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Shanthi Sekaran biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Shanthi Sekaran
Photo: Daniel Grisales

Shanthi Sekaran

Shanthi Sekaran Biography

Shanthi Sekaran teaches creative writing at California College of the Arts, and is a member of the Portuguese Artists Colony and the San Francisco Writers' Grotto. Her work has appeared in the New York TimesBest New American Voices and Canteen, and online at Zyzzyva and Mutha Magazine. Her first novel, The Prayer Room, was published by MacAdam Cage. A California native, she lives in Berkeley with her husband and two children.



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Interview

Author Shanthi Sekaran discusses her novel Lucky Boy and what moved her to shed light on the immigrant experiences across the socio-economic divide.

What inspired you to write this novel and what is the significance of its title?

In 2011, I heard a story on NPR about a Guatemalan mother who was fighting to get her child back from the American couple adopting him. I sat riveted for the few minutes that the story ran, but of course, it left many questions unanswered. Afterward, I couldn't get the story out of my head. I wanted to get inside it and know the thoughts and motivations of everyone involved. I'm a fiction writer, not an investigative journalist, and the best way I know to get inside a story is to write it. The book that resulted takes a very different path from the initial news item, but writing it helped explore some of those early questions. Lucky Boy was perhaps the tenth version of the novel's title. The initial impulse is to see it as an ironic title, but I don't see it that way. I see it as a true statement. Ignacio is a lucky boy. He is wanted and loved.

Lucky Boy focuses on the very different immigrant experiences of two mothers. What made you decide to write about immigration?

I've always written about immigration of one sort or another. Even my mystical, fantastical stories have immigrant figures in them. The first novel I...

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Books by this Author

Books by Shanthi Sekaran at BookBrowse
Lucky Boy jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Shanthi Sekaran but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Michael Chabon

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    Novelist, screenwriter, columnist and short story writer Michael Chabon was born May 24, 1963 in Washington, DC.   He grew up in the suburbs of Columbia, Maryland with his parents Robert, a physician, lawyer, ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Lucky Boy

    Try:
    Telegraph Avenue
    by Michael Chabon

  • Amanda Eyre Ward

    Amanda Eyre Ward

    Amanda Eyre Ward was born in New York City in 1972. Her family moved to Rye, New York when she was four. Amanda attended Kent School in Kent, CT, where she wrote for the Kent News.

    Amanda majored in English and American ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Lucky Boy

    Try:
    The Same Sky
    by Amanda Eyre Ward

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Editor's Choice

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Book Club Discussion
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