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They Don’t Make Plus Size Spacesuits
Ali Thompson. Ali Thompson, $2.99 e-book (62p) ISBN 978-0-578-50138-3
This short but razor-sharp debut collection of five dystopian tales of fatphobia is a deeply emotional battle cry. Kicking off with “Fat the Future,” an impassioned essay about the erasure and condemnation of fat bodies in science fiction, these pieces range from intimate looks at their protagonists’ personal lives to larger commentary on the way the world treats fat people. “I’m Not Sorry,” which reads like an episode of Black Mirror, paints a discomforting portrait of a future where fat people must “volunteer” to get implants that monitor their activity and blood sugar in order to keep their jobs and partake in everyday activities like entering coffee shops. In the powerful “Nothing Left to Burn,” a young woman endures emotional and physical abuse at the hands of her mother who will stop at nothing to keep her daughter from growing taller, forcing her to try pills and experimental surgeries. Though the dystopian horrors of many of these stories can feel extreme, Thompson sends the collection out on an optimistic note in “We Shall All Be Healed, at Last, at Last,” about a budding rebellion among the fat citizens of the oppressive planet Utopia. This heartfelt, empathetic collection is a knockout. (Self-published)

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly on 03/20/2020