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Why Did Grandma Put Her Underwear in the Refrigerator?: An Explanation of Alzheimer's Disease for Children Paperback – Large Print, June 29, 2013
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About the Author
Max Wallack is a 19 year old first year student at Harvard Medical School, as well as a researcher in the Molecular Psychiatry in Aging Laboratory at Boston University School of Medicine. Max was a caregiver to his great grandmother who had Alzheimer’s Disease, and, in 2008, he founded www.PuzzlesToRemember.org, a 501c3 organization that has supplied over 23,000 puzzles to Alzheimer’s facilities around the world. A member of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, Max gives research presentations at national conferences and publishes articles about his work in scientific journals. Max plans to become a geriatric psychiatrist, working with Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers. Carolyn Smith Given is a mother of four, a caregiver, and a resident of the Blackstone Valley in Massachusetts. Since 2000, she has taught English Language Arts and Literature at both middle and high school levels, and currently performs medical research to support her husband's multiple myeloma therapies. For fun, she attends her children's weddings, invents gourmet vegan entrees, maintains a humor blog with more than 80 first person narrative vignettes -- all true – at www.carolyngivenwriter.blogspot.com. She enjoys any and all writing projects that come her way.
Top customer reviews
My son was six when his grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. I wish I had this book to share with him so he could have had a better understanding of his grandmother's decline and his own emotions during this difficult period.
In Why Did Grandma Put Her Underwear in the Refrigerator?, the author does a wonderful job capturing the complexities of family life that includes Alzheimer's disease. He discusses the changing roles of family members, losses children may experience, and pays special attention to the value to a child remaining involved with someone who has Alzheimer's.
This book is an incredible inspiration. Thank you Max Wallack for sharing from your heart.
Written in simple, straightforward prose, with illustrations in a pseudo-childish art style that works very well in this case, it tells an intimate story about the good days now past, the troubled present, and the possibility--even if slim--of something better to come. I was struck by the effectiveness of the authors' approach and the underlying compassion. While the story is revealed through a child's eyes and in a child's mode of expression, I would recommend "Grandma" strongly as an all-ages look at loss, love, and hope. The authors are to be highly commended for their vision and their achievement.
At first, Julie didn’t understand why Grandma did things differently. But then she started to help Gran, making it easier for her to live her life. Plus it was Julie’s way of giving to someone she loved.
I read this book, looking at pictures, knowing it was supposed to be a children’s book. A way to help the young understand why parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles, anyone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, did or said odd things.
But I found a bonding with this book, because I was an Alzheimer’s caregiver. I had seen and heard the same from the dear friend I took care of.
I’m honored to have followed Max on this Alzheimer’s journey since he was 13 years old.
I know this book will help others understand Alzheimer’s/dementia more clearly.
Thanks you Max Wallack and Carolyn Given for taking the time to show us. I especially liked the Flutterby drawings.
Each page includes bright, colorful illustrations that correlate perfectly with the story, and quite frankly, I think all of us - adults and children alike - can take something positive from it. I was amazed by the amount of information presented in a book that can be read cover-to-cover in 15 minutes. Bottom line, I can't imagine there being anything out there that so thoroughly and beautifully tackles such a frightening subject. I highly recommend this book to every family touched by Alzheimer's - what a wonderful way to encourage open dialog about a very real part of life.
Chief Operating Officer
Alzheimer's Research and Prevention Foundation