I don’t normally make my book reviews into an actual blog post, but today I decided to do just that. This book grabbed me – big time, and I just wanted to share my review with all. So here goes:
January 27 “Still Alice” by Lisa Genova. Oh. My. Gosh. I literally couldn’t lay this book down until I finished it last night at midnight. It’s a rare day when I’ll put nearly everything aside and read a book in two days, but that’s what I did with “Still Alice”. At first, when I picked this book up at Costco, I thought it was a true story. I was “into” true stories having just finished “The Glass Castle” and loving it… so I thought… “okay, let’s do it again. Another non-fiction book!! Woohoo Mizsuzee, you are not stuck in fiction-land, no, you are beginning to fill your mind with real things.” Hmmmm. Well, this book is not true. It certainly could be, though! “Still Alice” is about a 50 year old woman who begins to show signs of early onset Alzheimer’s disease… how the disease progresses… how it effects both Alice and the people in her life – her husband, children, and colleagues. The book is written from Alice’s point of view and even as she begins to get fuzzy and then fuzzier… it’s an astonishing read. Having said all that, it may not be for everyone. I have a rather intense interest in Alzheimer’s Disease. I guess you could call it an “interest”…. but “fear” might be another good word. My Grandmother developed Alzheimer’s in her 80’s – which isn’t too remarkable, unless you add on the fact that SO DID EVERY ONE OF HER FOUR SISTERS. Even in this book, which is written by a PhD who really knows her stuff, they discuss the mutated gene that runs in families. Yes, you can be tested. And no, I have absolutely NO intention of finding out now, what may happen in the future. If I remember right, none of the males in Grandma’s family developed the disease. As far as I am aware, only ONE of the children of Grandma and all of her siblings have developed the disease (that would be my second cousin, Rachel). So, do I worry about this daily? Heavens no. Is it a possibility for me? Well, yes, I do believe it is. And hence my keen interest in this book. I do suggest it as a heart-wrenching yet excellent read. At one point in the story, as Alice has absorbed her new diagnosis, she says she would trade cancer for Alzheimer’s in a heartbeat. You can fight cancer, you actually have a chance at winning. Your family and community would rally around you and find your fight noble. Even if you were defeated in the end, you could look your family in the eye and say good-bye before you left…. Wow. She is so right. What a devastating disease. To lose one’s mind. Not much more I can say about this book – except that there are not many books that receive a 5-star rating with over 300 reviews on Amazon. It’s a good one. That’s a fact.