IN THIS WORTHY debut collection of a half-dozen short stories, Bob Sylva explores a fertile, sometimes precarious, locale that has occupied him throughout his writing career.
Here, out on the desolate edge,the percolating abandonment, one discovers a surprisingly lively place of robust fragility and lingering fragrance, a world inhabited by struggling souls who, despite all, exhibit virtues of optimism, ambition, resilience and conviction. All the while espousing a redemptive stew of sage philosophies and gritty platitudes.
From original reportage come story lines freshly rendered, at times magical, often a degree far-fetched, featuring colorful protagonists who confront life’s obstacles with admirable grace and ingenious ploys of cultural adaptation. Whatever the outcome, in a skilled narrator’s hands,their plights are shepherded with sympathy and genuine affection.
In ensemble, The King of Karaoke is an exuberant chorus of distinct voices, clearly accented and delightfully off-key, that celebrate the diversity of the human dilemma.