After her adoptive mother’s death, Lori Jakiela, at the age of forty, begins to seek the identity of her birth parents. In the midst of this loss, Jakiela also finds herself with a need to uncover her family’s medical history to gather answers for her daughter’s newly revealed medical ailments. This memoir brings together these parallel searches while chronicling intergenerational questions of family. Through her work, Jakiela examines both the lives we are born with and the lives we create for ourselves. Desires for emotional resolution comingle with concerns of medical inheritance and loss in this honest, humorous, and heartbreaking memoir.
Throughout, her love of language remains uniquely her own, enabling her to weave a beautifully-crafted tapestry of image and insight that ultimately enables her to string together a fragmented self.—Nancy McCabe, Ploughshares
Readers who wander into Lori Jakiela’s world fall into a broken-in honesty, full of warmth and wit. It’s like hanging with your best friend, only with more wry humor, withering candor and the lack of affect which is the best of the rust belt.—Jody DiPerna, Pittsburgh Current