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Noted poet and author and Axinn Professor of English at Middlebury College, Jay Parini ’70 has published his 15th book and sixth novel, The Apprentice Lover. Set in summer 1970, it is the story of Alex Massolini, a young American who drops out of Columbia University after his brother’s death in Vietnam and travels to the island of Capri to work as secretary to a famous British novelist.

Praised as “a witty and poignant coming-of-age story” and “an immensely entertaining and moving book” (The Philadelphia Inquirer), the novel describes Alex’s enchantment and disenchantment with his mentor’s hedonism and the sensual lifestyle of the Mediterranean island.

An English graduate, Parini holds a Ph.D. from University of St. Andrews, Scotland. He taught at Dartmouth until 1982, and then joined the faculty at Middlebury College. His book, Robert Frost: A Life, won the Chicago Tribune-Heartland Award for the best work of nonfiction for 2000.

Categorized in: Alumni Profiles