THE ODYSSEY OF KOSTAS VOLAKIS by Petrakis Harry Mark

THE ODYSSEY OF KOSTAS VOLAKIS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A heavy-footed but affecting family saga traces the fortunes of a Greek immigrant couple in Chicago from 1919 to 1954. Newly arrived Kostas and Katerina Volakis, depressed by the dreary tenements and hard conditions in the restaurant belonging to their good cousin, Glavas, nevertheless look forward to life. The large to live fully and generously never leaves them and the years bring some blessings -- the birth of five children, moderate financial security and the love of good friends, among them the kind Father Marlas, the irrascrible Dr. Barbaris and the exuberant patriot of Greece, Marko Sarantis. However, the years also bring rearing tragedy -- the death of the first son, Aeneas, leaving the mark of a be father's unreasonable hatred on his next son, Alex; the Cain and Abel murder of cheerful Manuel by bitter Alex; the final isolation of Alex in prison. At the close there is the strain of resurgent life as Kostas searches for and finds his son again in the shadows of the prison, the two embrace and sorrow points the way towards hope. Although the background characters are familiar fixtures- i.e., the bluff doctor and saintly priest -- and there are many fine stilted speeches, this novel has gusto, color and the warmth of simple sentiment. Elementary but effective.

Pub Date: May 24th, 1963
Publisher: McKay