The Pull of Gravity

Gae Polisner

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

While Nick Gardner’s family is falling apart, his best friend, Scooter, is dying from a freak disease. The Scoot’s final wish is that Nick and their quirky classmate, Jaycee Amato, deliver a prized first-edition copy of Of Mice and Men to the Scoot’s father. There’s just one problem: the Scoot’s father walked out years ago and hasn’t been heard from since. So, guided by Steinbeck’s life lessons, and with only the vaguest of plans, Nick and Jaycee set off to find him.

Characters you’ll want to become friends with and a narrative voice that sparkles with wit make this a truly original coming-of-age story.


Read an Excerpt


A fever was what started everything. That, and the water tower, and the cherry cola. Well, also, Dad and his condition, and Mom being in Philadelphia and all.
I mean, the fever alone wasn’t the problem, or even the hallucination that came with it. I always got those when I was sick. “Febrile seizures” Mom calls them. But they were usually confined to my bedroom. Okay, once to the bathroom—unless there were actually giant spiders guarding the toilet—and once to the backyard. But there were definitely giant noodles dancing out there, so



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    Watch the trailer for Gae Polisner's debut novel!



Praise for The Pull of Gravity

“The very sentimentalism of the situation, the quest nature of the plot, and the quirkiness of the characters will appeal to many young readers.” --BCCB

“What summer reading list is complete without a road-trip novel? Especially one that extols the virtues of reading sad books and contains the sentence: ‘Parents are such idiots.’” –Newsday

“Polisner’s first novel begins with a bang and ends with another . . . . There is a great deal to enjoy throughout, and literary kids will surely enjoy a subplot involving John Steinbeck.” –Booklist

“Characters feel real . . . and the plot zips along, championing strength in adversity.” –School Library Journal

“She [Gae Polisner] is a writer young adult readers will surely want to hear more from.” –examiner.com

“The very sentimentalism of the situation, the quest nature of the plot, and the quirkiness of the characters will appeal to many young readers.” –Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“Although the teens’ best laid plans go oft awry, they discover that the force of the universe is with them—or at least friendship, family and romance. Pulls the heart in all the right places.” –Kirkus Reviews

“Scooter, Nick, and Jaycee are real, and they’re funny. I love how they yearn for something beautiful, warm, and true to lift them from the lousy, sad absurdity of their circumstances. And I love the unlikely places where they find it: Yoda. A possibly misguided bus trip. Red wax lips. Real lips. And each other. I love that they find it mostly in each other.”—Lynne Rae Perkins, Newbery Medal-winning author of As Easy as Falling Off the Face of the Earth  

“Part love story, part adventure story, funny and serious, The Pull of Gravity is a delightful read.”—Francisco X. Stork, author of Marcelo in the Real World

“Gae Polisner writes with fluidity and grace. The Pull of Gravity will draw you in and keep you thinking long after you've closed the book.” –K.L. Going, author of King of the Screwups

The Pull of Gravity is the whole package—realistic, quirky, fun, and weepy. Polisner is an author to watch.” —Mary E. Pearson, author of The Miles Between

The Pull of Gravity is a clever, masterfully told tale of loyalty and redemption that will pull you in and hook you 'til the last page.—Chris Crutcher, author of Deadline

In the Press

THE PULL OF GRAVITY by Gae PolisnerKirkus Book Reviews
Read the Kirkus Review of THE PULL OF GRAVITY . Blending Steinbeck and Star Wars, this debut novel with a touch of magical realism leads two teens on a weekend road trip to fulfill a secret mission.
- Kirkus Reviews

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Gae Polisner

  • Gae Polisner is a wife, mother, and family law attorney/mediator by trade, but a writer by calling. The Pull of Gravity is her first novel.
  • Gae Polisner Rick Kopstein
    Gae Polisner



Teacher's Guide


Available Formats and Book Details

The Pull of Gravity

Gae Polisner



Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)