Let Me Explain You (Hardcover)
August 2015 Indie Next List
“Let Me Explain You opens with an e-mail message written by Stavros Stavros Mavrakis, Greek immigrant and restauranteur, to his three grown daughters and his ex-wife. He is dying, with just over a week left to live, he believes, and his e-mail message outlines how he wants these women's lives to be better -- if only they will follow his sage advice. From this concise and brilliant setup, the novel takes off with vivid, endearing characters and captures the tender complexity of relationships between parents, children, and siblings. With the quirkiness and humor of a light read combined with true depth of insight into relationships, this is a wonderful debut from a promising new writer.”
— Jamaica Ritcher (E), Bookpeople Of Moscow, Moscow, ID
A powerful debut novel about a Greek American family and its enigmatic patriarch from a riveting new voice in contemporary literature.
Stavros Stavros Mavrakis, Greek immigrant and proud owner of the Gala Diner, believes he has just ten days to live. As he prepares for his final hours, he sends a scathing email to his ex-wife and three grown daughters, outlining his wishes for how they each might better live their lives. With varying degrees of laughter and scorn, his family and friends dismiss his behavior as nothing more than a plea for attention, but when Stavros disappears, those closest to him are forced to confront the possibility of his death.
A vibrant tour de force that races to a surprising conclusion, Let Me Explain You is told from multiple perspectives: Stavros Stavros, brimming with pride and cursing in broken English; his eldest daughter Stavroula, a talented chef in love with her boss's daughter; her sister, the wounded but resilient Litza; and many other voices who compose a veritable Greek chorus.
By turns hilarious and deeply moving, this multigenerational novel delivers a heartfelt meditation on the power of storytelling and family, the relationship between fathers and daughters, and also the complex bond of sisterhood. Annie Liontas explores our origins and family myths, hunger and what feeds us, reinvention and forgiveness.