The Chimera of Prague

Gap Year 1998, Part I

Romance - Suspense
276 Pages
Reviewed on 08/28/2018
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Author Biography

Rick Pryll is an award-winning author and poet. His latest book, "The Chimera of Prague" was selected as the winner of the 2018 New York Book Festival for Romance. A graduate of MIT, Rick wrote a novella as the thesis for his Mechanical Engineering degree. Having grown up in Western New York State, Rick and his wife, ArtPop Charlotte 2018 artist Holly Spruck, live in Charlotte. They have two children, two cats and a dog.

First published to the web in 1994, his hyperfiction short story “LIES” has garnered praise from the Wall Street Journal, SHIFT magazine, and several other publications in print and online. It is cited in more than seven books, has been translated into Spanish and Chinese.

From 1996 to 2002 Rick lived in Prague, in the Czech Republic. While there he published two books including Displaced (Foolishness Press, 1998) and Wallow (Foolishness Press, 1999). His stories and poems have been featured on the pages of THINK and OPTIMISM.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite

Told mostly through the form of a journal, The Chimera of Prague: Gap Year 1998, Part I by Rick Pryll is the first in a series that follows the life of a Joey, a young man living in Prague, Czech Republic. After his divorce from Rachael, Joey moves to Prague to rediscover who he is and to take a break from the whirlwind that has become his life. While living there, he meets Karina, a shy woman whom he is initially obsessed with. Karina, on the other hand, does not seem too interested in Joey. His interest shifts towards other ladies. Two in particular capture his heart, Ingrid and Izabela. Even so, he does not find what he is looking for in them and he uses them as an excuse from searching for answers within himself.

The form of writing adopted by Rick Pryll in The Chimera of Prague allowed me to experience Joey’s raw emotions and his perspective on different situations and people. His tone is outspoken, which creates a striking impact that continuously engages. Joey appears narcissistic, obnoxious and opinionated which he uses to mask the conflict going on inside him. As the main character, he delivers the twists of the narrative impressively, considering the difficulty in creating an impactful main character who is less than perfect. The inclusion of detailed descriptions of historical places, artifacts, as well as the Czech cuisine and culture adds a flavorful gloss. I look forward to the book’s sequel to follow Joey’s story.