The Leaving of Things

Vikram is not your model Indian-American teenager. Growing up in late ’80s Wisconsin, he is rebellious, adrift, and resentful of his Indian roots. But a disastrously drunken weekend becomes a one-way ticket back to the homeland for Vikram after his outraged parents decide to pack up the family and return to India.

So begins a profound journey of culture shock, loneliness, and self-discovery as Vikram—navigating the chaos of daily Indian life and the antiquated social rules of his college—finds the confidence to explore his own creativity, reconnect with his family, and meet unforgettable new friends. Most of all, he discovers that India is his soul … but America is his heart, the land of his destiny, leading to a once-in-a-lifetime test of courage as he sets out to chart a bold new course for his future.

Winner of the 2014 Kindle Book Award and the International Book Award (in the “Multicultural Fiction” Category), The Leaving of Things is a coming-of-age saga about one teenager’s culture shock, topsy-turvy sense of identity and destiny in a globe-spanning, heart-on-its-sleeve narrative connecting the Midwest of America and Ahmedabad, a dusty and colorful city in western India in the late 1980s.

Self-published in 2013, the novel’s success prompted Lake Union Publishing (an imprint of Amazon Publishing) to acquire and republish the book in November, 2014, under its own banner. The book has since gone on to become a favorite of many readers and even of teachers who’ve used the book in high-school and college classrooms in discussing the many facets of multiculturalism in America.

Available in Paperback, Audiobook or E-Book at

Praise for “The Leaving of Things”

India comes alive, even for the uninitiated. The daily life, smells, culture of food, and personal relationships flourish while the reader follows a coming of age story … The richness of this story is in the details of Indian life, the nuances of the culture, the reality of how much easier life is in America. [The Leaving of Things] tells a well-worn story of growing up, rendered beautifully, in a seductive setting.  Publishers Weekly

I read [the book] over what turned out to be a very enjoyable weekend. The story was rich and deep enough to lose myself in, and its teenaged hero spoke with an authentic, intimate voice that immediately drew me in and kept me hooked until the end.  Lindsey Lee Johnson, Author of The Most Dangerous Place on Earth

“A delightful ride! One of the best novels I’ve read recently.”  Maria Beltran, Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews, 5 stars

“Consistently mesmerizing! It overflows with a joie de vivre that holds the attention of the reader to the last page. The Leaving of Things is a major success for a debut novel.” Grady Harp, Amazon Top 50 Reviewer

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Jay Antani

Los Angeles, California

1 thought on “The Leaving of Things

  1. Impressive, Jay! Congratulations!

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