REVIEW: “C-a-l-l-a-s” by Katharine Coldiron

Review of Katharine Coldiron, “C-a-l-l-a-s”, Luna Station Quarterly 33 (2018): Read online. Reviewed by Sara L. Uckelman.

“C-a-l-l-a-s” is the story of Solomon’s quest to obtain access to a piece of history that has been fervently suppressed in the wake of a cataclysmic event which we, the readers, simply know of as “the bacteria”. The effects of this bacterial event are pervasive and widespread — society is now quite dystopian and dictatorial — and there appears to be a connection between it and the lack of voice, quite literally, that people have. Communication happens primarily by sign language, or by electronic voice boxes; those who are bred to be able to speak command positions of power as literal mouthpieces for the government.

In such a world, what is it that takes the role of the most sought after, most precious? Why, music of course, and Solomon’s quest is a quest for opera, and in particular, a single opera singer, Callas.

For those who wish to experience a part of what Solomon experienced at the culmination of his quest, I leave you with this.