Steve Matchett's thought-provoking short story - Fragments from France - has proved one of the author's most popular pieces of memoir writing. This atmospheric tale was first published in his highly acclaimed collection of short stories, These Desired Things. This new audiobook sees "fragments" elevated in status - this truly essential story of First World War survival now narrated as a compelling "live performance edition" with the text delivered in three distinct acts: the listener immersed in a theater-style reading of the work, as though sitting in the packed orchestra stalls of a live show.
Through his masterful use of differing English dialects and accents, Steve Matchett's uncanny ability to bring his characters to life, seemingly so effortlessly, is a joy to behold. The story itself is set amid the author's tranquil childhood when, one snowy day, back in the early 1970s, Mr. Goodman, a former infantryman, decides to share his Great War experiences with the young boy - this the first time he has talked with anyone of his horrific military experiences in the vile, gas-filled trenches of the first world war.
The stark truth of the realities of that ghastly conflict are harrowing in the extreme - and that one snowy day spent listening to an old man's wartime memories would change the entire course of the author's adult life. This collectors' audiobook also includes an exclusive interview with the author - a wonderfully warm, revealing Q&A session in which Steve Matchett discusses, among other things, the backstory behind his book's title.
This forthright Q&A also sees Matchett give more insight into the book's central character, the remarkable Mr. Goodman; and the author also talks of his fascination with the events of the Great War itself. All things considered this "live performance edition" audiobook is a recording to enjoy over and over again - a volume to be kept forever safe, its lessons shared with future generations. Lest we forget.