We are where we’ve been and what we’ve read, aren’t we? Where else do we get the experience we need to evocatively live?

At once a memoir, a reading journal, and a novel, Fragments of a Mortal Mind is a daring, contemporary commonplace book. Donald Anderson, critically acclaimed author of Gathering Noise from My Life and Below Freezing, shows us how the disparate elements of our lives collect to construct our deepest selves and help us to make sense of it all. Anderson layers his personal experiences and reflections with those of others who have wrestled with inner and outer social, cultural, and political memories that are not as accurate as history might suggest but that each of us believe, nonetheless. He challenges the reader’s sense of memory and fact, downplaying the latter in explaining how each of us crafts our own personal histories.

“It is a daring and well-conceived book—one that shows us how the disparate elements of our lives gather into the construction of our deepest selves.”
—Brian Turner, Author of My Life as a Foreign Country: A Memoir

“Fragments of a Mortal Mind is at turns incisive, funny, and tender, a welcome glimpse inside the mind of a talented writer. Throughout the book, Anderson reminds us that as slippery as memory can be, that unwieldiness never diminishes its power.”
—Sara Nović, Author of Girl At War: A Novel