NPR's Books We Love 2023
Praise for The Wreck
"An account at once individual and universal. . . For anyone considering IVF, [Jackson's] account is invaluable; but more than that, it explores the particular experience faced by black women." —Harper's Magazine
"At the heart of Cassandra Jackson’s memoir The Wreck
is a quest to understand long-buried secrets from her family’s past. Spurred by her own journey to become a parent, Jackson investigates the circumstances of a devastating car crash that took the lives of her father’s mother, sister, niece, and first wife. Learning more about the incident leads to Jackson unearthing uncomfortable truths, not only about her family’s trauma, but also about the racism that exacerbated it—and the systemic inequality that still undermines her life."
"[An] anguished, affecting memoir. . . Jackson deftly intertwines the story of her search for the truth about 'the wreck' with her infertility struggle. . . Jackson had feared her search for answers might cause her wounded father pain; in the end, it shines a healing light."
—The New York Times Book Review
is not only a story about the long shadow of family secrets, but also a fearless, original interrogation of society’s treatment of the female body and the legacy of racism in America. It is also a story of resilience and — ultimately, renewal."—The Washington Post
"With mesmerizing lyricism and cutting insight, the author of The Toni Morrison Book Club
teaches us that any hope for the future requires an honest confrontation with the past."
"A powerful story of her journey through infertility treatment to becoming a mother."
"Cassandra Jackson exposes how the medical field has failed Black Americans, revealing her own harrowing journey of infertility treatments and revisiting the horrific car crash that took the lives of several family members in the 1960s."
"As Cassandra copes with the ever-presence of her lost family and her father’s loss, she explores racism, the past, and the journey to reclaiming a sense of self." —Zibby Owens, Katie Couric Media
"A perceptive memoir about race, love, and legacy."
"Jackson’s is an uneasy journey, finely balanced between hope and dread. She leaves readers with the knowledge that the past is just as infinite as the future—and that grief and healing alike never truly end."