The Third Law of Motion ($20 – Click to Order, ISBN: 978-1-937536-15-2, Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-68114-169-5, LCCN: 2011945711, 6X9”, 190pp): Meg Files’ new novel is set in Michigan in the early 60s, when the worst thing a girl could do was get herself “in trouble,” when domestic violence remained hidden in silent basements. It tells the stories of Dulcie White, a bright, confused college girl distracted by sexual discoveries and the power of her boyfriend’s neediness, and track star Lonnie Saxbe, who is caught up in his own confusions and compulsions. The Third Law of Motion offers an intimate look at the subtleties and the complexities of the dynamics between a battered wife and a violent husband, where nothing is so simple as a fist punched through a wall.
Oh my heck, as we said in the day, here is a novel of a time when we faced the first “dangers”─boys and girls─and now that harm seems curious and charming, and so delicious in Meg Files’ dear and vivid novel The Third Law of Motion sweeps us through those sunny days, and then─as it truly happened─dapples us with shadow. –Ron Carlson, The Signal
When Meg Files’ The Third Law of Motion arrived, I warned myself not to take a peek until I’d cleared time on my schedule. Then I thought, Well, one page couldn’t hurt. Of course, the delicious writing, the pitch-perfect and absolutely fresh evocation of these lives of the 1960s immediately dazzled me; and then, the suspense that Files had been oh-so-deftly building into the story would not let me stop reading─or resume breathing─until the last page. –Elizabeth Evans, Suicide’s Girlfriend
Meg Files unfolds her story gently with clean, lyrical prose, balancing vivid scenes of raw sensuality with heartrending moments that foreshadow disaster. The Third Law of Motion is about love, madness, coming-of-age, and redemption, and it is also a tragedy and a page-turning thriller; in short it is a timeless classic. Meg Files is a deeply insightful and generous writer who allows even her most flawed characters grace and humanity. The Third Law of Motion is a wonderful book that absolutely deserves to be read. –Laila Halaby, Once in a Promised Land
Meg Files has given us, in The Third Law of Motion, a portrait of a marriage that is as searing and emblematic as Richard Yates’ in Revolutionary Road. What emerges is a story where damaged men damage those they love, where parents look the other way, and where women provide hope and strength to one another. This is a moving, wise, and hopeful book. –Beth Alvarado, Anthropologies
I read this novel in one sitting without stopping for sleep or food. The characters climb inside your skin so you feel acutely their desires, their obsessions, and the family secrets that bloom between them. Most of all, you find yourself in love and irrepararably tied to them, so that as the novel reaches its final, exhilarating climax it is your own soul on the line, waiting either to be extinguished, or to find redemption. –Suzanne Kingsbury, The Gospel According to Gracey
Meg Files is the author of Meridian 144, a novel; Home Is the Hunter and Other Stories; Write from Life, a book about using personal experience and taking risks in writing; The Love Hunter and Other Poems; and Galapagos Triptych. She edited Lasting: Poems on Aging. She directs the Pima Writers’ Workshop and teaches creative writing at Pima College in Tucson.