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Finding My Father: A Search For the Truth in the Face of Alzheimer's Paperback – July 5, 2011
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About the Author
Holly Cordova Gaskin was born in Seattle, Washington, but grew up on Eastern Long Island. She is the author of a suspense novel, A Little Company (2007) and a "tween" thriller, Tricked (2009). She resides in upstate NY with her husband Pieter. Holly has worked for over over twenty years as a radio personality.
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Holly matures in to an independent woman with the skills, drive, and heart to find her father. She doesn't find her daddy right away but does reconnect with her father's side of the family. A trip across the country introduces her to love and affection never experienced yet doesn't answer her biggest question, "Where is my father?" Her father hadn't only severed ties with she and her mother, he also disconnected from his entire family. She returned with the same questions unanswered, "Where is he? Why doesn't he contact me?"
Holly's honesty and willingness to share the most difficult of situations, thoughts, and emotions reveals the little girl still within the grown woman she is today. Does Holly find her father before the book ends? Yes...and no! She, and her husband, eventually locate him and even go for a visit. Upon this visit Holly's excitement is soon crushed when she learns of health limitations and the struggles her father faces. Some of which could explain his distance after her parents' divorce and the years to follow.
If you've experienced divorce, then lost touch with one of your parents, the raw emotion of this book will resonate in your heart. If this is a concept you're not aware of, reading this book will help you appreciate all you had growing up. If you have a loved one with dementia or Alzheimer's, I recommend reading Holly's book. There are so many lessons within the covers. Lessons of relationships mended decades later, hope restored, and hurtful memories replaced with joyful ones.
The final chapters are transcripts of interviews she conducted in 2010 with medical and elder care experts with first-hand knowledge and experience with Alzheimer's disease and dementia. The reader is given an understanding of how the dreaded disease affects her father's mind and body and what she does to help him deal with the changes.
In addition to the matter of Alzheimer's disease, Holly also deals with the uncertainties that arise when one finds a lost family and wonders if she will be accepted by everbody.
While the focus is on her father, Holly's story is a relatively short, practical and readable account of what the caregiver has to face. Given the high incidences of this dreadful affliction, this book is a good introduction to the subject. I would give the book four stars fi it were not for nontraditional formatting in the front matter, some faulty copyediting, and occasional coarse language.