Monday, October 19, 2015

Dr Lukas Konandreas - Better Dead Than Divorced

Your real name and pen name?
Dr. Lukas Konandreas

Please share some of the best memories of your childhood
The freedom and security of a simple village life as a child are what I remember best.  I never had to worry about who my neighbors were or if a house was unsafe to enter.  I knew everyone and everyone knew me. 

What career did you plan during your education days
I have always wanted to be a doctor and my education was dedicated towards that goal.  Being a doctor was a good job and carried a strong reputation, something I wanted for myself.  Healing the sick was in my mind, but having a good future was as well.

What languages you can speak and write?
I speak English, Greek, and Spanish.  I write English and Greek.

What is your biggest source of inspiration in life?
My father.  I wrote an entire book about his principles in the face of adversity.

Which of your work has been published so far?
Better Dead Than Divorced is my first published work outside of medical journals.

Would you like to share a synopsis of your work?
“Better Dead Than Divorced” was the answer, my aunt, Panayota gave to those who knew what her unfaithful husband George was up to. Though they were married for 14 years, he was actively commissioning assassins to kill her.

Though she was aware of the risk, she was in love, she was dedicated, and she was living at a time and in a place that forbade any woman from walking away from a marriage. My father, a cousin of Panayota and her protector, was the most knowledgeable about the danger she was in. Despite his urgings, she did not believe that she was in any danger and kept singing “Better Dead Than Divorced”.

I was an 8-year-old boy the night that Panayota was murdered. The gunshots that killed my Aunt were fired near our house and I remember them awakening me. I would later find out that my father had to be held down and convinced not to take the law in his hands that night.

This book is my attempt to chronicle this dark time and the bravery of my father as he struggled to bring justice to the culprits in a court of law. He did so having to face down powerful elements in his community, the financial strength of the husbands’ Greek-American family, and the politically connected murderers. My father risked everything in his pursuit of justice – all of his savings and his very life.

Besides my memories from the events, I used court records, the newspaper articles of the day, and over 150 interviews.
The last line of your autobiography would be…
His life’s journey ended with the good Doctor happy and content.
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