University of Rochester

EVENT: Reading by Novelist Nicole Mones, Winner of Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize

TIME, DATE, AND PLACE: 5 p.m., Sunday, April 16, in the Welles-Brown Room in Rush Rhees Library on the University of Rochester River Campus, Reception and book signing follow

ADMISSION: Free and open to the public. Note: Parking is available on University lots all weekend long.

March 14, 2000

Author Nicole Mones will read from her prize-winning novel, Lost in Translation, at 5 p.m. Sunday, April 16, in the Welles-Brown Room in Rush Rhees Library on the University of Rochester River Campus. In addition, she will accept the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction by an American Woman, which is awarded annually by the Susan B. Anthony Institute for Gender and Women's Studies and the Department of English. A reception and book signing will follow the reading and presentation.

Alice Mannegan, the main character in Lost in Translation, is an American woman working as a freelance interpreter in Beijing. Thwarted in romance by a domineering father, she often picks up Chinese men for one-night stands, as if to defy her father's racist beliefs. Her life suddenly changes when she is chosen to work on a project to locate the remains of the Peking Man, first discovered in the 1920s but missing since World War II. While working on this expedition, she finds love, strength, and redemption in Lin Shiyang, a researcher on the assignment with her.

Mones did not begin her career as a writer. She started a textile business after college, but was fascinated with Chinese culture, history and civilization. She went back to school to learn Mandarin Chinese. Lost in Translation is Mones' first novel and has been praised for succeeding on many levels: as a character study, as a look at a changing society, as an examination of cultural difference, as an adventure story, and finally as a romance.

The Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize was established in 1976 in memory of Janet Kafka, a young editor killed in an automobile accident that ended a career many believed would have furthered the causes of women and literature. Previous winners have included Toni Morrison for Song of Solomon and Gail Godwin for A Southern Family.