STORY: A heartbreaking portrayal of ambition, treachery, and deception, Jazz tells the story of Chris Sommers, an aspiring writer from New York, who travels to Paris in the hopes of meeting Amber, a mysterious and beautiful woman he has always been irresistibly drawn to.
Chris is soon thrust into a world where everyone seems to be playing a dangerous and corrupt game. Anything is permissible, and even secrets that have been locked away inside the most hidden drawers of the soul will resurface.
REVIEW: For a short story, this is very, very good. It is nothing like what I usually read, and that’s one of the reasons I requested the author let me read it. The book blurb intrigued the mind and once read, the story within fully satisfied it.
This is a well told tale of a painful unrequited love of Chris for Amber, his cousin’s girlfriend. The story starts of gently, with the relationship between all protagonists slowly flushing out, picking up steam with Chris traveling to Paris to face not just Amber, but his feelings for her.
There’s a lot to like about this psychological thought-provoking short story that is filled with picture painted prose.
I liked Chris because he was so real and in touch with his inner thoughts and feelings. He was one of those very likable characters that we want to smother with hugs.
Amber was another story altogether. I felt sorry for this lost soul and hoped that by the time I reached the end, she would have grown up. In the end, I appreciated the author letting my imagination fly on the ending of this story.
If you’re in a mood for a short story with substance in which the author masterfully crafts his characters with a wonderful prose, I highly recommend you pick this one up. It is a great poolside, beach side or just plain at home read.
Here are some excerpts that impressed me and I hope will give you a glimpse of the writing style of this author:
A blistering wind blew off from every direction, and the quiet light that came from lamps and enclosed the grey skin of the sidewalk couldn’t stop darkness from wrapping itself around glass and concrete and flesh in what resembled a tight and desperate embrace. I could feel the harsh air painfully playing inside my lungs. It hurt to even blink.
We never perceive the passage of time in the same mechanical manner the ticking of a watch implies. For us time is subjective, a sinuous river, sometimes viscous, almost grinding to a halt as we zigzag our way among pedestrians wearing heavy jackets, and sometimes fast and turbulent, leading our lives with indescribable fury.
Fragments of a wild and bizarre beauty would appear and disappear fast, never settling for more than what felt as a second. My mind couldn’t put together all the glints that my past kept throwing at me. But then the incessant moan of the city night faded away into silence, and my mind began to weave an intricate web of memories.
What had started off as a waffling and erratic cocktail of images, condensed to such a degree that I could barely discern Amber’s face, had now grown into a fascinating and yet frightening labyrinth.
I took pleasure in building Amber, piece by piece, until my mind contained a fully fleshed version of a thin and gracious young woman, a white dress sculpted around her body and her black hair falling down to her waist. It was a two year old memory, but it felt as real as the people I was walking around with.
It’s a shame actually that certain depths of the human spirit cannot be explained using conventional words. Those who have dealt with words for some time know it better than anyone else. For them moments of extreme clarity, of powerful inspiration, are rare, and they approach them with fear and respect, the same way you’d approach an ancient relic.