Bald in the Land of Big Hair

Good Housekeeping Bonus Book and Readers Digest Select Editions Best Nonfiction of 2001


"Rodgers lives, loves, and thankfully, writes without a safety net…a mix of Molly Ivins’ blowsy wit and Anna Quindlen’s suburban logic…(Rodgers) manages the rare literary feat of being painful and funny in one urgent breath." Entertainment Weekly


"Thoroughly enjoyable, idiosyncratic, and funny…an uplifting celebration of life." London Daily Mail


"Candid and amusing…" People Magazine


"Gutsy…impressive…engaging honesty…and a steady supply of wisecracks." New York Times


"Memoirs of a cancer survivor with a delicious sense of humor and a well-defined sense of self. Darkly comic…inspiring…" Kirkus


"Funny…heartbreaking…free-spirited." Library Journal


"This is the stuff of book club discussions." Publishers Weekly


"Bald in the Land of Big Hair is a very important book. It’s like reading an adventure story and a humor story and a love story and a tragedy and a deeply spiritual story all at once. ...It’s also a book about how to ground yourself in the life you’re living. It’s about how to let go of false concepts of beauty and of self, and start living a far richer, truer life than you might ever have imagined. ...makes you laugh more than cry, I promise, and has an ending that will make you want to leap up and cheer... I say again, this is a very important book. Read it.” From Elizabeth Berg’s foreword for Bald in the Land of Big Hair: 10th Anniversary Edition


FIRST YOU WRITE: The Worst Way to Become and Almost Famous Author and the Best Advice I Got While Doing It

"Rodgers’ writes with wit and candor not only about her circuitous route to becoming a New York Times bestselling memoirist (Bald in the Land of Big Hair, a searingly funny account of her journey through cancer) and a critically acclaimed small-press novelist (Crazy for Trying; Sugar Land), but also about her pioneering adventures in self-publishing on Kindle. Rodgers’ willingness to experiment (isn’t that what artists do?) and to turn preconceived publishing notions on their ear is wonderfully refreshing, and her whip-smart observations will keep you turning (virtual) pages."  Dawn Raffel, Center For Fiction: Essential Books For Writers

Crazy for Trying

Barnes & Noble Discover Award finalist


"Think Jane Eyre with rock’n’roll." Houston Press


"Terrific…a rollicking ride through emerging feminist sensibilities." Billings Gazette


"A fresh pleasure…Rodgers writes unconventional love scenes that scorch the pages." Orlando Sentinel


"Refreshing and provocative…" Houston Chronicle


"Truly captivating…Rodgers’ prose and style are unique." Texas Books in Review


"Joni Rodgers can write sex scenes that’ll make your toes curl and your hair stand on end. At her best, her prose is dazzling, risky, and intoxicating, and at its heart, Crazy for Trying is an inspired debut." Pam Houston, bestselling author of Cowboys Are My Weakness



PMA Benjamin Franklin Award finalist


"Heartbreaking and hilarious... Every character in this novel resonates with life. This talented author knows how to bring pen-and-ink people to flesh and blood fulfillment…poignantly authentic." Southern Living


"Alternately wrenching and humorous…Rodgers’ strength is her knack for realistic characters…and a womanly wise, laugh-through-tears appreciation of life." Publisher’s Weekly


"Richly appealing…" Library Journal


"Bittersweet…priceless…" Chicago Tribune


"Pure charm…compelling…full of humor and compassion. Sugar Land is a delight to read, and Rodgers is a terrific discovery." Tampa Tribune-Times


The Secret Sisters

"There is a sweet wickedness in this one." Austin Chronicle


"Believable...brilliant...beautifully written..." Armchair Reviews


"Honesty, humor, and fearlessness... illuminates the internal landscapes all women navigate." Houston Chronicle


"A page turner, full of surprises, insight, and spine-tingling erotica..." Helena Independent Record


"A rough gem of a narrative...Pia's tale has it all: death, danger, sexual discovery, and resurrection." Missoula Independent


"An emotional maelstrom worth getting wrapped up in." Easton Express-Times


"A modern tragedy...Rodgers wisely resists the temptation to whip up tidy endings, and her smart choices give The Secret Sisters the necessary measure of grit." Texas Monthly


"Rodgers' tale finds its full measure as a story of a woman who comes through the most painful losses with a renewed appreciation for life." Booklist




Mayte Garcia, choreographer, dancer, former wife of Prince and member of New Power Generation: “Joni Rodgers, you are the light in the dark room I was in. Thank you for hearing and helping me with my story. The grid is real!”


Elizabeth Smart, NYT bestselling author, activist, and advocate: “Joni Rodgers, my stalwart Sherpa and friend throughout the writing process, helped me build a vehicle for my vision and opened my eyes to what I'm capable of on my own.”

Aaron Sorkin, Oscar winning screenwriter of The Social Network: “Joni Rodgers is a pure storyteller. She writes with a wit, lyricism, humanity and joy that make her books impossible to put down.”


Amie and Jolie Sikes, cofounders of the Junk Gypsy retail/design empire: “Oh, the magic you weave with bulk quantities of Post-it notes. Behold, the STICKY-GRID MOJO, without which we would have been lost. You were able to wrap your heads around a project that has seemed insurmountable to us for ten years. You tamed my ellipses and run-on sentences and Amie’s infinite brainstorms. We could never thank you enough for your guidance, your organization, your help, and most of all, your patience and your friendship.”


Swoosie Kurtz, Tony, Emmy, Obie, and Drama Desk Award winning actress: “Joni Rodgers, if I could write like you, I would have the words to tell you that your genius vision turned black and white into Technicolor, amusement into hilarity, touching into heartbreaking, and a very interesting life into a literary page-turner. That is what I believe they call art. You promised to be my Sherpa on this mountain climb. You have also been my friend.”


Tom Brokaw, broadcasting legend: “Part Swan, Part Goose is a brave and riveting book about family, fame, theater and life. It is witty, wise and irresistible. I loved it.”


Carol Burnett, comedy icon (on PSPG): “I laughed and cried (sometimes at the same time) reading this extraordinary story about Swoosie and her parents and her work and her loves. Swoosie has the beautiful gift of a seasoned storyteller. Her observations about love and loss had me dog-earing several pages to re-read again and again. I feel blessed to know her.”


Nancy Brinker, founder and CEO of Susan G. Komen for the Cure: “Joni Rodgers is a talented, compassionate writer with an uncanny ability to see connections between anecdotes and ideas. She really listened to me, then used my memories and my message to create a beautifully woven tapestry of emotion, science, history, and meaning. Both I and my publisher have been blown away by Joni's project strategy, vigilant research, and professionalism every step of the way. I grew to trust her as a collaborator and value her as a friend.”


Kristin Chenoweth, Emmy and Tony Award winning actress/singer: “When S & S talked to me about doing a book, I wanted to find a ghostwriter to help me say what I wanted to say clearly and honestly. I met with many people, but I believe God plopped Joni Rodgers in my lap on purpose. She never missed a deadline, laughed at all my jokes, and became a member of my family, someone I trust implicitly.”


Rue McClanahan, Broadway actress and star of TV's Golden Girls: “I'm so glad my editor recommended Joni Rodgers to be my book Sherpa. Joni made gorgeous cream pies out of my curds and whey. An enormously talented writer, a wonderful friend.”


Mehmet Oz, M.D., host, The Dr. Oz Show: “Promise Me emotionally and elegantly chronicles how sisterly love changed the course of modern medicine...”


Linda Armstrong Kelly, mom of embattled sports icon Lance Armstrong: “It was truly an illuminating experience... and for that, I'd like to thank my memoir guru, Joni Rodgers. She is simply the best.”


Ellen Rogers, author of Kasey to the Rescue (featured in O Magazine): “A giant and heartfelt thank you to Joni Rodgers for your compassion, talent, and humor in helping me bring our family's story to life. Stay frosty, as I learned from you.”