Our second book review of the month is here! Today, Abbie Lahmers explores the new collection from Chloe N. Clark, Collective Gravities, published earlier this month by word west. This collection “propels us into invented universes, uncanny in their likeness to our own, and sets them into orbit.”
Aptly named, Chloe N. Clark’s Collective Gravities propels us into invented universes, uncanny in their likeness to our own, and sets them into orbit. Diving into this collection is like emptying a bag of marbles and watching them spin. Each feels suspended by its own gravitational pull. And while many occupy speculative spaces or the aftermaths of outer space voyages, I’m reluctant to pigeonhole them into the sci-fi genre (though they take plenty of cues from it). Just as many of these stories dwell in the less literal great beyond, letting down the barriers of our known world for the mystical to slip through—for the murky realms of ghosts and shadows to hover in our peripheries. Shying away from anything too technical or overly involved, a good world-building balance is struck, giving us just enough to live in the space without asking questions, or rather to keep us asking the right kind of questions.