Location: the Kosciuszko Foundation NY
6:00 pm - Gift Store open for book purchases
6:30 pm - Presentation with signing
Reception to follow
Admission is $10 for non-members, free of charge for members.
Seating is limited, first come, first served
"ARDOR" pokes fun at professors, poets, journalists, policymakers, business people, and foundation officers and will appeal to intelligent readers who appreciate satire and the subtle skewering of overblown pretensions.
Chester Milosz, a very minor American poet who teaches at a very minor American college and aspires to win the Nobel, receives an invitation to a meeting of global high-flyers at the Otto Nabokov Foundation's Ardor Haus estate in Caravaggio, Italy. The organizers are Dickey Lemon, a British billionaire who made his fortune in hamster bedding, and Joe Zsasz, an ex-communist functionary-turned-international consultant. The participants are a sundry collection of business people, policymakers, journalists, and academics involved in shady dealings with a corrupt Eastern European president who closely resembles Ukraine's Viktor Yanukovych.
Chester decides to go in the hope that a trip to northern Italy will help overcome his writer's block. While at Ardor Haus, he experiences cultural misunderstandings, comic misadventures, near-encounters with inspiration, and three earthquakes. It eventually dawns on Chester that he's been confused with the Nobel Prize winner, Czesław Miłosz, and that the conference is an elaborate scam. After a major earthquake destroys Caravaggio, Chester finds his Muse on the rooftop of the Duomo in Milan.
Alexander J. Motyl is a writer, painter, and professor. Nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2008 and 2013, he is the author of eight novels, Whiskey Priest, Who Killed Andrei Warhol, Flippancy, The Jew Who Was Ukrainian, My Orchidia, Sweet Snow, Fall River, Vovochka, and a collection of poetry, Vanishing Points. Motyl's artwork has been shown in solo and group shows in New York City, Philadelphia, and Toronto and is part of the permanent collection of two museums. He teaches at Rutgers University-Newark and is the author of six academic books and numerous articles.