6 of 6(100%)customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Fragmented
Review 1 for Fragmented
An excellent book...
08 November 2011
This very well-written and paradoxical little book is vital reading for anyone wishing to experience London’s cultural eddies in the second half of the twentieth century. It is well titled: not only is its form fragmented, consisting of isolated yet connected stories, but these narratives revolve around the interplay between personal isolation and connection; and around the author’s chase both for passion and for inner peace. London, the backcloth, is both soothing in its constancy and disturbing as it changes. Characters, inluding the author’s, and places, recur; but changed and changing; and yet all the more real and vivid in their fragmentation under the forces of society and family. Without trying, perhaps without even intending, Worman is both subversive and conserving. He reminds us that many truly memorable and haunting moments in life, unlike in fiction, do not necessarily belong to a coherent developing plot. At some level he understands that fiction can never achieve the fragmented intensity and confusion which, from the safety of the page, it so often attempts and fails to recreate. This collection works and works well on the premise that, in the confusion and paradox of fragmented experiences - which Worman draws from a keen memory lightly spiced with imagination - there can be more truth and clarity than in the structured conceit of fiction.
In the earlier stories, to my mind the most successful part of the book, Worman captures his journey away from childhood suffering towards the comfort and discomfort, the wisdom and the folly, of a subculture trying to swim against overwhelming and uncharted currents. Some of the later stories do not have the bite of the earlier material, as Worman moves more from participant to spectator - a luxury denied to him in his uncocooned youth, but a perspective which the shelter of family and friendship later allow him. Nevertheless there is much to enjoy in the later stories: above all, this is a thoroughly enjoyable book by a writer of passion and integrity.
Review 2 for Fragmented
I love this; it's great
27 October 2011
Fragments lived up to its title by being an assortment of fragments that, in a computer age, could be shifted around, the vantage point remaining much-the-same but the circumstances ever varying and invariably interesting. The finely tuned literary feel, the care with words, now that's NOT something one sees often enough, these days. The hippy persona - 'Yeah man let it all hang out' is interpreted for a cultured gallery by an almost-hick who made good, and whose talents have taken him to the podia of academe - is overlaid by the requirements of grappling with the worldly for purposes of survival. I thoroughly enjoyed the liberated-but-bemused observer that peeped through every quietly-but perceptively observed piece of down-and-outerie in London (and Wales).
Review 3 for Fragmented
Welcome to Hackney
11 October 2011
I have a photograph on my wall of a burnt out car by Hackney Downs emblazoned with "Welcome to Hackney". It seemed funny when the previous riots had almost been forgotten and Broadway Market, where I bought it, was pretentiously hip.
What I liked about Worman's book was that it reminded one that the nature of places and people do not change in steady progression. The past bubbles up. And Worman is very funny about this. He, like the protagonist, is a middle class man in Hackney from well-to do parents. He became a squatter but gradually turned against the moral compromises that lifestyle brings. To meet him now you would think he is a well-meaning Tory. And yet I bet he secretly enjoys a little riot now and again. The apparent folly of his early self might have been right all along.
In short, he is relaxed about fragmented lives, places and communities in London. The result is warm, funny, self-deprecating, non-patronising, melancholic and - well - I rather liked the protagonist and by (a small, I think) extension, the author.
Review 4 for Fragmented
Location:Hackney, London, England
A vivid picture of urban life
14 August 2011
Jereny Worman's Fragmented is a powerful picture of a particular area - but also deals with broader themes in a constantly interesting way. Set mostly in East London's Hackney or Hornsey, it has a bigger perspective.
The first line of the book, "He was the only murder victim I ever knew". is typical of the engaging writing which both surprises and hints at deeper issues.
Whether it is writing about the yellow dress of an African woman on a bus, or trying to understand the alienated young men in Hackney or remembering the squats of Hornsey Rise, Worman has something to say to us about the world we live in - and perhaps how through understanding each other we can all grow stronger.
Writing this in the week of the Great Riots of 2011 it feels more relevant than ever.
Review 5 for Fragmented
23 June 2011
I have been following Jeremy Worman`s writing career for a long time by reading many of his short stories published in various periodicals such as the London magazine. It has been with great anticipation that I awaited his much overdue anthology of stories presented as "Fragmented" and released recently. The result has been extraordinary (and well worth waiting for) in presenting a cohesive and coherent insight into this writer and his colourful life. The stories document a world from leafy Surrey middleclass, through dropping out from private school and a torrid teenage and university life, living in squats, mixing with drug addicts, thieves and vagabonds in London and Wales. The result works so well as a collection, and is even better than a sum of all its parts. In the vignettes one learns the author acquired degrees from London and Cambridge before finally settling back into Hackney as reviewer, university lecturer, author and parent. While most anthologies can be read by dipping into, I would recommend that this brilliant collection should be read straight through to give the full effect. The stories, while often apparently vicarious, with the author appearing very much as an outsider, are clearly autobiographical. In an extremely interesting way, they often document the underbelly of society, maturing through the anthology to the husband and doting father in the latter stories. Many of the descriptions reminded me of the urban equivalent of the rural Steinbeck characters such as Junius Maltby and "Mack and the boys". It was a coincidence to me that William Boyd was referenced in the stories, as it reminded me that this is the best collection of short stories I have read since William Boyd`s "On the Yankee Station". My only criticism would be that the last 2 stories would have been better at the start, even if these were described in the sub chapter as beginnings. However, the first line of the Candyman was a great place to start. I cannot recommend "Fragmented" highly enough, and if you have not yet read this wonderful little book, do not delay any further, and read it straight through when you have a day to spare to get the full effect of its content. I can’t wait for the release of his novel.
Review 6 for Fragmented
10 June 2011
This autobiographical collection of short stories of the now Hackney based author give a great feel for London life over the last few decades - very enjoyable.