In June 1897, the young Constantine Cavafy arrives in Paris on the last stop of a long European tour, a trip that will deeply shape his future and push him toward his poetic inclination. With this lyrical novel, tinged with an hallucinatory eroticism that unfolds over three unforgettable days, celebrated Greek author Ersi Sotiropoulos depicts Cavafy in the midst of a journey of self-discovery across a continent on the brink of massive change. He is by turns exhilarated and tormented by his homosexuality; the Greek-Turkish War has ended in Greece’s defeat and humiliation; France is torn by the Dreyfus Affair, and Cavafy’s native Alexandria has surrendered to the indolent rhythms of the East. A stunning portrait of a budding author—before he became a world-renowned poet—that illuminates the complex relationship of art, life, and the erotic desires that trigger creativity.
Winner of the Prix Méditerranée Étranger 2017 and nominated for the Prix Femina 2016 and the European Book Prize 2017.
Ersi Sotiropoulos has written fifteen books of fiction and poetry. Her work has been translated into many languages, and has been twice awarded Greece’s National Book Prize as well as her country’s Book Critics’ Award and the Athens Academy Prize. What’s Left of the Night won the 2017 Prix Méditerranée Étranger in France.
Karen Emmerich has published a dozen book-length translations of modern Greek poetry and prose. She has received the Best Translated Book Award for her translation of Eleni Vakalo’s Before Lyricism. She teaches comparative literature at Princeton.
Edmund White is author of many books including A Boy's Own Story; Genet: A Biography and The Unpunished Vice.