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Thursday September 18, 2014
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Harry Mark Petrakis

 

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Orthodox priest from Chicago, we get a lovely mix of both.

Petrakis, now well into his eighties, has almost always used his Greek ancestry as the central place for his fiction. Twenty years ago, in a frightening novel, Days of Vengeance, he wrote about immigrants from Crete coming to Utah in the early years of the twentieth century to work in the mines. His characters, poverty stricken at home, left sun and olive orchards to be poverty stricken and work twelve hours or more a day deep in the ground at the whims of arbitrary unseen bosses. Still, they carried their old habits of revenge and family justice with them in a way that could destroy the new life they tried to make out of the mine.

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