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(Олександра Іванюк)

Oleksandra recently earned a doctorate in political science from Maria Curie-Sklodowska University in Poland, where her dissertation focused on the political practices of parliamentarian elites in Ukraine. She also holds degrees in political science from Kyiv-Mohyla Academy in Ukraine, European interdisciplinary studies from the College of Europe in Poland, and foreign policy studies from the Academy of the Polish Institute of International Affairs and the Academy of Young Diplomats. She currently works as a political analyst and runs the Ukrainian literary club in Warsaw, Poland. Oleksandra’s essays and articles have been published in numerous English publications, including New Eastern Europe and the Kennan Institute’s Focus Ukraine, as well as in anthologies such as The Process of Politicization: How Much Politics Does a Society Need? Amor[t]e is her first novel and was written in close collaboration with the book’s heroine.

Born 1986 in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Currently resides in Warsaw, Poland.


Based on a true story, and written with the assistance of the principal character, Amor[t]e is the story of a brief love unfolding and ending against the volatile backdrop of war. Francesca Leonardi, a young Italian woman, arrives in a Donetsk on the brink of invasion with a goal of improving her Russian and teaching Italian. There she meets and falls in love with a young history teacher, social activist, and organizer of the Donetsk Euromaidan, Yuriy Matushchak (1987-2014), through whom she enters the worlds of Ukrainian history, Ukrainian-Russian political tension, and revolution. The couple flees Eastern Ukraine in the face of Russian-armed terrorists, moving to Chernivtsi, only to return east within months so that Yuriy can join the ranks of volunteer fighters defending Ukraine. Yuriy’s memory and sense of cultural pride and national duty are lovingly and intimately chronicled in this fictionalized memoir of an ordinary war hero unable to sit on the sidelines while his country faces peril.
Translation sample available upon request.

Key words: popular fiction, women’s fiction, fictionalized memoir, revolution, Donetsk

Original publication: «Амор[т]е», Books XXI, 2017

Anticipated word count: 117,000

English rights holder: Author

Photo credit: Daria Koltsova