Pub Date 05 Sep 2017
". . .reminiscent of Joyce Carol Oates. The work’s lasting message is that love, like Jarrell’s prose, is both painful and beautiful. A stunning series of recollections with a feminist slant."
―Kirkus Review (STARRED)
“Brave, clear-eyed, compelling and powerful, I’m the One Who Got Away is a riveting story of love and survival. Andrea Jarrell is an uncommonly fine writer whose gritty realism is matched by the rigor and elegance of her prose. This is a wonderful debut.”
―Dani Shapiro, Hourglass and Still Writing
“I was enthralled. Andrea Jarrell is a stunning writer, moving deftly through decades in near-cinematic prose (seriously: somebody make this book into a movie!). We’re with her in LA, imagining her largely absent father; in Austin, knowing she took a wrong turn; in Maine and D.C. realizing how our childhoods tangle with our grown-up selves. I’m thinking about how imagination is as much a part of memoir as lived experience. I’m thinking about what it means to live in curiosity, not judgment. I’m thinking that I need to stop what I’m doing and read this book again. Like, immediately."
―Megan Stielstra, The Wrong Way to Save Your Life and Once I Was Cool
“Andrea Jarrell's beautiful memoir―her adventurous yet protective single mother; insinuating father/stranger; friends and encounters, lovers and spouse, templates of what she must move beyond, accept, or embrace to become bravely herself―is as riveting as a mystery and as filling as a feast.”
―William O'Sullivan, Washingtonian magazine
“Beautifully told with great wisdom and clear-eyed courage, Andrea Jarrell has mapped her personal journey in life―the fears and obstacles and losses as well as the joys and comforts of love and finding her own sense of home. I could not put it down.”
―Jill McCorkle, Life After Life and Going Away Shoes
"Andrea Jarrell lets us join her as she gets away, lets us feel the thrilling trajectory of escape as she breaks through familial and personal patterns into a freer, more joyful life. This honest, thoughtful memoir is written with great compassion; Jarrell’s love for her family, and for her own journey as a woman, rises off the page, even in the most painful moments. She reminds us to be our own liberators, our own witnesses, to appreciate the majesty of our own everyday world."
―Gayle Brandeis, The Art of Misdiagnosis: A Memoir and The Book of Dead Birds
“Haunted by her father’s absence and riveted by her single mother’s cautionary tales, Andrea Jarrell longed for the ‘stuff of ordinary families’ even as she was drawn to the drama of her parents’ larger-than-life love. In her wise and resonant memoir, Jarrell revisits stories starring wolves in cowboy clothing and lambs led astray by charming savior-saboteurs, to lovingly recount how she escaped a narrative she'd learned by heart and wrote her own version of a happy life.”
―Elizabeth Mosier, The Playgroup and My Life as a Girl