By: James Aylott
Publisher: Beautiful Arch
Publication Date: June 14, 2024
Review Date: December 12, 2023
Tales of Whiskey Tango from Misery Towers by James Aylott delivers a narrative that unravels against the complexity of modern life in the heart of St. Louis – a tale where grit and wit dance with dark humor among the desperate hunt of self-discovery.
The Missouri Towers of St Louis, a dilapidated apartment building ironically offering a soothing view of the St. Louis Arch, becomes the stage for a collision of fates involving a cast of eccentric characters. In the midst of the tumult of a city contending with civil rights concerns and simmering tensions, the experiences and undertakings of the inhabitants of Missouri Towers metaphorically parallel broader endeavors of a city against racial and social inequities.
Mike Love, a striving real estate agent, embraces adventurous and ambitious dreams that collide with the humble visions of his partner, Gloria, a trapeze artist. As they navigate their contrasting aspirations, Madison Stone, a debutante transformed into a carefree spinster, emerges with her whimsical approach to relationships. Can Madison's whimsy inject a fresh perspective into the pair’s contrasting aspirations?
Meanwhile, the quirky agent Nick Pipeman’s attempt to spice up the stagnant real estate market stirs a scandal, prompting his colleague Mike Love to consider a strategic cover-up. In the cutthroat realm of St. Louis, will selfless acts prevail, or is Nick merely a pawn in Mike's pursuit of self-gain? Enters Daris, an established Bosnian immigrant in the real estate industry, contending with strategic moves by rival agents. As the ambitions of these real estate go-getters collide and intertwine, will their destinies become the driving force behind a thrilling ride of ambition and deceit, transforming the city into an arena for unforeseen twists, betrayals, and unexpected alliances...
The plot thickens as the charismatic conman Colton Chesterfield and Reginald Oakland, a former undertaker seeking justice for the losses he suffered at Colton's hands, come into the spotlight. The narrative intensifies when Butterfly, a seasoned strip-club dancer, enters Reginald's scheme, forging an unusual partnership that transcends her profession. Amid the drama, Sam Robinson, disillusioned with modern dating, seeks companionship through paid encounters. Could Sam’s newfound paid contract Alice, and the motive behind her unconventional profession, be the catalyst that shatters the walls of his self-imposed prison – a barrier erected from the disillusionment of failed post-divorce relationships and social expectations of a man?
A blend of the genres of mystery, drama, and satire, Tales of Whiskey Tango from Misery Towers is a mosaic of stories that represent the human search for meaning and self-identity in a world that has commodified even companionships. Aylott uses dark humor deftly to counteract the contemplative topics and tense situations in which the protagonists find themselves. As the hilarious nature of some scenarios counterbalances the graveness of the problems at hand, the narrative balances comedy with gravity to hook readers while also emphasizing the profound nature of the characters' experiences.
The book, with its explicit descriptions of sexual encounters, profane language, and observation about mental health and suicidal conditions caters to mature audiences. The work promises a thought-provoking read for those who encourage the interplay of dark humor with profound and reflective issues.
Quill says: Through a diverse ensemble of outlandish individuals, Tales of Whiskey Tango from Misery Towers delves into the perennial human impulses for vocational aspirations, human connections, and self-discovery.