cover image Floating Boy and the Girl Who Couldn’t Fly

Floating Boy and the Girl Who Couldn’t Fly

P.T. Jones. ChiZine/ChiTeen (Diamond, dist.), $12.99 trade paper (250p) ISBN 978-1-77148-173-1

Writing as P.T. Jones, authors Stephen Graham Jones (Flushboy) and Paul Tremblay (Swallowing a Donkey’s Eye) deliver an unusual tale that straddles the border between magic realism and weird science. Fourteen-year-old Mary’s quiet life is disrupted one summer day when a strange teenage boy invades a family birthday party before climbing a tree and simply floating off into the sky. Soon, floating becomes contagious: children and teenagers are suddenly able to fly, while adults come down with an odd variant of the flu. All Mary wants to do is cure her three-year-old brother and return things to normal, but as she spends time with the mysterious Floating Boy, they develop an unexpected relationship. Mary and her friends must face the scientist responsible for the floating epidemic, even as the army closes in to restore order. While the premise is intriguing and the execution solid, pacing lags somewhat, and the mad science angle doesn’t gel especially well with the dreamlike quality of the writing and the sheer weirdness of flying children. Nevertheless, this is an entertaining, thoughtful piece. Ages 12–up. (Oct.)