Monday, December 15, 2008

Meet Luigi Falconi, author of The Duke of Dubai

The love child of the local priest and the parish housekeeper, Luigi Falconi was born in Tricarico, italy, in 1945. Soon after his birth his parents immigrated to the United States.

He attended Mary Magdalene High School in Hoboken, New Jersey. Although an honor student with a football scholarship to Notre Dame, he left school to study Kabbalah. When fear of adult circumcision led him to give up the idea of converting to any religion that required surgery, he became an apprentice to a shoemaker on Mackinac Island, Michigan.

A skilled artisan, Luigi designed and crafted Chippewa moccasins while attending Michigan State University where he earned a BA in 1967 and an MA in 1969. While shoemaking and taking full-time university classes toward his Ph.D. in rocket science, he wrote three unpublished novels and one volume of poetry. The shoe shop burned in 1971, destroying Luigi’s manuscripts and his innocence. Mentally drained from this tragedy, he did the only thing left for an educated shoemaker to do: he became a teacher and, soon after, an administrator.

In 1974, Luigi uprooted his family from the security and comfort of their middle-class American home to become the headmaster of a small oil company school in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. he left education in 1978 and went to work in the Middle East oilfields.

After thirty-two years in the hot desert sun of Arabia, Luigi, unable to distinguish fact from fiction in his own life, left Dubai and moved to Italy to learn Italian and rediscover the truth.

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