SICKO is a collection of six short stories (and one titular novella), and attempts to travel into the pyche of a deranged individual. Here, author, Kay Oliver, presents us with situations of everyday life, from father-son bonding to a simple phone call to a 9-11 operator; but life isn’t that simple, as someone has to suffer for the twisted to be satisfied.
Oliver has a knack for writing snappy and short prose, telling what needs to be told in such a short amount of time, as evident of the second tale, Hunting Season. However, that also presents us with the problem. When you reach the longer stories, such as Nine One One, you find yourself drifting in and out. It doesn’t become the page-turner it was earlier. Issues such as pacing could have been tidied up with some sharper editing.
However, with that being said, it was a genius move to spilt the titular novella into three parts with one each at the beginning, middle and end. This allows the story to breathe, but also shows us that, while the events of Sicko are still happening, others are suffering parallel to those events.
What’s the verdict? Uneven to say the least. Some stories stand out, while others fade away too easily. However, for the price Sicko is available for on Amazon, the story Hunting Season and the titular novella are worth the price alone.
If you’d like to purchase Sicko, you can do so here.
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