It’s Official: Jessie Close’s Memoir Is My Next Book


Glenn, Jessie and Snitz

Glenn, Jessie and Snitz


For Immediate Release:

Grand Central Publishing, a division of Hachette Book Group, announced today that it will publish RESILIENCE, a memoir written by Jessie Close about her struggles and triumphant recovery from a severe mental illness.  Jessie is the younger sister of the acclaimed actress, Glenn Close, who will also contribute to the book by writing three  vignettes about her relationship with Jessie and by writing the book’s epilogue.  RESILIENCE is scheduled to be published January 1, 2015.  Hachette Audio will also release an audio edition read by Glenn Close.

Bestselling author, Pete Earley, whose own memoir about his son’s mental illness, CRAZY, was one of two finalists for a Pulitzer in 2007, will collaborate with Jessie in the telling of her intimate story. 

Deb Futter, VP, GCP and Editor in Chief Hardcovers, preempted World rights from David Vigliano at Vigliano Associates. “Jessie Close’s battle with manic depression (bipolar disorder) is not only moving but one which will resonate with the many who also suffer,” said Deb Futter. “And Glenn Close’s passionate involvement in her sister’s triumph and the current mental health challenges (we face) makes this an unusually compelling memoir.”

In RESILIENCE, Jessie will recount how she and her siblings were separated from each other and their parents after the parents joined Moral Re-Armament in the 1950s, an anti-Communist, quasi-religious group.  Uprooted and moved to an MRA facility in Switzerland, the three sisters and brother rarely saw each other. The family was further fractured after the children’s parents moved without them to the war ravaged Belgian Congo. Several years later Jessie, and eldest sister Tina, joined their parents in what was then Zaire.  Jessie’s father ran the 2000 bed city hospital in Kinshasa and served as the personal physician for the country’s president.  

Jessie began showing signs of severe depression in her early teens. She would later learn that bouts of depression ran in the family but this was a well guarded secret. To cope with her mental illness, Jessie began self-medicating with alcohol and illegal drugs at 15 and suffered wild mood swings. Later, but before she was correctly diagnosed, Jessie burned through five marriages, moved countless times, took on and quit jobs, and attempted suicide three times. Inside the Close family, she was known as the “problem” daughter and sister.

Glenn Close came to her sister’s aide repeatedly during Jessie’s darkest moments.  In RESILENCE, Jessie will describe how she hit rock bottom when her eldest son, Calen Pick, suffered a mental breakdown as a teenager and was hospitalized in a psychiatric hospital for two years. Glenn would later deliver Jessie, when she admitted to experiencing suicidal ideation, to the same hospital. 

Today, Jessie is celebrating twelve years of sobriety and has become an internationally recognized speaker and advocate for persons with mental disorders. After witnessing the struggles that Jessie and Calen faced, Glenn Close co-founded BringChange2Mind, a not-for-profit organization committed to ending the stigma and discrimination around mental health. 

Glenn calls Jessie and Calen her “heroes”.  Both sisters believe that Jessie’s illness brought them closer and helped heal some of the family’s wounds from when they were separated as children.

Glenn Close is one of the world’s most acclaimed and beloved actresses.  She’s been nominated for six Academy Awards, won three Emmys and three Tonys.  She recently starred in Sony and Directv’s Damages and in Albert Nobbs, a film she co-wrote and produced. 

Jessie and her son, Calen, both live in Montana where Calen works as an artist.  Jessie lives with her four dogs, writes poetry and blogs for

About Hachette Book Group:

Hachette Book Group (HBG) is a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre, the second-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG publishes under the divisions of Little, Brown and Company, Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Grand Central Publishing, Hachette Nashville, Orbit and Hachette Digital.

About the author:

Pete Earley is the bestselling author of such books as The Hot House and Crazy. When he is not spending time with his family, he tours the globe advocating for mental health reform.

Learn more about Pete.


  1. This is the best news I’ve heard all week. We so desperately need more people to speak up and write about their experiences with mental illness. I wish the foundations and advocacy groups would help donate the money to purchase books written from different perspectives: (consumer, family member, treating doctors, ER psychiatrists, advocates, clinics, etc.) on mental illness and just send them to the House & Senate, the media, the civil rights attorneys, judges, prisons, talk shows (like Katie), etc., and just keep spreading this knowledge and wisdom so that it permeates our society. Maybe this will help change the world and help those who suffer from mental illness. Congrats Pete!

  2. Just as JAS wrote, I as so please to know about Glenn and Jessie’s story and thank them for coming forward to present this to our country and the world. I also want my voice heard as well and would love to tell my family story to the House and Senate but is this a grassroots issue where we need to be working within our own community and state to make changes or does this require our House and Senate to pass laws mandating states to make the necessary changes. What makes sense to me is for the issue of mental illness never be swept under the carpet like it has in the past. Our history has always been that issues like this fade in time and take a backseat to other issues and we can not allow this to happen. We have lost too many innocent children to violence and lost too many innocent mentally ill people to suicide to become complacent about what needs to be done and we have to take a stand with the leaders of our nation and demand states establish programs to help our mentally ill.
    Education is where this starts and through stories told to our leaders is what is going to make a difference. We need leadership in this area as I am at a loss as to how to make my voice heard. I know many others are in my same situation. I am the grandmother of a severely mentally ill 16 year old high functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder grandson who is so severely mentally ill, three years ago he had to be removed from the home to protect the family and now lives in a MHMR group home. It has been a long 16 yr journey and I know there are families out there dealing with the same issues. Our story wants to be told but I would like to do this in the most positive way to where it will reach the ears and minds of our legislators at the state level and the national level. Suggestions are welcome.

    • Hi Ginger –

      There are autism awareness support groups – maybe some in your area. NAMI may be able to steer you in an appropriate direction. Surely, your grandson has talents and aspirations. Perhaps getting suggestions from him as to what he may like others to know, and what his hopes are for his future.

      If he responds to treatment for his serious mental illness, and has got supports in place for his autism, he may want to participate with you in telling his story. Sometimes, local newspapers/ TV stations,accept personal health related news. Often, by telling your story, locally, doors may open to tell it again. The group home he is in probably has state connections, and so, as funding,

      and other issues come up, you may find it useful to use your/his story to highlight his and the needs of others in the group home.

      Maybe get to know families of the other residents, to corroborate.

      Best of luck!


  3. Terri Wasilenko says

    I look forward to reading Resilience!

  4. I feel kinda good that Nanci and I introduced you to Jessie at the NAMI National meeting in Chicago a few years back. :-)