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Her mother, Gloria, was a brainy knockout whose fierce wit could shock an audience into hilarity or silence. Her father was James Jones, the award-winning author of From Here to Eternity and other acclaimed novels of World War II . Kaylie Jones grew up amid such family friends as William Styron, Irwin Shaw, James Baldwin, and Willie Morris, and socialized with the likes of Truman Capote, Norman Mailer, and Kurt Vonnegut. When her father died from heart failure complicated by years of drinking, sixteen-year-old Kaylie was broken and lost, which in turn left her powerless to withstand her mother's withering barbs and shattering criticism, or to halt Gloria's further descent into the bottleor that of her own.
Lies My Mother Never Told Me is a beautifully written tale of personal evolution, family secrets, second chances, and one determined woman's journey to find her own voice.
Kaylie Jones is the author of Celeste Ascending, As Soon as It Rains, and A Soldier's Daughter Never Cries, which was made into a film starring Kris Kristofferson and Barbara Hershey.
“A bright, fast-paced memoir with an inviting spirit. There is real immediacy to the family portraits here....There’s also great daughterly love for James Jones, as his daughter sometimes insists on referring to him, and palpable pride in his achievements. ”
-Janet Maslin, New York Times
“Unadorned, poignant and honest to the core, Kaylie Jones’ memoir is a light emerging from the shadows of a writing life.”
-Colum McCann, author of Let the Great World Spin
“Searing, brutally honest....What makes Lies My Mother Never Told Me such an uplifting book despite all the pain and turmoil it recounts is its revelation of how Kaylie Jones has matured as a person in dealing with her twin legacies, literary and alcoholic, and also as a writer.”
“Brilliant, touching…. Absolutely addictive, this story of struggle and triumph is a joy to read, thanks to Jones’s gift for handling dark material with humor and grace…. a treasure for fans of literature and literary memoirs, as well as anyone who’s coped with alcoholics in the family.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)