The author of The Group, the groundbreaking bestseller and 1964 National Book Award finalist that shaped a generation of women, brings reminiscences of her girlhood to this intimate and illuminating memoir How I Grew is Mary McCarthy's intensely personal autobiography of her life from age thirteen to twenty-one. Orphaned at six, McCarthy was raised by her maternal grandparents in Seattle, Washington. Although her official birthdate is in 1912, it wasn't until she turned thirteen that, in McCarthy's own words, she was "born as a mind." With detail driven by an almost astonishing memory recall, McCarthy gives us a masterful account of these formative years. From her wild adolescence-including losing her virginity at fourteen-through her eventual escape to Vassar, the bestselling novelist, essayist, and critic chronicles her relationships with family, friends, lovers, and the teachers who would influence her writing career. Filled with McCarthy's penetrating insights and trenchant wit, this is an unblinkingly honest and fearless self-portrait of a young woman coming of age-and the perfect companion to McCarthy's Memories of a Catholic Girlhood. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Mary McCarthy including rare images from the author's estate.