In 1878, young Satterwhite arrives at Yale University to discover what life holds for fellows with sharp aesthetic senses. He has never imagined anyone like Professor Doriskos Klionarios, who teaches art and poetry. The two are so dissimilar: a provincial youth and a cultured man of thirty, a foreigner who will never be a fine Englishman. But the tumultuous love affair scorned by their society is a gilded construct between one who believes that he is ready to know real love and a willing partner who understands that what the heart sees, it cannot forget; better to acquiesce to desire. Desire leads to danger, and danger to flight…from the rabid moralists of the college, the law, a peer’s obsessive jealousy. Their flight takes them to England in the rising glory of its Decadence, the artistic arena where Wilde was trying his luck.
“…Argiri provides an enchanting menagerie of bullies and villains, friends and mentors. And her pair of lovers are as memorable as Mary Renault's Alexander and Bagoas. Many readers should be delighted by this haunting blend of melodrama and fancy.” – Publishers Weekly, starred review
“…Argiri understands the way intellectual gay men in the late 19th Century thought and felt.” – David Leavitt for the Los Angeles Times
“Art professor Doriskos Klionarios looks and sculpts like a Greek god. His teenage student, Simion Satterwhite, has a faunlike beauty and a genius for math. Their true love triumphs over child abuse, anorexia, homophobia, censorship, and the violence of bigots…this lush, effusive work [has] some satiric bite.” – Entertainment Weekly
“If a novel's worth can be measured by the power and verity of the emotions it instills in the reader, then Argiri's approaches the divine. It transforms and moves the spirit as modern fiction should and so seldom does, describing a love story with such true emotion the heart aches reading it.” – Booklist