"The work begins with the story of the authors grandfather and from there tells the story of much of his extended family on both sides of his family, though the focus is primarily on his father's side. The story continually comes back to the author's relationship with his parents: their fights and separation (first in India and then in Canada and the United States), his father's anger and constant need to move to new places, and his mother's depression, which culminates in her eventual suicide in India. Interspersed in this personal history are stories of Hindu gods -- many of whom the extended family (and Ven's immediate family) are named after, and fictional accounts of family stories that have been passed down from generation to generation. From the author: In Extended families: a memoir of India, award-winning author Ven Begamudré traces the history of both sides of his family. Using many styles and genres -- journal entries, memoirs, fiction, poetry, and photographs -- he reconstructs the stories of a South Indian family of high-class Brahmins who guarded a treasury, built dams and power stations, and became electrical engineers -- the women as well as the men. One branch of the family even found itself caught up in the Japanese invasion of Burma in early 1942. Through it all, he brings to life a story that is both timeless and universal"-- Provided by publisher.