For Readers of Jonathan Tropper and Philip Roth, the Darkly Comic, Poignant Story of a Man Caught Between the Aspirations of Youth and the Realities of Middle Age--Called "A Perfect Riff on What It Means to Be Human in This Unsettled Age" (Ren e Montagne, NPR) Meyer is filled with dread. His fading musical aspirations, his tyrannical CEO, his ex-wives, his exiting girlfriend, his elderly father, his beloved and troublesome children, and his confused and bewildered life all attest to his conviction that the sky will soon fall on his head. And then it does.
This is the story of a man adrift in anxiety, ill fortune, and comic mishap, buffeted by the existential and prosaic concerns that modern life in Los Angeles inflicts. Forty years old, caught in the netherworld between the reckless optimism of youth and the resignation of age, Meyer tries to find handrails and ballast.
Funny, intellectually probing, and poignant, Imperfect Solo follows the flailing and hapless Meyer as he seeks hope and redemption while his world unravels around him. Surrounded by the absurdities of a fading America, the affection of flawed but well-meaning friends and family, and the randomness of everyday life, he tries gamely to stay afloat.
He must navigate love lost and found and lost again, the indignities of aging, the courage to stand up to assholes, and the search for the perfect sax solo. Will Meyer find grace? Can he, or we, ever?
Steven Boykey Sidley is an award-winning and multi-shortlisted novelist. He was once a software engineer and can often be seen playing saxophone in bands around town. An American citizen, he lived most of his adult life in the Hollywood depicted in this book. His first novel, Entanglement, won the UJ Debut Fiction Award and was shortlisted for the Sunday Times Fiction Prize and MNet Literary Award in South Africa. His second novel, Stepping Out was shortlisted for the UJ Main Fiction Award. Imperfect Solo is his third novel. So far it has been longlisted for the Sunday Times Fiction Prize in South Africa and selected for Le Grand Livre du Mois, France's most prestigious national literary book club. He currently lives in Johannesburg with his wife, Kate, and their two children.