Life is Better When Reading Sylvia Petter!
If Sylvia Petter’s Mercury Blobs were a bottle of wine, I would be drunk! Her collection of short stories is a thought provoking read. Mercury Blobs contains forty short stories, each written elegantly and with incredible perfectionism. These stories are excellent works of realism that give the reader a glimpse into the days of strangers, each at different points in his or her life. I found the work of Sylvia Petter through a friend that attends the Geneva Writers’ Group located in Switzerland. Next, I located her website and Facebook page. I was intrigued! She is a very accomplished author having received numerous awards as well as high praises from Robert OlenButler, a Pulitzer Prize recipient.
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The stories offer a kind of voyeuristic experience, almost as if we are peeking in the windows of people living their lives, unaware of our existence. For example, in the short titled Widow’s Peak, Jean-Pierre, a hair dresser, is blissfully unaware of his female client who is recalling the murders she committed against Wayne Smothers and Enzo. I became awestruck with the line at the end when she said, “And besides, I’d never married a hairdresser.” This gives the reader an opportunity to create their own ending and left me wanting more! I also love the stealthy farce that Mrs. Petter provides the reader in the short Chubby Goes to Yale. How many times have we experienced the overboard, smothering parent that constantly inundates the child with the best, to be the highest, and when the child refuses, the old cliché of “let him fall on his face” is often whispered? Yet, Chubby not only does it his way but is successful at it! This is exactly what Mrs. Petter has accomplished too! She does it her way and this book is a success!
Mercury Blobs is written with determination, and no word is wasted - no story goes on longer than it should. The tales are not only polished but very well crafted and designed. Interestingly, her writing career began much later in life. While working in Geneva, Switzerland, Mrs. Petter would wake up two hours early and write before her “day job” began. After work, she would often stay up till midnight to continue her progress. This determination of success is why I feel the author is so able to give the reader a variety and flexibility as you read each tale. I also admire the author’s word choices and descriptions. The characters are refreshingly honest and not a single story line feels contrived or dated. In the short, Stiletto Condoms, the dialog between the two lovers over pock marks on the parquet floors offers humor and the ridiculousness that one places over objects compared to people that we have a relationship with. One can sense the tension in a room or feel the stress of an individual with each word and emotion that Mrs. Petter relates. This has been done to a precision and level of perfection with the tales Fences and Necropix.
My personal favorite short was The Burka. Sylvia Petter’s true talent as an author and expert wordsmith are seen. I felt, I was at a table nearby having my own mint tea and completely mesmerized with the conversation that I was eavesdropping on. Then the author completely surprises me and leaves me in a state of shock as she relays the tale of Trashion Passion. She teases and creates a foreplay of images that has this reader wanting to continue the journey. I can’t help wondering if these two stories were connected in some possible way. This happens with two other shorts also. I highly encourage you to connect with Sylvia Petter’s book, Mercury Blobs. It is a modern, intelligent, thought provoking masterpiece that I highly recommend.
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