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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
Choo Chooma' by Wayne J. Landry is a collection of short stories that range in genre, with each reading independently of the others. In total, Landry's anthology is comprised of six pieces: Perfect, For Love, Moochie, Together in Church, Pig Bones, and A Good Sunday. Perfect is a thriller about a woman named Elaine who is rescued on the side of the road by Benjamin. As Elaine embraces a life that all others search for and she seems to have found, Benjamin embraces more than just life. Moochie is a poem about the companionship and love of a dog that bears the same name. A Good Sunday revolves around the Caillouet family as they return from church. Instead of going through the usual motions that most Americans subscribe to on the treasured day of rest, the younger Caillouets are roped into a story of biblical proportions.
Choo Chooma' is a creative selection of Wayne J. Landry's work. With the exception of Moochie, I really did have to step away between each story and it took me a little longer to process and get through than a book normally does. For those who know me well, this is actually a good thing. I enjoyed that each story stood entirely on its own and the work deserved breathing space before diving back into the next tale. The writing is crisp and tight but does rely heavily on a dense and often lengthy narrative. This is standard fare in a short story and the dialogue that surfaces feels authentic, as do the characters speaking. My favorite story was Pig Bones wherein the bravado of a huckster goes to the length of presenting an imaginary miracle relic to get his hands on some riches. Overall, this is a great collection of stories and it was a real pleasure to read.