Within these multi-layered tales Fleming conveys a strong sense of the humanity binding the disparate characters. Bedlam contains thought-provoking but hugely entertaining slices of life – as the blurb describes it 'everyday people in extraordinary circumstances'. The author concludes the only abnormality about people with mental health problems is the narrow mindedness that continues stigmatizing them.
The subjects cover a variety of bases but search keywords would include post-club sex, gang initiation, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar illness, casual violence, greedy bankers, blind dating, football hooliganism and death row. While none of that sounds like a barrel of laughs, more pertinent keywords would be love and hope. The characters in these stories often face adversity – misogyny, racism, small-minded attitudes to mental ill-health – but their world also crackles with energy and dark humour.
"Poetry in motion. This writer knows how to navigate the S-bends at 70 and never end up in a ditch. Creativity at its best and a bucketful of humour".
Honey Bane, musician and actor. Her latest album is Acceptance of Existence
"This anthology delivers everything - comedy, tragedy, youth culture, fantasy, love, fear and shock. The story Dragons is nail-biting stuff. It's about a teenager made to take a terrifying initiation test in order to be accepted into the local gang. US Out of Vietnam is a dark tale concerning a young woman reunited with her old flame and forced to confront a heart-wrenching truth. There is a rich diversity of characters here and Fleming takes us on an emotional journey with them".