I resisted reading this book for months. Yes, I heard wonderful things about it, but the subject matter turned me off. In fact it down right scared me. A 50-year-old woman who is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s. Why would I read this book? Why would I do that to myself? I guess I had a weak moment. I was at the library looking through their selection of Playaways and there was Still Alice. I picked it up and read the back as I have done on several other trips to the library. This time I did not place it back in its spot on the shelf. This time I took it home with me, popped in a triple A battery and pushed play.
Dr.Alice Howland lived in Cambridge with her husband John and had 3 grown children. She was a Harvard professor, loved her early daily runs and enjoyed walking to work. When Alice started misplacing things, especially her blackberry she was not too concerned. After all she was 50 years old. When she googled Menopause she was reassured that forgetfulness was a common complaint among women her age. But when she began to forget words and even became disoriented during one of her runs she decided that it would be a good idea to see a doctor. What could it hurt, surely her doctor would just confirm that, yes, it was Menopause and it was normal.
42 West Street
But it was not normal. Alice could not remember and could not repeat the name and the address the doctor had told her just minutes before. Alice received the most devastating news she could imagine. She had Alzheimer’s and she was smart enough and with it enough to know exactly what was going to happen to her and to her family.
42 West Street
Still Alice was a beautiful book and yes I am glad that I read it. It seemed to give a very realistic picture of this terrible disease, how it progresses and how it affects the entire family. It was a wonderful audio book and probably one of the most touching books I have listened to in a long time. I laughed and I cried along with Alice and her children. I took the memory tests along with her and have to admit that I began to get a little paranoid. After all, I misplace my phone all of the time and am terrible with names. Should I be worried or is it just Menopause? I will probably never forget this book or John Black and his West Street address.
Still Alice…. a 5+ omelet book. Did you read it? I would love to hear your thoughts!