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Still Alice by Lisa Genova
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Still Alice (original 2007; edition 2009)

by Lisa Genova

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,8643321,335 (4.23)312
Member:Brenda63
Title:Still Alice
Authors:Lisa Genova
Info:Pocket Books (2009), Edition: 1st Thus., Paperback, 292 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

Work details

Still Alice by Lisa Genova (2007)

  1. 20
    Awakenings by Oliver Sacks (dreamydress48)
  2. 10
    Tangles: A Story About Alzheimer's, My Mother, and Me by Sarah Leavitt (TransatlanticAgency)
  3. 10
    25 Months: A Memoir by Linda McK. Stewart (meggyweg)
  4. 10
    Rough Music by Patrick Gale (LynnB)
  5. 00
    Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey (Deelightful)
  6. 00
    Turn of Mind by Alice LaPlante (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Unlike the psychologically suspenseful mystery Turn of Mind, Still Alice is mainstream fiction. Despite differences in plot, genre, and feel, both sensitively portray the disorientation and disintegrating memory of Alzheimer's patients.… (more)
  7. 00
    Lost: A Novel by Alice Lichtenstein (dara85)
  8. 00
    When It Gets Dark: An Enlightened Reflection on Life with Alzheimer's by Thomas DeBaggio (Mareofthesea)
  9. 11
    The Leisure Seeker by Michael Zadoorian (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: Both books deal with Alzheimer's Disease in a compassionate way.
  10. 00
    The Forgetting: Alzheimer's: Portrait of an Epidemic by David Shenk (kathrynnd)
  11. 00
    Measure of the Heart: A Father's Alzheimer's, A Daughter's Return by Mary Ellen Geist (Mareofthesea)
  12. 01
    Kalila by Rosemary Nixon (ShelfMonkey)
  13. 02
    The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides (Deesirings)
    Deesirings: Both these books offer poignant descriptions of being within a mind-altering disease.
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» See also 312 mentions

English (316)  Dutch (8)  Finnish (3)  Catalan (2)  Swedish (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (331)
Showing 1-5 of 316 (next | show all)
I'm torn about rating this book. The writing was good, the author clearly has expertise and knowledge...but the feeling I came out with was anguish and horror. I lost two grandparents to this disease (theirs was not early onset) and reading about Alice's struggle hit me very close to home. I was angry and disappointed at how (spoiler) wound up treating her and by the time I finished the book, I was in furious tears. While I think this book may help caregivers or friends/family of Alzheimer's sufferers, it might also be overwhelming. ( )
  grammarchick | May 31, 2016 |
Review: Still Alice by Lisa Genova.

This story really tore at my heart. Lisa Genova did a great job writing this emotional heartbreak as if she was Alice. The story takes place over a two year period of time as the reader follows what happens to Alice, through her point of view and those of her caring family. Genova wrote clearly and honestly in relating this story. She couldn’t have written any better explaining what Alice and her family was going through. Her choice of words was original and clear as her characters were.

I’ve taken care of grandparents, Alice who had Dementia and Roger who had Alzheimer’s in their eighties and lived another twelve years with plenty of loving care (dieing four months of each other) and I can say I felt their frustration, as they struggled to find words or a memories from the past. They lived their fullest and near the end they where the most two wonderful human beings that kept their inner selves still intact just for family to see in their eyes that there were still themselves. They never lost loving each other for seventy years even after they forgotten their names they still knew they needed each other. It felt like Lisa Genova was telling their story.

I also, myself went through a bad accident years ago and I have long term and short term memory loss and can follow the emotions that people go through and the frustration not remembering an event or finding the right words to finish a sentence. This is an amazing story with all the right combinations of emotions, and words that so many elderly people go through.

Alice Howland and her family’s story was beautiful and terrifying. Alice was a strong woman but being diagnosed at fifty with early unset Alzheimer’s was hard for her. She was young enough to know what the future held for her and her family where as being in your eighties a person more or less slowly drifts away from reality without realizing what is happening. I felt her pain and emotional setbacks and recommend this book to all who do not understand the subject mater or the daily lives of the elderly. They are as scared as we are… some may be cranky… but love them as along as you can….
( )
  Juan-banjo | May 31, 2016 |
I sped through this book in no time at all. It was wonderful (yet heart breaking) to read.

The narrative is superb. I have never known a person with dementia, but you can certainly grasp what it feels like when reading this book. Lisa does a wonderful job at portraying the forgetfulness and repetitiveness that comes with this disease without actually being repetitive in the book. Very well done. ( )
  keyboardscoffee | May 30, 2016 |
I didn't want to put this book down last night. The Notebook was such a wonderful book about this from the loved one's perspective; this book is from Alice's perspective. Very moving. ( )
  sydsavvy | Apr 8, 2016 |
I found this novel extremely hard to read, not for any personal reason or from any personal experience, but just because of what it represented, a brilliant mind being lost. The sense of hopelessness was overwhelming at times. In fact, I thought my rating would be lower, but after finishing the book, I realize that Genova did an incredible job of portraying the realistic outcome of an Alzheimer's diagnosis. The feelings I felt are meant to be felt, and in that respect, she did an excellent job. Following Alice's story was hard, but ultimately, it was worthwhile. ( )
  hobbitprincess | Apr 8, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 316 (next | show all)
When looking for a publisher for this story, Genova was often told that it would only appeal to the Alzheimer's community. So, she self-published and self-marketed. Word of mouth spread about the universal appeal of Still Alice, and she gained an agent, a publisher, a top-10 spot on The New York Times and Globe and Mail bestseller lists, and some high praise for her compassionate page-turner. It's well deserved.
 
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Epigraph
Even then, more than a year earlier, there were neurons in her head, not far from her ears, that were being strangled to death, too quietly for her to hear them. Some would argue that things were going so insidiously wrong that the neurons themselves initiated events that would lead to their own destruction. Whether it was molecular murder or cellular suicide, they were unable to warn her of what was happening before they died.
Dedication
In Memory of Angie
For Alena
First words
Alice sat at her desk in their bedroom distracted by the sounds of John racing though each of the rooms on the first floor.
Quotations
Even then, more than a year earlier, there were neurons in her head, not far from her ears, that were being strangled to death, too quietly for her to hear them. Some would argue that things were going so insidiously wrong that the neurons themselves initiated events that would lead to their own destruction. Whether it was molecular murder or cellular suicide, they were unable to warn her of what was happening before they died.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0595440096, Paperback)

"Powerful, insightful, tragic, inspirational…and all too true." Alireza Atri, Massachusetts General Hospital Neurologist

“Readers…are artfully and realistically led through…a window into what to expect, highlighting the importance of allowing the person with the disease to remain a vibrant and contributing member of the community…" Peter Reed, PhD, Director of Programs, National Alzheimer's Association

“With grace and compassion, Lisa Genova writes about the enormous white emptiness created by Alzheimer’s in the mind of the still-too-young and active Alice. A kind of ominous suspense attends her gathering forgetfulness, and Genova puts us, sympathetically, right inside her plight. Somehow, too, she portrays the family’s response as a loving one, and hints at the other hopeful, helpful response that science will eventually provide.” Mopsy Kennedy, Improper Bostonian

"An intensely intimate portrait of Alzheimer's seasoned with highly accurate and useful information about this insidious and devastating disease." Dr. Rudolph E. Tanzi, co-author, Decoding Darkness: The Search for the Genetic Causes of Alzheimer's Disease

“Her (Alice's) thought patterns are so eerily like my own...amazing. It was like being in my own head and like being in hers.” James Smith, diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, age 45

“...something for the world to read.” Jeanne Lee, author of Just Love Me: My Life Turned Upside-Down By Alzheimer’s

“A laser-precise light into the lives of people with dementia and the people who love them.” Carole Mulliken, Co-Founder of DementiaUSA

"A work of pure genius. This is the book that I and many of my colleagues have anxiously awaited. The reader will journey down Dementia Road in a way that only those of us with Dementia have experienced. Until now." Charley Schneider, author of Don't Bury Me, It Ain't Over Yet

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:41 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Feeling at the top of her game when she is suddenly diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease, Harvard psychologist Alice Howland struggles to find meaning and purpose in her life as her concept of self gradually slips away.

(summary from another edition)

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