San Antonio author Marisol Cortez's Luz at Midnight wins Texas Institute of Letters award

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COURTESY PHOTO / FLOWERSONG PRESS
  • Courtesy Photo / FlowerSong Press
San Antonio author Marisol Cortez has landed the Texas Institute of Letters' 2021 Sergio Troncoso Award for Best First Book of Fiction for her recent novel Luz at Midnight.

Released in December by FlowerSong Press, Luz tells the story of a love affair between a community activist and a newspaper reporter amid concerns that a mining process will create environmental havoc in South Texas.



The book made recent headlines after its depiction of a world struggling with climate change offered a nearly spot-on prediction of the historic cold front that hit Texas last month and crippled its power grid.

“I am totally honored and humbled by the selection of Luz for this award. More, I am grateful to Sergio Troncoso, the Texas Institute of Letters, FlowerSong Press and the wider community of arts activists who have long fought to create space and opportunity for new voices to be heard,” Cortez said in an emailed statement.



Cortez and her husband, Sierra Club organizer Greg Harman co-edit Deceleration, a blog dedicated to addressing climate change and environmental justice.

“This book is for all communities who struggle to protect places and people in a time of multiple crises, and it stands on the shoulders of all my literary (and literal) antepasados who blazed a trail for us,” she said.

An online book lunch for Luz at Midnight will take place Friday at 6 p.m. In addition to a talk and reading by Cortez, the free event will including readings and discussions with local creators Kamala Platt, Mobi Warren, Viktoria Valenzuela and David Zamora Casas.

The launch event is accessible via Zoom or its Facebook event page.

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