cover image Gravity Changes

Gravity Changes

Zach Powers. BOA (Consortium, dist.), $16 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-1-942683-37-7

The 19 fantastical stories in this engaging collection bend the laws of physics and fiction to leave lasting impressions. In the title story, children defy the laws of gravity before the onset of adulthood drags them reluctantly back to earth. A man struggles to save his marriage to a giant light bulb in “Children in Alaska,” while a tiny moon courts a woman by orbiting her body in the charming, one-page “Little Gray Moon.” Stories like “This Next Song,” about a doomed date between two men, still manage to integrate hints of the fantastic, departing from the collection’s established mode without abandoning it entirely. The collection’s longest piece, “Sleeping Bears,” is also its strongest, turning a clever metaphor for transparency in the age of social media into a funny, affecting examination of modern workplace dynamics. Powers excels in his earnest care for his characters and a willingness to test out every idea, whether or not it’s likely to soar. (May)