A man follows his wife. The wife follows a stranger. The stranger leaves town and the man goes after him, determined to settle the score. But the man is not the only one looking for the stranger, and the stranger has troubles of his own. Amid all this, the earth quakes, a boy leaps out a window, and a dolphin swims free. Of course people have adventures of this kind—of course! of course!—but we’ve never heard of it before. With deadpan humor and skewed wordplay, Deb Olin Unferth weaves a mystery of hope and heartbreak.
Deb Olin Unferth is a University of Kansas professor and Pushcart Prize winner. She has been published in Harper’s, NOON, 3rd Bed, McSweeney’s, Fence, and other places. Vacation is her first novel.
Deb Olin Unferth will read and signs copies of Vacation at the event.
“Deb Olin Unferth is one of the most daring and entertaining writers in America today. She is an artist who knows that every sentence is an opportunity to have it all — music, invention, narrative drive — and hers most definitely do. This novel is tricky, odd, unnerving, hilarious, and ultimately quite scary, not to mention very, very moving. We may or may not deserve this Vacation, but we are lucky to have it.”
“Part mystery, part sonata, Unferth writes like a musician plays, weaving images and themes and melodies with these beautifully rhythmic, funny, heart-breaking sentences. The whole novel should be read aloud and relished.”
“In visionary, original prose, Deb Olin Unferth’s wonderful, quirky Vacation briskly sends forth its characters on their expectant journeys of self-discovery. Sentence by sentence, Unferth surprises and makes profound sense of what it is to be alive and how easily a lifesuit may be shucked off: “You won’t even feel it.” Loud applause should follow this accomplished —entertaining, funny, sad, solemn—book.”