Advanced Critical Acclaim for Fletcher Wortmann’s Triggered: A Memoir of Obsessive Compulsive DisorderPosted: November 19, 2011
Hey! Triggered was named one of Booklist’s top 10 health and science books of 2012!
Anyway, if you’re here for Triggered: A Memoir of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, you might be interested in some of our early reviews from critics:
From Judith Newman of People Magazine (three and a half stars):
In his grimly funny memoir, Wortmann, an actor and comedy writer, describes the heart-thumping panic that came with his obsessive-compulsive disorder. Only adherence to certain elaborate rituals, he believed, could ward off annihilation. Triggered is key reading for sufferers of this debilitating condition – and for those who want to understand them.
I read this over and over. Wortmann clearly and succinctly explains the exact nature of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), “the pathological intolerance of risk, however minute, and the surrender to protective ritual, however unbearable.” At least I think that’s what he wrote because I had to go run around the house three times and clap for 43 seconds before petting the dog. It’s something I do every day at 9:12 pm. Oddly, Wortmann makes it seem almost sensible to use ritual as a form of control. I mean, when I shave left handed with a right-handed razor facing north, the top of my head never blows off. Sure it’s “against probability and common sense,” but this shit works! Wortmann’s boyhood solaces (e.g., some wonderful pets) are sharply offset by various self-invented but very real tortures like an obsession/shame cycle about plastic Transformers action figures. You’d think that he’s describing the at-bat rituals of Major League ballplayers when he writes that “[e]ventually the behavior of the sufferer is entirely divorced from reality,” but he’s not. What little dark humor (akin to David Sedaris) there is can’t leaven the uncomfortably revelatory glimpses of discomfort and self-loathing that OCD has caused.
“Wortmann writes eloquently about his battles with OCD, constructing dense, dramatic prose to convey even the tiniest observations… his inspiring victories after successful treatment ring true.”
“Triggered: A Memoir of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder” is for anyone who is or knows someone who is suffering from mental illness of any type… It is difficult to judge this book because it is well-written by a man who could be writing fiction and making you laugh or cry depending on the moment… I think this book will bring many people to a new understanding of OCD because it is filled with interesting anecdotes and compelling sadness along with hopeful events.
I couldn’t put the book down. The writing is thoughtfully crafted and at times playful, even when addressing such dark subjects… Throughout the book, Wortmann offers account after account of suffering aplenty, but toward the end, some redemption. Hospitalization, exposure therapy and medication help, and Wortmann returns to school, reconnects with his family and … writes a very readable memoir.
From June Sawyers of Booklist (starred review):
“This touching and often quite funny memoir chronicles a young life perennially on the verge of emotional or physical collapse… Though meant to help anyone who suffers from mental illness, Wortman’s chronicle is also intended for the rest of us, as it sheds illuminating light on an often misunderstood and quite mysterious condition.”
More to come! Hopefully! You can also read some early excerpts of the memoir here.