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Kismet: From the Joy of Romance to the Agony of Alzheimer's Paperback – October 7, 2013


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Daniel & Daniel Publishers (October 7, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1564745457
  • ISBN-13: 978-1564745453
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,107,786 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Elizabeth Gibbons Van Ingen is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, with a major in the Humanities. After living in many places in the world, raising three daughters, and adjusting to diverse traditions, she now resides in the Denver area. She has been published in two anthologies: "The Voices of Alzheimer's” and "The Voices of Caregivers,” edited by the Healing Project. This is her first book.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 15 customer reviews
It is an extraordinary story.
Jennifer Phelps
So beautifully written, vivid descriptions, such a moving story, this is one of the best books I've read recently.
Kathy Curran
It is, at once, fascinating, interesting and profound.
A Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An absorbing, beautifully written story of a marriage and of a wife’s struggle to understand and cope with her husband’s changing personality as Alzheimer’s gradually eroded his personality. A long journey, including colorful insights of Iran, Morocco and South Africa, and other places where Van Ingen's family lived for twenty years, and of Iowa, where they settled upon their return to the U.S.
Melissa
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Katherine Erickson on October 24, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
A beautiful story of good times in romantic places. She supported her husband while raising children in different cultures. He was always in charge-until Alzheimers. Very honest and unsentimental account of her life during those years and after.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 14, 2013
Format: Paperback
This is the wonderful story of a woman's life. It is, at once, fascinating, interesting and profound. The story draws the reader in to the author's life experiences which run the gamut from glamour to desperation. I loved it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Phelps on October 26, 2013
Format: Paperback
As beautifully as a carpet of Isfahan, Elizabeth Van Ingen’s poetic descriptions are woven together with symbolic themes of purpose and self-discovery. Her words pull you in and you feel like you are there with her, traveling to the next country, breathing in scents of coriander, dust, the black earth of Iowa, or walking through the chaotic, agonizing and uncharted territory of Alzheimer’s.

Through her story, we see a personal journey represented by place and experience, gold charms on her bracelet, and a Tunisian bird cage that earned a custom-designed spot in her and her husband Tony’s long-time home in Iowa.

Liz writes early on in the book: “‘Watch out the Shah doesn't get you!’ my friends had warned me as I left home in California. ‘The Shah didn't get me, but Tony did.’”

I know that Kismet will get you, too! It is an extraordinary story. Of an extraordinary woman. And, an extraordinary life.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By kathy frick on November 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was a silent character in the author's story who cheered for her, loved her, gave her advice, laughed with her, and lived vicariously through her UNTIL the many roles she had to play to survive and not lose herself in coping with her husband's Alzheimers became almost intolerable. Not only is the book well organized, but I felt like I was actually "experiencing" and "feeling" the author's life as it unfolds.

The story portrays a woman who is sincere, self-assured, and independent, yet reveals vulnerability and disappointment as life takes twists and turns which require dependability and strength. "Kismet" is a powerful read. Liz Van Ingen's story will serve as a book of survival, hope, and healing to anyone who is navigating the scary waters of Alzheimer's.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kathy Curran on November 13, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
So beautifully written, vivid descriptions, such a moving story, this is one of the best books I've read recently. Hopefully, the author will write another.
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Format: Paperback
Kismet relates how the author found unexpected depths of love and strength in order to deal with an impossible situation. But it's not simply a tale of youthful idealistic glamour versus age and degeneration.

I confess that from reading the marketing blurbs, I expected something more superficial: a fabulously beautiful couple travels the globe in wealth and ease, then the husband comes down with Alzheimer's disease and the loving wife cares for him in his last days. But this tale is so much more than that!

Liz begins her story with youthful dreams apparently coming true, but the reader gradually recognizes critical world events in the background. Liz expertly reveals the undercurrents of shifting tradition and political upheaval, shedding light on our current world conditions. I experienced all the textures and smells and colors of each culture, impressed by her ability to plunge into unknown territory and make herself a new home. But above all, this is a profound love story of two people who were clearly fated to go through life together. Liz chronicles exactly what is meant by the vow: "in sickness and in health."

This is a vibrant narrative of individual growth and awareness, of a soul's growing determination and strength of character. Liz shares specific and poignant details that bring both laughter and tears. Her observations carry a depth of wisdom that resonates in my own soul.

Do yourself a favor: don't stop before you finish this amazing book, because there's a zinger at the end that puts the rest of the book into a shocking new perspective.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ruth A. Barker on November 10, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The memoir was very well written and definitely a page turner. I bought 3 more copies to share with friends and family. I thing everyone should read this gripping story.
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Kismet: From the Joy of Romance to the Agony of Alzheimer's
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