author of three novels, including the award-winning Whiteman. He has contributed to The New Yorker, Playboy, Esquire, Outside, Salon, Granta, McSweeneys, O. Henry Prize Stories, Best American Fantasy, and elsewhere. A recipient of the Sue Kaufman Prize, Florida Gold and Silver Medals for fiction, and fellowships from the Guggenheim and the NEA, Tony was nominated for a National Magazine Award for coverage of Nicaraguas Eric Volz murder trial and spent three years in Africa with the Peace Corps.