While the author stays “hopeful” in his stories, he also delves deep into the messy, painful, realness of humanity. His characters struggle and stumble their way through the darkness of grief, depression, and suicidality (“Grave Knowledge” and “The Misery of Hope”, disappointed dreams (“Glory Days” and “Waiting for Buscemi’s Call”), dysfunctional and wounding family histories (“Central Park Wedding”, “Father’s Day” and “Saying Good-bye”), cultural divides that bring judgment (“The Last Call”), break-ups involving close friends and family (“Boys in the Band” and “Fakebook Friends”), conflicted lovers (“Finding Faith” and “Toda La Noche”), and the pain, fear and sadness that comes from impending loss of beloved pets (“Saving Par”), eyesight (“Blind-Sight”), and “virility” due to aging (“One Night in Elvis”). These are some of the road blocks and obstacles that play out in the lives and relationships of Surace’s characters.
CHAP 1- FAMILY
FATHER’S DAY– A therapist deals with his own daddy issues—while his wife discovers that a cigar is not just a cigar.
FAKEBOOK FRIENDS— When defriending people on FB includes close family members.
CENTRAL PARK WEDDING– On her wedding day, a bride’s cold feet, are warmed up by her loving step-mother.
CHAP 2- FRIENDSHIP
BOYS IN THE BAND– Can a rising rock-star forgive an old friend who “sold out” and left his band- for a steady job.
SAVING PAR– The zen of golf and a good friend help one hothead to stay calm even when faced with an impossible shot .
THE LAST CALL– Two wise guys in a NYC nightclub bond with a broken loser.
WAITING FOR BUSCEMI’S CALL– Two high-school buddies discover the true measure of friendship– while waiting for an important phone call.
CHAP 3- LOVE
FINDING FAITH– A broken up couple discovers how an aquarium can help to solve their problems.
TODA LA NOCHE – A married couple learns to negotiate their cultural and personal differences.
BLIND-SIGHT– A woman, fearful to receive a stranger’s cornea learns that her vision was better than she’d ever imagined.
ONE NIGHT IN ELVIS– Two married, middle-aged Elvis impersonators- call upon their iconic hero to rekindle the spark in their marriage.
CHAP 4- REDEMPTION
GLORY DAYS – A High-School reunion has a local baseball hero confronting the reality of his broken dreams.
GRAVE KNOWLEDGE– A tale of two gravestones; when a suicidal Marine who has his plans interrupted– when a grieving Catholic school teacher suddenly arrives.
THE MISERY OF HOPE – Two angels suddenly appear (one good/one bad)- when a suicidal man utters the words “I wish I was never born.”
SAYING GOOD-BYE– A poignant and powerful reunion of an estranged father and son.