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Book Club: Late Fragments

Posted on 27th September 2015 by Sally Campbell
Six Reasons why you should read Late Fragments - Everything I Want to Tell You About this Magnificent Life by Kate Gross


  1. I’m going to start with how funny this book is – and I really wasn’t expecting it. The humour is far from twee too – it is at times dry, at times biting and at times playful. It catches you unawares. You find yourself wincing – squirming sometimes - at the sadness of a sentiment and then suddenly belly-laughing. Kate Gross’s timing is perfect. And she swears wonderfully, I think, in it.


  2. Crucially, if you want to know what to do or say - and what not to do or say – when in the company of someone with cancer, Kate Gross has so much advice. She educates you on what is awkward for the patient – the grim, well-meant seriousness of the visitor. Her insights explain how you can interact meaningfully and, importantly, with humour. She makes the point that time is tight – and the time to have fun with the person is running out – so make the most of it.


  3. If you have always wanted to write a book – this could be your inspiration. Not only in the ‘do it now, while you still can’ sense – but in that Late Fragments is so well written. The writer is eloquent and fluent – she has a natural knack for story-telling. The turns of phrase are unique and the pace is just right…writing this good makes you all the more sorry  that the writer is no longer with us.


  4. Read a book and see the world… If you want to learn new things and experience the world from your armchair/train seat, this book takes in just about everything under the sun -  from Mongooses in Dubai, to getting angry while waiting for chemotherapy, to what it is like to be pregnant with twins. As someone with definite wanderlust, Gross spent her life travelling all over the globe. She was successful and hard-working – it is impossible not to acknowledge: she lived so much in her short life.


  5. Death will be on your mind – which is a good thing, in that we sanitize our lives and hide from the truth. We only have so much time on the planet. This book is, in essence, a testament to enjoying and doing everything you can, with the little time you have.


  6. After reading this book, you will do so many of the things you have been putting off. Late Fragments is one woman’s beautiful last words. You will hold your loved ones close, put aside pettiness, and make that phone call you have been putting off.


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