[Pinsker's]... unique and effective storytelling manages to add so much depth and complexity to a variety of stories that it becomes impossible to escape their worlds, as if the reader is past the event horizon of a black hole from the very beginning of each piece ... No matter the setting, she writes these stories with such emotional range and depth that they become as familiar as the reader’s route from their home to their place of employment ... Pinsker does not dwell on sexuality and orientation, but instead presents it as another facet of the characters, inviting the reader to pay more attention to their emotions and their actions throughout the stories ... Pinsker’s collection has such a range and depth to it storytelling and emotional resonance that the reader will be left in complete awe after reading any chosen story.
Shattering melancholia and desire and cobbling together fresh wonders from the pieces, the stories of Sarah Pinsker’s speculative Sooner or Later Everything Falls into the Sea emit appealing weirdness ... Whether Pinsker’s characters are on spacecraft jetting toward the future or are in the distant past, they contend with familiar worries and wants: questions of what should be forgotten and what should be preserved; concerns around revealing their identities to people who only see in black and white. Even at their most winding and imaginative, these are tales that feel like home, if it’s 'home' regarded from a different angle. Sooner or Later Everything Falls into the Sea is a collection whose musing visions none should try to resist.
... shows us about the writer’s literary range and what she views as important about her work, not simply the degree of her productivity. A good story collection is, at its best, a statement of identity as a writer, partly retrospective but partly aspirational ... Pinsker’s abiding concern with the saving power of memory – which may be her characteristic theme – may sometimes nudge her toward sentimentality, but there is a counter strain of pure playfulness in her fiction as well ... Like all innovative short fiction writers, and despite her recurrent concerns with memory and music, Pinsker’s cardinal strength lies in her unpredictability ... a voice resonant with feeling and desire. Maybe it’s the voice of a singer.
With stories that jump from divergent pasts to possible futures and include main characters of all age ranges, genders, and social backgrounds, it would be easy for the book to become disjointed. However, Pinsker’s undeniable talent for familiarizing characters caught in deeply unfamiliar situations...brings a uniting element of empathy to even the most far-fetched conceit ... Pinsker’s stories romp through their conceits with such winning charm that even the less successfully cohesive among them delight with their nuanced detail. In spite of being hampered slightly by a tendency to invest more in the worldbuilding than in the culmination of plot, Pinsker has delivered a sturdy collection in the speculative tradition of Ursula K. Le Guin or Kelly Link but with her own indomitable voice front and center.
This beautiful, complex debut collection assembles some of Nebula winner Pinsker’s best stories into a twisting journey that is by turns wild, melancholic, and unsettling ... Pinsker’s captivating compendium reveals stories that are as delightful and surprising to pore through as they are introspective and elegiac.