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Dandelion Growing Wild: A triumphant journey over astounding odds by American marathon champion Kim Jones Paperback – April 30, 2012
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"A former US marathon champ, Jones grew up in the Pacific Northwest in a family plagued by dysfunction, poverty and mental illness. Her memoir of survival and triumph is told with humor and inspiration. You don't have to be a runner to love it."
-Donnamarie Barnes - People Magazine
"Kim Jones was one of the best marathoners in the world and a familiar favorite on the roads throughout the late '80s and early 90s. With her flowing blond hair and bright smile, she looked like an all-American college girl. Her recent autobiography, however, reveals a story of a large, close-nit family full of trouble -- mental illness, drug abuse, suicide, prison -- and a life spent managing pain and finding freedom."
-Jonathan Beverly - Editor in Chief, Running Times Magazine
"Very powerful book and amazing journey, Dandelion Growing Wild by Kim Jones. A must read for every runner, I was captivated from chapter one."
-Bart Yasso - Runner's World
"For all the running in the book, it's not really a running book. It's an extraordinary, often devastating family story told unflinchingly."
-John Blanchette - Spokane Spokesman-Review
"Jones has penned a story of pathos and passion that ranks among the best and most gripping books written by a runner I've come across. "Dandelion Growing Wild" is that rare sports book that has the potential to cross over into the mainstream reading public."
-Mike Sandrock - Boulder Daily Camera
From the Author
The writing process is as personal as childbirth. And that is even truer when writing about your own life. I wrote and rewrote these words over a three-year period, even though I had conceived of the book at an earlier time. Every serious writer wants to find a voice that is true. My effort to find that voice came as I remembered events and then committed them to words. In my case the act of writing was also an act of catharsis, the spiritual healing that must come with any tragedy. I have tried to capture my life within the context of a career as an elite runner. This book, however, is not so much about the running life but rather my endurance and triumph within that life. As Faulkner wrote: "Between grief and nothing, I will take grief." This book has allowed me to move beyond even that.
My story is connected to the lives and deaths of many loved ones. I hope that my memoir honors both their memory and the dedication and courage of the loved ones they had to leave.
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Kim is not a dramatic writer. She is much more matter of fact attitude that allows her to tell her story and ultimately come out the other side as a success.