What a remarkable story! I had never heard of the brain injury known as Left Neglect and was fascinated by the details of this condition. After “GooglWhat a remarkable story! I had never heard of the brain injury known as Left Neglect and was fascinated by the details of this condition. After “Googling” it, I was satisfied that the author had not fictionalized the description and consequences of this disabilitating loss. It was impossible for me to imagine what this must be like!
Lisa Genova has created some strong characters that make the tale come alive with actions that are happy, sad, tragic, rewarding, frustrating, humorous, challenging, loving, on and on! While the focus of the story is on Sarah’s rehabilitation, the plot also involved themes of ADHD, workaholics, forgiveness, materialism, mother/daughter relationships, decision making, etc. Most are believable and realistic, but a few are definitely added to make for a captivating novel. I couldn’t help but wonder how many people could approach this disorder as humorously as Sarah did, but I would like to think that there are some out there who can. Also, what keeps this from getting a rating of five from me is that there were several circumstances that “just happened” to fall into place at the right times that took away from the realism. However, what I found most appealing about this novel was the author’s witty style of writing. I learned a great deal from this book and highly recommend it. ...more
I really benefited from reading this novel. With the actual opening of the WTC Memorial having recently occurred when I started this book, it was espeI really benefited from reading this novel. With the actual opening of the WTC Memorial having recently occurred when I started this book, it was especially interesting to read at this time. I also appreciated discovering an article about the architect (Michael Arad), who designed the real memorial - thanks, to Goodreads’ member, McKensie.
The complex personalities involved in this story made it seem very authentic. I can visualize a committee of people arguing about choosing a winner in the competition to design this project and the conversations of neighbors on the streets after the winner was announced. The conflict of Americans not wanting a Muslim to be selected was all too real. I wish the blurbs about this book had not given that away - what a shock it would have been to the reader to be in on the opening of that envelope! And what a whole different story had his name been written just “Mo.”
I experienced many feelings while reading this book: angry and ashamed about people misunderstanding various cultures and judging others before knowing anything about them; furious about the newspaper woman’s approach to her gathering “facts” just for an exclusive (I then felt I was not reading a novel!); and sad, all over again, for the 9/11 victims and their families.
The favorite part of this book for me was the epilogue. I never suspected the importance of the photographer, and the descriptions in this chapter gave me a peaceful, hopeful feeling. ...more
I enjoyed this book, but can't really rave about it. I was looking forward to learning more about the ASL experiment with the bonobos, and those partsI enjoyed this book, but can't really rave about it. I was looking forward to learning more about the ASL experiment with the bonobos, and those parts were the best, but I was looking for more. I guess I should read the nonfiction books the author mentioned in her notes. I didn't find Gruen's writing as polished as it was in her Water for Elephants. Some of the fictional parts of this story were pretty contrived at times, but I must admit, she did make me laugh.
As Robert Goolrick wrote on the back cover, "Devour it to...learn remarkable and moving things about life on this planet." The actions of the apes on their own, mimicking humans, was enlightening! Many of them seem smarter than humans we read about (or might know)! The human characters were quite varied in their personalities. "Don't rely on first impressions" came to mind often. I liked most of these quirky people. If you like a quick, light read, I can recommend this book.
The two main characters, the Major and Mrs. Ali, were delightful, intelligent, and very witty. I loved their sarcasm! It was also refreshing to read aThe two main characters, the Major and Mrs. Ali, were delightful, intelligent, and very witty. I loved their sarcasm! It was also refreshing to read a story about widows and widowers falling in love again.
At times, I found some of the prose too descriptive to my liking; but at other times, the words the author chose were perfect - creating a beautiful picture of the setting, or making me feel like I really knew the characters. (It was easy to dislike Roger!) It was not a page-turner for me, but I did enjoy going back to it each time I picked it up. This is strong 3.5 for me, not quite a 4.
While expecting, and enjoying, a love story and British humor, I was pleasantly surprised at the seriousness of some of the book's other themes: society rituals, different cultures, generations, religion, family obligations, etc.
I was impressed with the writing of this first-time author, and I hope to read more from her soon....more
I enjoyed this book as a comparison of my life to the lives to this group of women; but I had expected to find more humor in it. I feel the author, beI enjoyed this book as a comparison of my life to the lives to this group of women; but I had expected to find more humor in it. I feel the author, being a reporter, stuck too much to the facts, and did not dig deep enough into some experiences and could have included more anecdotes. I found myself at the end of several paragraphs saying, "...and THEN what happened?" I did, however, appreciate his astute observations on the importance of long-lasting friendships, and it renewed my gratefulness for the close group of grade school and high school friends I still see! I wish this for everyone! ...more
Still Alice was an informative, page-turning read for me. After having experienced the struggle of Alzheimers with my step-father-in-law, John, this tStill Alice was an informative, page-turning read for me. After having experienced the struggle of Alzheimers with my step-father-in-law, John, this topic has intrigued me greatly. What a cruel disease this is! I wondered over and over, "What is going through his mind?" Lisa Genova tries to imagine what this is like and writes from a first person point of view, which makes it seem quite real. I agree with her interpretation of the early stages of this illness, but there is no way that I know of that she can explain the later stages, because the victim is incapable of expressesing these ideas. However, being a work of fiction, I will give her credit for writing a somewhat plausible possibility. This story is very sad, but also worthwhile to help anyone dealing with these issues. The reactions of each family member involved was quite interesting, and proved that one never knows how a person will react. This is definitely a "family" illness; the surrounding people suffer terribly along with the individual. My Pollyannish personality wants to believe that "Alice" (and John, and all others who suffer from this illness) did not realize what was happening near the end. ...more
I had trouble rating this book; it is definetly a page-turner, so why only two stars? I found the storyline riveting, but the writing style took me maI had trouble rating this book; it is definetly a page-turner, so why only two stars? I found the storyline riveting, but the writing style took me many pages to get used to - overly simplistic at times. I also felt that it had too many frivolous descriptions; I found myself skimming to find actions, feelings, and more dialogue. During the first half of the book, I was saying, "I do not like this book at all," but as I read further, I discovered the value of it as a lesson to be learned about how one poor decision can be tremendously devastating to so many lives, and what a snowballing effect each action and reaction has. Perhaps the reality of the choices (of both the adults and the teenagers) as a sign of the times was too depressing for me! As another reviewer mentioned, I agree that this could be a useful book for a high school class discussion, but some teachers may have trouble getting through the first few pages in a classroom setting. I am usually a Shreve fan, but this one gets a three for plot; a one for style; hence, an average of two....more