THE WOMEN WERE LEAVING THE MEN

TheWomenWereLeavingTheMenWinner of the GLCA New Writers Award

Knocked beyond the brink by departed family members, curious obsessions, and unruly physical attributes, the characters in this collection climb and scrap their way toward intimacy, sanity, and redemption.  A divorced astronaut, back from the moon, tries to rehabilitate his stroke-ridden mother.  A young woman must decide whether to stay with a man she suspects of being a murderer.  A son helps his mother bake a cake sculpted into the image of his runaway father.  A man born with a single enormous hand can barely tell the difference between cleaning and making love.  Absurdity dogs all of these people, but each of their stories is rooted in emotional realism.  Their humor and pathos fuel their conflicts and relationships.

“Andy Mozina brings great innovation and energy to the short story.  The Women Were Leaving the Men heralds a new and deeply original voice.”
—Ann Patchett, author of Bel Canto and The Dutch House

“Like the stand-up comic and Harvard Law drop-out who narrates the final story in this brilliant collection, Andy Mozina is able to transport us from hilarity to pathos in a breathtaking, heartbreaking moment.  A memorable and distinctive debut by a writer with an offbeat and beguiling vision.”
—Peter Ho Davies, author of The Welsh Girl and The Fortunes

“Andy Mozina feels like another writer Fence will want to claim credit for discovering, as if.”
—Jonathan Lethem, author of The Fortress of Solitude and Motherless Brooklyn

“All of Mozina’s stories are very good new fiction.  …Mozina has a lively, engaging voice and a knack for hitting perfect details and quirk-levels, the sort of truths you’ve always felt but never thought.”
—The Review of Contemporary Fiction

“This collection is both humorous and haunting.  Mozina possesses both an ironic sensibility and a real compassion for characters in their human conditions.”
—Laura Kasischke, author of Be Mine and The Life Before Her Eyes

 “Mozina is a rare being—a fearless writer, one who takes death-defying risks.  And, all things considered, his success rate is staggering.”
—Diagram

“The riveting characters in The Women Were Leaving the Men dare to hope, and their honesties run them into absurdity, longing, and the sort of turmoil that might be love.  No author I know has the gift of being at once so bold, empathetic, and satisfying, and no collection I’ve read has caused me to laugh out loud so often, or to cherish what it means to feel vulnerable.  Mozina is not only brilliant; he’s also as fascinating as quicksilver seen for the first time.”
—Mark Wisniewski, author of Watch Me Go and All Weekend With the Lights On

“Mozina is oxygen for the genre.”
—Choice

“If the literary gods are just—and who’s to say they cannot be?—‘Cowboy Pile,’ the first story in this collection, will become known as the most hilarious short story of 2007. … These stories are in-depth with just a few words and delightful to reread.  They gain strength and coherence with each round and are paragons of realistic, un-storybook love.”
—The Bloomsbury Review

“Cowboys drawn to a bizarre ritual; a teenager afraid that his girlfriend will discover he’s not normal; a former astronaut more attuned to the moon than to Earth—Mozina’s stories are told from a wide range of perspectives and in voices we haven’t heard.  The final story ends so strikingly that I didn’t want to put the book down after I’d come to the last word.”
—Lisa Lenzo, author of Within the Lighted City and Strange Love

“In the works of Andy Mozina, the country is a giant sweet-spot of dorky, impossible yearning.  Wayward wives and horny priests.  Perverted attorneys and two or three of the nastiest tryst-partners you will meet this month, at least.  This is a funny, sexy book that is not about sex at all.  It is about the hope, the stupid hope, for transformation.”
—Mark Costello, author of Big If

Available from Wayne State University Press and Amazon.