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Book number three, the recommended read section of my www.sixbookchallenge.org is
"Remind me who I am, again" by Linda Grant
The book is a non-fiction biography written by Linda Grant who has written for the Guardian, about her mother first published in 1998.
Rose Grant is introduced to the reader immediately as her and Linda go on a shopping trip for an outfit for Rose to wear to Linda's sister ( Michele) upcoming wedding. During this first encounter you would be forgiven for thinking that this was just another average mother daughter shopping trip "You paid how much for that!" coming from the mother to daughter; but it is soon realised that Rose is no longer the average mother she has become a smaller form of herself and the repetitive question/answer mixed with slight aggressive tendencies show the reader that Dementia has started to take hold.
By chapter two the story unfolds by taking the reader back to the family history or what Linda knows of it at least. This is a sad fact of life I guess with many families these days and has actually really made me think about mine. The young are often un-enthralled by the thoughts of listening to the older generations of "how is was in my day" stories and the intricate details of who married who and who was the black sheep of the family, but this book shows we can often think we have all the time in the world to find out the history of our families at yet.......that is not always the case. I know that from reading this book I will discover more about my family from both parents while I have the opportunity. I have already found out some interesting facts!
The history of Rose and her husband, Jews coming from Russia and Poland to Britain and telling the story of there lives mainly from the 1940's and 1950's and onwards where Linda and Michele were growing up in Liverpool. Testing there parents as all teens do regardless of time.
The correlation between the two areas of the story is good and it goes to show how the Dementia can in some parts allow for history to become the present with long-term memory out lasting the short-term at least until the gradual demise of memory as we know it.
This is not a happy, fun reading book although there are glimpses of laughter and funny situations, but it does show the terrible state of Dementia and how it affects peoples lives not only the person themselves but the family members also.
Further into the book as Rose's condition worsens comes the time when she can no longer care for herself at home. This for me is perhaps the saddest part of the story, for all involved. When is the write time to give up your home? if you are still part aware that it is still your home? and as a child, when is the right time to be the parent and decide the fate of where that parent should live out the rest of there life?
The need to put into place the practicalities of such things versus the guilt that one feels when they don't understand anymore and beg you to take them home again. It is a book that will bring a tear to your eye, but very much worth the read.
I like the way that Linda has enclosed pictures of the family which gives a real identification to the story making it much more personal. She makes the book easy to read and although it is probably not the sort of book you would read again, it is a book I recommend to people especially if they perhaps have someone with dementia in the family - if not to just to realise they are not alone in the way that they feel.
The book can be found on www.Amazon.co.uk for used anything from 10pence to £5.00 new around £7 and Kindle for around £7 also.
Review maybe posted in dooyoo and ciao under the same username.