DiscoverLiterary Fiction

Tedeskimma

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Worth reading 😎

If SKIMMA, a child's stuffed animal, could talk, it would tell the stories of pain and poverty, joy and triumph of its many owners.

Synopsis

TEDESKIMMA is a vast, grim, bittersweet, character driven epic, set in a dark, dystopian world. This tale tale deals with a wide variety of themes, and the canvas this story is painted on is as vast as it is diverse.

This book takes whoever chooses to experience it on an epic journey across a planet, one that is beautiful and breathtaking, and yet, often dangerous and apathetic. The themes this book delves into are explored through the lives of the characters that make up the various parts of the book. There are 11 such characters in all; 11 stories that are smaller books unto themselves. However, each of these stories is connected to the others in the most surprising of ways.

These individual stories span a wide variety of genres. Some of them are adventures that chronicle violent events, while others are tragic tales of separation, abandonment and loss. However, within all this darkness, there exist numerous rays of light. There are tender, loving moments, and a few happy, even if ultimately bittersweet, endings as well.

Imagine that Winnie the Pooh’s mutant sibling joined the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants and embarked upon a journey through a dystopian Orwellian world. That’s not far from the premise of 100Lick’s story collection, “Tedeskimma.” The doughty protagonist is a stuffed Tedeskimma — SKIMMA, for short— a beast which inhabits remote corners of the planet UWA and looks like a cross between an albino squirrel and a bighorn sheep: 


“It was an animal of some kind. Bright white all over, just like her hair, with blue eyes that were lighter than hers. Its head had huge, ever expanding horns, and a long bushy tail was attached to its behind. The creature’s hands were similar to hers, but its legs were exactly like its hands…”


SKIMMA is given to a girl named UMA on her birthday, although it changes hands eleven times in the course of this book. Each of the creature’s new owners’ stories are told in separate chapters. Among them are OMLI, a boy who lives in a slum and works in the mines; BUNS a bitter lesbian mercenary who considers SKIMMA a lucky charm; DIIN, a girl whose impoverished family undertakes the perilous journey to a new country; VONDUR, a fulminating bigot who works at an immigrant detention facility; and CHOTY, a precocious lad growing up amid gang violence and drug dealing.


Because SKIMMA is a silent, non-judgmental listener, people feel compelled to tell it their innermost thoughts and feelings. It also bears witness to their plights, suffering, and occasional triumphs. 


These variously troubled folk dwell on UWA, which apart from having three suns and three moons, is much like Earth. Indeed, its citizens suffer from the same social and environmental malaises that afflict our own blue planet. Each chapter illustrates some form of bias or injustice. The characters are icons representing different populations affected by these conditions—refugees, sexual minorities, victims of abuse, etc. As such, they evoke principles over personalities; some of them are little more than caricatures of a belief system or social group.


“Tedeskimma” is an audacious undertaking with bold scope and an urgent morality. Still, the stories feel more expository than narrative. The dialog often lapses into lecture mode. While individually engaging, the chapters are unconnected, apart from the transfer of SKIMMA from one to the next, and a contrived ending.  Overall, the story cycle is compelling, but its lessons are somewhat belabored. 

Reviewed by

Gregg Sapp is author of the “Holidazed” satires. The first three books are “Halloween from the Other Side,” “The Christmas Donut Revolution,” and “Upside Down Independence Day,” with “Murder by Valentine Candy” forthcoming. Previous books are "Dollarapalooza" and “Fresh News Straight from Heaven.”

Synopsis

TEDESKIMMA is a vast, grim, bittersweet, character driven epic, set in a dark, dystopian world. This tale tale deals with a wide variety of themes, and the canvas this story is painted on is as vast as it is diverse.

This book takes whoever chooses to experience it on an epic journey across a planet, one that is beautiful and breathtaking, and yet, often dangerous and apathetic. The themes this book delves into are explored through the lives of the characters that make up the various parts of the book. There are 11 such characters in all; 11 stories that are smaller books unto themselves. However, each of these stories is connected to the others in the most surprising of ways.

These individual stories span a wide variety of genres. Some of them are adventures that chronicle violent events, while others are tragic tales of separation, abandonment and loss. However, within all this darkness, there exist numerous rays of light. There are tender, loving moments, and a few happy, even if ultimately bittersweet, endings as well.

The Birthday

“Happy Birthday, little doll. Happy Birthday, my little UNA,” her father said, as he threw her up in the air, and watched as she tried to touch the ceiling before gravity caught up with her.

“Thank you, Daddy!” the child replied, smiling, as she landed back in her father’s arms.

“What is a birthday, Daddy?” UNA asked a few seconds later, as she played with her father’s ever growing facial hair. Fiery red locks that seemed to have become longer and softer since she last played with them. They always fascinated her. They seemed to have a life and mood of their own. Some days they were shorter and scragglier, others where they felt as soft, and as long, as the thick blue hair on her mother’s head. Where did they come from? Why didn’t she have any of her own? What kind of magic made them change so often?

“A birthday is a day when you get a gift,” her father said. UNA instantly snapped out of her trance.

“Where is it?” she screamed, doing her best to jump off him.

“Hold on now. You have to find it.”

She stared into his dark yellow eyes, trying her best to contort her tiny gray skinned face into the expression that always made him relent to her wishes, while he continued to laugh as he stared back into the deep blue hues of hers.

“Nice try, my little doll. But it won’t work today. Besides, it wasn’t my idea. I don’t even know where it is,” he said, motioning towards her mother, who stood a few feet away from him. She looked up at them and flashed a mischievous smile, as she plopped the last candle into the cake she was hunched over.

“Give me. Give me,” her mother said, as she spread her arms.

UNA screamed with joy as she was tossed from one parent to the other for the next few minutes.

“Enough,” her mother said, as she sat down with UNA, panting.

“Where is it?” UNA asked again, contorting her face when she was greeted with silence.

Her mother laughed and gave her a big kiss. “It’s hiding from you, little doll.”

“Why?” UNA asked, as she rubbed her cheek.

“Same reason you hide from us. It’s playing with you,” her father said, as he came over and picked her up again. He threw her towards the ceiling one final time before he set her on the ground.

“Come on. Let’s go find it. You know all the hiding spots. Lead the way, little doll.”

About the author

100LICK is a unique brand, unlike any other. It is also the pseudonym I write under. 100LICK is also a puzzle, one that you must solve. Within its logo lie the clues that will lead you to the answer. As for who I am... Well, that shall remain a mystery for now. Why? You ask. Why not? I answer. view profile

Published on October 28, 2019

Published by

140000 words

Contains explicit content ⚠️

Genre: Literary Fiction

Reviewed by

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