Unblinking (Made in Michigan Writers) (Paperback)
Of Lisa Lenzo's first collection, Charles Baxter wrote: "Lenzo's stories have a strong pulse of feeling and a sly intelligence, and her angels, children, and lovers have an eerie radiance, a hard-won wisdom, that you can spot on any page of this book." In Unblinking, Lenzo's angels, lovers, and children are back-older, sometimes wiser, and shedding new light.All ten stories in Unblinking take place in or circle back to Detroit and portray both the beauty and grit of the city and its inhabitants. In "Up in the Air," a blues musician cherishes his memory of falling from a tree - "the utter sweetness of falling, of floating, almost still" - even though his downward plunge has left him seriously disabled. The narrator of "In the White Man's House," recalls a high school basketball game, torn by racial division, and the distress of his teenaged friend who strove to be "blacker." In "Losing It," a disgruntled angel tries to help a nurse control his outbursts of comic and fruitless anger. And in "Marching," an old white man, who now has great difficulty walking, remembers marching fifty miles with Martin Luther King Jr. Despite the hardships they experience, the characters in the collection find pleasure and solace in what this lovely planet has to offer. By turns playful and grave, told with humor and candor, these down-to-earth and heavenly stories will both surprise with fresh insight and remind the reader of what they already know. Unblinking is a short story collection for any lover of contemporary fiction looking for that strong pulse of feeling.
About the Author
Lisa Lenzo is the author of Within the Lighted City, chosen by Ann Beattie for the 1997 John Simmons Short Fiction Award, and 2015 Michigan Notable Book Award winner Strange Love (Wayne State University Press). Lenzo's other awards include a PEN Syndicated Fiction Award, a Hemingway Days Festival Award, and First Prize for Fiction in the 2017 Literature and Medicine Writing Contest. Her stories and essays have appeared in Arts & Letters, Michigan Quarterly Review, Sacred Ground: Stories about Home, Fresh Water: Women Writing on the Great Lakes, and on NPR.