Chloe Caldwell writes with an emotional intensity that is insightful, heartfelt, and often hilarious. In her new essay collection, I’ll Tell You in Person, she perfectly captures what it’s like to try and navigate your way through the traumatic first decade of adulthood. It’s filled with a raw honesty and voyeuristic allure that’s utterly captivating. Recommended By Shawn D., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Flailing in jobs; failing at love; getting addicted and unaddicted to people, food, and drugs—I’ll Tell You in Person is a candid and captivating account of attempts at adulthood and all the less-than-perfect ways we get there. Caldwell has an unsparing knack for looking within and reporting back what’s really there, rather than what she’d like you to see.
Caldwell (Women) brings an intelligent confessional voice to this entertaining collection of personal essays about adolescence and young adulthood. She reports on her youthful hijinks involving fake ads on Craigslist on drinking and shoplifting the thrill of getting her driver’s license her roles in school plays and hitchhiking in Europe. She writes about the “enormous anxiety” she harbored in her 20s and drifting from one job interview to the next. Earnest self indulgence lies heavily on these pages with references to Caldwell’s “gluten free high horse” and her own hotness. She points to “making kale chips dentist appointments” as markers of maturity and includes lists of tedious details (“in no particular order here are some foods I’ve binged on”) which playfully convey her unrepentant self awareness. Like in her last collection Legs Get Led Astray Caldwell writes about her life with warmth humor and not a trace of apology—only this time around the stories are tamer. Agent: Chelsea Lindman Greenburger Associates. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
"Her essays are still diaristic in tone—they’re unpretentious and personal—but she draws powerful conclusions about what it means to grow into a decisive, fully formed person, if such a thing is even possible." Huffington Post
"Chloe Caldwell has written the ideal 'female companion book' — meaning, while reading I’ll Tell You in Person, I felt like I had a female companion with me at all times. On the subway, I had my female companion. In my backpack, I had my female companion. On the sidewalk, I held tight to my female companion, and pedestrians would stare at her, so boldly yellow in my hands. Pretty soon my female companion took up residency in my head. She helped me process the world with sass, spite, sympathy, and wit. I don’t know what could be better than a book that allows you to be alone but to never feel lonely. I’ll Tell You in Person does this and more. It projects the most potent afterglow, and Caldwell is a writer beyond gifted and generous. She is like a sage." Heidi Julavits, author of The Folded Clock
Caldwell tells you all her secrets in a controlled mania so you can devour them
in a more compulsive fashion. I couldn’t stop reading this book, and when I was
finished I kept looking around to see where my awesome new friend went. She’s
right in here, brimming with most excellent girldom, a commitment to experience
that feels religious, a dedication to vulnerability that likewise radiates holy
holy holy. I love this person’s life, and I love the way she writes about
it — funny and blunt and chatty and truthful." Michelle Tea, author of How
To Grow Up
she writes, a beautiful energy blazes off the page. This book kicked my ass,
heart, and brain. It’s wildly entertaining and deeply loving. A
heroic triumph in intrepid self-observation. A testament to the
heights and depths the personal essay can reach. Chloe Caldwell shows how,
in writing about ‘nothing,’ we can discover the everything. I
am going to buy Women immediately." Emma Jane
Unsworth, author of Animals
Caldwell is a brilliant essayist; one moment you’re laughing your face off and
in the next she rips out your heart. I found myself talking out loud to her
pages ('Yes, that happened to me!' and 'Wait, you did what?'). We’re in there, with her,
the hoping and the hurting and the living. I’ll go back again and again
to I’ll Tell You In Person. It’s about all of us." Megan
Stielstra, Once I Was Cool
read this book in two breathless days, and basically all I want to do now is
eat macaroni and cheese, day drink rosé, and harmonize with Chloe Caldwell. I
want to be her friend." Samantha Irby, author of Meaty
Exploring the boundaries between friends and family, hobbies and obsessions, and honesty and oversharing, Chloe Caldwell showcases an irresistible talent for navigating the infinite territory of in-between.
About the Author
Chloe Caldwell is the author of the novella Women, and the essay collection Legs Get Led Astray. Her work has appeared in The Sun, Salon, VICE, Hobart, Nylon, The Rumpus, and Men’s Health, among others. She teaches personal essay and memoir writing in New York City and lives in Hudson.
Chloe Caldwell on PowellsBooks.Blog
I’ll Tell You in Person
is sort of an anti-coming-of-adulthood voice-driven essay collection. The essays were written over the course of 2013–2016 as I was approaching 30. Some recurring themes are identity, intimacy, failure, and impulsivity. It’s not a book that will change your life, but my hope is that it’s entertaining and specific enough that readers...