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Blue Hydrangeas

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What if the person who knew you best and loved you most forgot your face, and couldn’t remember your name? A nursing facility is everyone's solution for what to do about Sara, but her husband, Jack, can't bear to live without her. He is committed to saving his marriage, his wife, and their life together from the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease. He and Sara retired years ago to the house of their dreams, and operated it as a Cape Cod bed and breakfast named Blue Hydrangeas. Jack has made an impossible promise: He and Sara will stay together in their beautiful home no matter what the disease brings. However, after nine years of selfless caregiving, complicated by her progressing Alzheimer’s and his own failing heart, he finally admits he can no longer care for her at home. With reluctance, he arranges to admit her to an assisted living facility. But, on the day of admission, Sara is having one of her few good days, and he is unable to follow through. Instead, he takes them on an impulsive journey to confront their past and reclaim their future. In the end, he realizes that staying together at any cost is what truly matters.

234 pages, Paperback

First published April 22, 2013

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About the author

Marianne Sciucco

13 books69 followers
I’m not a nurse who writes but a writer who happens to be a nurse. A lover of words and books, I dreamed of becoming an author when I grew up but became a nurse to avoid poverty. I later brought my two passions together and write about the intricate lives of people struggling with health and family issues. My stories are considered “clean,” meaning free of overt sexuality, graphic violence, and offensive language.

Everything I know about publishing I went out and learned on my own by reading books and blogs, joining writers’ groups, and attending writers’ conferences. How I wish I’d had someone to take me by the hand and show me the way. This led me to share my knowledge via my blog and my Facebook and Twitter accounts. And, when we're not in a pandemic, I teach classes at three colleges.

My debut novel "Blue Hydrangeas, an Alzheimer’s love story" is a Kindle bestseller, IndieReader Approved, a 5-star Reader's Favorite, a Library Journal Self-e Selection, and a BookWorks featured book. It’s available in digital, paperback, and audiobook on Amazon. A prequel to the novel, "Christmas at Blue Hydrangeas," was released on Kindle, paperback, and audio. In 2019 it was a Solo Medalist Winner in New Apple Literary's Summer E-Book Awards in SHORT STORY.

My Young Adult novel "Swim Season" is the fast-paced drama driven story of Olympic hopeful Aerin Keane, starting senior year in her third high school and trying NOT to win. But can she hide her natural talent and competitive streak? Especially with a 50,000-dollar scholarship on the line? "Swim Season" was an Official Selection in the 2017 New Apple Book Awards: Young Adult General Fiction, and is a 5-star Readers’ Favorite and a BookWorks Featured Book of the Week. Available in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook on Amazon.

I’ve published three short stories in Kindle and audio: "Ino’s Love," the award winning "Collection," Daisy Hunter Story No. 1, and "Birthday Party," Daisy Hunter Story No. 2.

My writing and publishing career has led me to become a founding member of AlzAuthors, the global community of authors writing about the dementias. Our goal is to raise awareness of these diseases and to spotlight carefully vetted books and blogs recommended for caregivers and others looking for knowledge and support. Each week we feature a new author/blogger on our blog and I host a podcast featuring one of our authors. Visit alzauthors.com.

A native Bostonian, I live in New York’s Hudson Valley, and when not writing work as a campus nurse at a community college. I love books, the beach, and craft beer, and especially enjoy the three of them together.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 72 reviews
Profile Image for Cynthia Hamilton.
Author 13 books190 followers
July 4, 2018
There is a sense of quiet foreboding in Blue Hydrangeas, starting from the first page, where we learn of Sara’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis. But there is a whole story ahead of us and it’s easy to become involved in the lives of Jack and Sara Harmon as the saga plays back in time and into an uncertain but treacherous future.

I had this book on my Kindle for a long time before I started reading it. I knew it was a fictional work about a couple struggling to find their footing once Alzheimer’s forever alters their lives. I could tell by the reviews that it was well-loved…yet I resisted. Not because I’m squeamish, but because it is such a powerful subject, one that nearly all of us have been touched by at one time or another. I knew there would be pain. I knew that there aren’t any happy endings where Alzheimer’s is concerned.

Then one day I summoned the courage and began reading the tender, loving, and sometimes painfully real story of a love that can never be destroyed, not even by a monster of a disease. What I found on those pages was achingly believable; a loving relationship that had stood the test of time, a thriving business, lives well lived. What was bright, successful, full of love and lasting friendships starts to fray at the seems as Sara’s mind begins to fail.

But losing the life he had with Sara wasn’t an option for Jack. She is his partner in life and love, in parenthood and business. They still have many years ahead of them. But they will never be the same.

Even though I knew what was in store, I had to follow Jack and Sarah’s journey. They had become as real to me as any characters I had ever fallen in love with. To cut and run would’ve been as unthinkable as Jack sending Sara into the care of others. Blue Hydrangeas is a love story for the here and now. It is tough at times, but always inspiring and beautifully written.
Profile Image for Ruth.
965 reviews47 followers
August 29, 2016
Imagine the feeling of walking into the home that you know so well and having the love of your life not recognize you even though you have been married 50+ years. Paul faces this issue as he has to decide if it is time for him to take Sara to live at an assisted living home where his wife can obtain around the clock care.

How do you decide to give up waking next to your spouse each day? When they have good days amongst the bad, how do you know when it is time? What do you do with yourself when the other person who helped to bring life into your home is no longer in residence?

Written by a nurse who worked with many patients, this book gives you a glimpse into a life torn asunder by this disease and the complexities of making these decisions. It also shows how the entire family is affected and needs to play a part in the decisions that need to be made.

A very real tale about love and the loss that this disease brings with it long before the life finally reaches its end.
Profile Image for Story Circle Book Reviews.
636 reviews61 followers
February 23, 2015
Blue Hydrangeas is, by far, the most tender love story I've read in a very long time. While not a "happily ever after" love story, Blue Hydrangeas is sure to be one you will ponder for some time after you have finished reading it.

The subtitle is "an Alzheimer's love story." But while the book tackles the reality of life with Alzheimer's (for the person diagnosed with it as well as the friends and family members coping with it) Blue Hydrangeas is not just another book about Alzheimer's. It is a tale of a woman whose whole life has been up-ended by her disease. It is a tale of the man who loves her deeply and wants nothing more than to stay with her at their home for the rest of their days. It is a tale of close family members and friends who want to help but are often at a loss to know what to do or how to help. And, perhaps most importantly, it is a gentle reminder to confront the past, face the future and live each and every moment to its fullest.

After 50 years of marriage, Jack and Sara Harmon have shared many celebrations and crises but none as encompassing as the disease which is slowly taking away Sara's memory and personality. They have had children and lost one to an unfortunate drowning accident on the Cape. They have welcomed countless people into their successful bed and breakfast establishment and enjoyed serving their guests with comfort and hospitality. Jack has had a successful career as a pharmaceutical rep. Sara has enjoyed success as a local artist whose paintings are seen all over the Cape Cod area. Now, she doesn't remember the daughter who drowned, even when seeing pictures in her treasured photo albums. There are times when she doesn't recognize her grandson. Before her keys were taken away, there were incidents where she'd leave to drive ten minutes to the market for one item and return more than two hours later with nothing in hand. Many are the mornings when Jack awakens in the wee hours to the sounds of pots and pans clanging in the kitchen and discover Sara in the process of "making breakfast for our guests"—even though the bed and breakfast has been closed for years and there are no guests. Life is anything but what they'd hoped it would be when they planned for their later years together.

Sciucco has written a poignant tale that embraces the good times, celebrates the importance of family and reminiscing, and brings to light the deeply painful struggles a caregiver goes through, trying to be realistic yet honoring promises made to a then-healthier spouse. The author very deftly uses the techniques of reminiscing as key elements in her story: Time spent going through photo albums so that Sara can relate her memories of the persons and events. Drives down familiar roads. Daily routines that bring order into an otherwise chaotic life. And all of it done with tenderness, compassion, honesty and integrity. She has captured some of the real-life hardships for those with the disease, as well as for their caregivers.

Jack promised Sara that they would stay together forever at their lovely Cape Cod home, Blue Hydrangeas. But Jack's health issues can no longer be ignored, and after nine years of caring for Sara, he must admit that it is sometimes an overwhelming task. When the time comes for him to place Sara in a care facility, a spur-of-the-moment road trip brings the story full circle, unites the family in a plan that will honor the health and emotional needs of both Sara and Jack, and leaves the reader feeling the power of a love story well-told.

by Lee Ambrose
for Story Circle Book Reviews
reviewing books by, for, and about women
Profile Image for Phyllis Peters.
Author 1 book6 followers
February 14, 2014
Marianne Sciucco’s BLUE HYDRANGEAS is an Alzheimer’s love story that taps the reader gently on the shoulder. We turn to see Sara and Jack, a couple whose devotion to each other will break our hearts when the dreaded disease steps in.

Which it does immediately. As the story opens, Sara has just been diagnosed. Then suddenly, fast-forwarded to nine years later, we are dropped into her predicament. The couple’s dream home on the Cape—Blue Hydrangeas—functions as a bed-and-breakfast, but the cozy life they have been enjoying there is disintegrating rapidly: Sara dresses inappropriately, does not recall her own whereabouts, accuses others. And of course, there’s the dreaded falling. Jack curbs his own denial as loved ones around him begin to utter the damning phrase, “Nursing home.”

Jack’s physical ailments force him to take action. But when he finds himself at the entrance to a facility, ready to drop off his beloved wife, anger and helplessness swell. Fleeing seems the only answer.

As a recent reader, I would like to have read more about this emotional escape hatch and what happens once they slip through it. Jack and Sara’s relationship runs so deep, so tenderly symbiotic, that her outbursts and difficult situation are the perfect catalyst for Jack’s actions. Yet this section is a bit abbreviated. Despite the brevity, however, poignant moments of searching and heartbreak lead the reader, along with Sara and Jack, to the inevitable. Sara’s and others’ experienes are both realistic and moving, and family reactions are—as happens so faithfully in life—shock and utter helplessness. Having been through the experience with my own loved ones, I was shocked and helpless all over again, and reminded by this story that acceptance comes on its own terms.

BLUE HYDRANGEAS is a story of detail and devotion, about the comfort they provide when, either unintentionally or purposefully, we get lost.
Profile Image for One-Click.
700 reviews21 followers
June 13, 2015

Narration - Elinor Bell - REALLY GOOD! Really!

This is such an incredible book.
I lost my mother in April 2014 to Alzheimers. This book does an exceptional job of portraying, not only what the caregivers go through with this stupid disease, but what the diagnosee is going through as well. The confusion, the fear, the denial, the paranoia. The struggle for caregivers to try to keep the promises that they made to their loved one and the shame (maybe shame isn't the right word, but the desire to hide what's going on from everyone on the outside because you know your loved one would be horrified). The terror you see on their face when you know that they realize what's happening to them and there's nothing that can be done to stop it. The pain when that person no longer knows who you are. The relief when the disease progresses to the point where they no longer realize that they have Alzheimers - so at least you don't have to see that struggle and pain in their eyes and soul anymore.

This is the story of a elderly couple in love, that are bound and determined to stay in their home, stay together, kiss each other good night, wake up next to each other every morning, while they try to navigate this disease. We experience this disease through the eyes of Sara and her husband Jack, but also through the eyes of friends, neighbors, children and grandchildren.

This is a poignant story about the tragic disease called Alzheimers filled with love and loss and it is spot on!

Just fabulous!

That is all.

This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast.com
Profile Image for Karen.
837 reviews122 followers
February 16, 2015
**I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**

I worked for a quarter of a century as an English teacher before retraining to be a gerontologist, so I am very interested in literary representations of aging and age-related challenges. I was happy to read a novel about Alzheimer's Disease.

Sciucco tells a very sweet story about Jack and Sara, a long-time married couple who are trying to respond to Sara's worsening Alzheimer's Disease. They ran a bed-and-breakfast together, but Sara's memory problems made that challenging. In addition, Jack has trouble with his heart.

Their struggles are similar to real-life couples facing such a challenge. They have friends and relatives who are showing concerns, they are trying to maintain their independence as long as possible, they have conflicting emotions about how to balance their desire for freedom with their need for safety.

And they take a long time to recognize that Sara's memory problems are much more serious than age-related cognitive changes.

It's a sweet little book that I read in one sitting. You can feel Jack's concern for his wife, Sara, and his confusion about how to respond appropriately. It's a good book for developing empathy for people dealing with late-life challenges. It might help family members start a conversation about care options.
Profile Image for Stacy.
1,102 reviews4 followers
May 14, 2014
I won this book as a FirstRead.

It has been 9 years since Sara was diagnosed with Alzheimer's, and her husband, Jack, is determined to take care of her at home no matter what. However, after one accident too many in their home, Sara's doctor and son decide it is time for Sara to be moved to an assisted living facility. Jack struggles with the idea of them not being able to live out the rest of Sara's days in Blue Hydrangea's, their family home that has always been Sara's dream.

You can feel the emotion pouring out of the pages of this story. The author's experiences working with Alzheimer's patients has helped create a very realistic portrait of what families dealing with Alzheimer's go through.
Profile Image for L. Fabry.
Author 2 books11 followers
February 26, 2014
I'm only giving it 4 out of 5 because I have no experience on the subject matter to draw upon.

Jack and Sara are about to go through the toughest challenge of their lives when Sara is diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Fast forward nine years later, and we find life between them has drastically changed. As Jack struggles to hang onto his old life for just a little longer, the consequences of doing so become more dangerous for the whole family. But no matter how deep she slips, Jack is always able to find a sliver of the woman he loves in Sara.

I never thought I would say this about a book, but I was simultaneously depressed and inspired.
Profile Image for Teresa Kander.
Author 1 book176 followers
September 29, 2014
**I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.**

This is a beautiful, heart-breaking love story. It's the story of an older couple and their journey dealing with the wife's Alzeheimer's over a decade. There is humor, sadness, and so much love. It's so well written that you lose yourself in it and forget that it is a work of fiction.

I would highly recommend this for anyone of my age group who has begun to have trouble relating to the romantic stories of twenty-somethings. This is what love looks like for those of us of "a certain age."
Profile Image for Kati.
28 reviews
January 19, 2014
***I received an e-copy of this book for free in exchange for my unbiased opinion of this book.

The story of Jack and Sara is a heart-breaking one as Sara goes through the journey of Alzheimer's disease. The devoted couple are put to the test as the disease worsens and Jack has a harder time taking care of Sara on his own. This is a gripping story and it flows well -- not a hard read at all. This book is excellent.
March 23, 2018
Beautifully told story of love,loyalty and self sacrifice.

this story is a real heart breaker. a man's love for his wife and determination to care for her, even to his detriment is inspiring to say the least. It brings home the sad reality of caring for an Alzheimer patient and the difficult decision to let go. a must read for anyone who has a close friend or family member with this terrible disease.
Profile Image for Cathy.
37 reviews
January 25, 2014
I received this book for free in exchange for my unbiased review.

Jack and Sara's story evolves amid the beautiful backdrop of Cape Cod. Theirs is a touching love story that faces the challenges and heartbreak of Alzheimer's disease. The characters are well-developed and the story portrays the progression of Alzheimer's in a realistic light. A very enjoyable book that I would recommend.
Profile Image for Jean Lee.
Author 4 books31 followers
February 16, 2014
While reading Marianne Sciucco's fictional story, I was taken back to the years of care-taking and decision making for my own parents who both died of Alzheimer's disease. Thank you, Marianne, for writing a beautiful love story portraying the honest devastation of the disease, yet reinforcing the desire to preserve the dignity of those afflicted.
Profile Image for Suzanne Gunter McClendon.
Author 1 book5 followers
April 24, 2014
For those that have no experience with a loved one with Alzheimer's, this is an eye-opener.

For those that have walked this road before, it opens the floodgates of heartache and the memory of losing someone while they're still here.

It is a touching story of love and devotion, living the vows of "in sickness and in health, till death do us part".
Profile Image for Skywalker Payne.
Author 3 books
September 9, 2013
This is a touching story of Jack and Sara whose marriage of over 50 years holds them together through the pains of Sara’s Alzheimers disease. Sciucco creates characters who are compelling and tells a story that keeps you on the edge of your seat.
Profile Image for Debbie Hendrix.
36 reviews1 follower
October 12, 2013
Sweet touching love story!! Jack and Sara do not want to live apart but Alzheimer's is giving them no choice. Love the fight Jack puts up to keep his promise to Sara. Live every day to the fullest because you never know when it can end!
Profile Image for Leigh Ann.
14 reviews1 follower
July 14, 2014
Spectacular Book

this was eye opening to what a person goes throught who has Alzheimer's disease along with their families and friends. The story was heart felt and wonderfully written.
Profile Image for Donna Riegel.
199 reviews3 followers
September 3, 2014
What a beautiful story about Alzheimers and commitment to your
partner. It is a shame that all Alzheimers stories don't end happy
like this one did. My father has this disease and it is not very pretty!!!!
Profile Image for Myeve123.
41 reviews4 followers
December 31, 2013
A touching love story. My father has Alzheimer and my heart goes to my mother who has to care for him. This book reminds me how little time we have left.
Profile Image for NancyL Luckey.
461 reviews14 followers
April 16, 2014
Got this ebook from Amazon's Daily Deals. Read it in one sitting. So sad what Alzheimer's does to families.
1 review1 follower
November 7, 2019
Everyone knows what Alzheimer’s disease is, but do they truly know the major impact it has on people’s lives? Blue Hydrangeas by Marianne Sciucco was published in 2013 by Bunky Press and has 224 pages. It is a romance novel about an elderly couple, Jack and Sara Harmon, and their battle with Sara’s Alzheimer's Disease. They have been together for over 50 years and used to run an inn together in their hometown of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The name of the inn is Blue Hydrangeas, the same as the title of the book, because the Blue Hydrangea flower has a great impact on Sara’s life. She has been a painter her whole life and Blue Hydrangeas are her favorite subject matter to paint. She also planted and took care of the garden and landscape around the inn, and the Blue Hydrangea was her favorite flower to plant. This led to the Blue Hydrangea becoming the icon of their inn that ran for many years.
Only a short period of time after Sara was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, Jack had to permanently close down the inn. Sara became so forgetful that she lost bills, forgot to buy certain groceries, and overbooked the inn. Jack could not possibly run it by himself. His family members recommended for him to get help, but he refused to let go of his wife and continued to take care of her in their house. As Sara’s disease progresses throughout the story, it gets harder for Jack to take care of Sara. Jack had two heart attacks in the past and continues to deal with heart problems throughout the story. Sara’s increased forgetfulness requires around-the-clock care. It gets to the point where it is not physically healthy for Jack and Sara to be on their own.
Jack hires help around the house but everyday is still a constant battle with Sara’s condition. Jack and Sara’s doctor, Dr. Keith Fallon, and their son, David, push Jack to put Sara in an Assisted Living Facility, but it is very hard for him to let go. He finally caves in to put her in a facility for a week, but when they get there, he cannot handle the situation and drives away. He takes Sara out of town for the day to enjoy time together and to remember their past. While they are away, Sara gets lost in town while Jack is getting food and the anxiety of losing her causes Jack to have a third attack. He has to get transferred to Boston to get bypass surgery. It is then that his son, David, finally convinces him that he and Sara should move to an Assisted Living Facility together. He will no longer have to worry about dealing with their house or taking care of Sara, and they can live the rest of their lives happily together.
The author, Marianne Sciucco, works as a school nurse at a community college in New York’s Mid-Hudson Valley, but she is also a writer. She studied writing as an English major at the University of Massachusetts and later became a nurse. In 2002, she started putting her two passions together by writing about families’ struggles with health issues. The story of Jack and Sara Harmon started off as a short story, but with the support of Sciucco’s family and co-workers, it became an amazing novel.
I could relate to Derrick, Jack and Sara’s teenage grandson in the story. He feels terrible for his grandparents and is constantly worried about their health. I care greatly for my loved ones and am always concerned for their well-being. If I were Derrick, I would always be concerned about Jack and Sara’s conditions as well.
The only part of the book I would change is the situation with Jack and Sara’s daughter, Lisa. She died in a drowning accident around 20 years before the story took place. The book is already so sad considering Sara’s condition, adding in the death of their daughter at such a young age makes the book more depressing than it needs to be. There is an entire chapter that explains Lisa’s drowning, which I believe is far too much information explained about her death. The book is about Sara’s Alzheimer’s, not the family’s past.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that likes a romantic tear-jerker. It is a very sweet love story and interesting to read. Any person that enjoys romance, science, and novels in general would definitely enjoy this book. It was one of my favorite books I ever read because it combined science, love, drama, and family.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
1 review1 follower
November 13, 2019
Alzheimer's disease is a neurological disorder where the death of brain cells causes memory loss. This disease is so common that five million people have been diagnosed with it. This short novel titled Blue Hydrangeas is just one story of the pressures Alzheimer’s can put on people’s daily lives. The author Marianne Sciucco had her book published by Bunky Press in 2013 and it has 243 pages full of happy moments along with sad ones.
Blue Hydrangeas is a love story about an elderly couple that is happily married. Jack and Sara Harmon have been married for over 50 years, and they live together in a big house shared with guest because they decided to run a bed and breakfast together in Cape Cod, Massachusetts named Blue Hydrangeas. They named the inn this because Sara loves the flower Blue Hydrangea, and she also has a garden and loves to take care of it. Sara did all the housework and cooking while Jack took care of booking and bills. Everything was going wonderfully for the couple until Sara was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Jack tried to keep the inn running as long as he could, but eventually he had to close it down because Sara was overbooking rooms and losing bills. He simply could not keep up by himself. He decided to focus on Sara and take care of her. He had promised her he would never put her in a nursing home no matter what, but as her disease progressed he couldn’t give her the care she needed due to his own health problems. Jack previously had two heart attacks and still has heart problems, so his family and doctor tries to advise him to put Sara in a nursing home but he won’t. After a hospital visit, Jack finally decides to place Sara in a nursing home, but as he pulls up to bring her, he can’t do it. He drives himself and Sara away from the nursing home and heads out of town. While away from home Sara gets lost and causes Jack to have another heart attack due to the stress of not knowing where she is. Jack then realizes that he cannot take care of Sara alone and needs help himself. He decides they should live in the nursing home together. This is the best decision for their health and happiness.
Marianne Sciucco, the author, always wanted to be a writer. She went to the University of Massachusetts at Boston to major in English. While she was in Boston, she worked as a newspaper writer. She later became a nurse. She worked as a school nurse in a community college in New York.In 2002 she put both of her careers together and wrote about people struggling with their health problems.
I can relate to Jack and Sara’s family. They are so concerned with their health and well being. I am concerned with my family, so I feel like I would react to their situation the same way. I can’t completely relate to Sara, but I know how frustrating it can be to forget things; I can’t imagine what she or Jack are going through.
My favorite part of the book was the end. Jack finally gave in, and made the best decision for them. It was a happy ending to the stressful situations Alzheimer’s forced upon them. I don’t think I would change anything about the book.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning about Alzheimer's disease. I would also recommend it to someone that loves romantic stories. It is a good book for people interested in medicine and romance.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
1 review1 follower
November 7, 2019
After all those love stories, what happens when a couple reaches old age? Blue Hydrangeas is a 257 page book, written by Marianne Scicucco, and published by Bunky Press, on April 22, 2013.The author is a “a writer who happens to be a nurse” and a woman of many talents. Marianne Scicucco has seen first hand the struggles of “health and family issues” which reflects in her writing. In the fiction book, the love of Jack and Sara is sweetly unreal as it keeps them together through thick and thin. Sara suffers from Alzheimer’s disease while Jack, Sara’s husband, struggles to care for her. The characters in this story are relatable in the sense that we all try to do what is best for our loved ones. The more Sara forgets, the more Jack carries the burden of remembering including the painful memory of their deceased daughter. As Jack is faced with the decision of sending Sara to a nursing home, a reader can feel his hurt and conflict. The idea of waking in the morning without Sara is unbearable for Jack. Although none of my relatives or friends have suffered through Alzheimer’s disease, Sara turning into a husk of herself causes empathy. The book has the point of view of those surrounding Sara. In doing this, the author gives insight on how Alzheimer's disease affects the people around Sara, giving the reader a broader view.Throughout this book, I could not help but think Sara is lucky to be surrounded by supportive people. I've realized ,with the help of this book, that dealing with Alzheimer's can be exhausting. Jack’s own health deteriorated while caring for Sara. Jack caring for Sara gave off a palpable warmth which ,in my opinion, was the best part of Blue Hydrangeas. Blue Hydrangeas is a very short and bittersweet book. It has you feeling anxiety, relief, joy and love for the characters. I would recommend it to any that like emotional quick reads.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for AJ Qureshi.
22 reviews
October 20, 2021
A story of unconditional love.

This book is recommended by someone from Twitter since I am a sucker for romance and love stories. The title caught my attention, let alone made me curious. Reason I rated 3 stars is not because ‘I didn’t like it’ or whatever.

I love the example the author have written an example of unconditional love. Two theme I figured is time and love. Jack and Sara are the couple, married & older generation whereas their son, David, who is married with Anne and have grown kids.

Now, I have a hard time writing because one thing I have rated 3 stars as a reader. The story kinda drags me down a little within the past and present. I mean, if the story is important, mainly to the couple. But I only cared about what’s happening now.

Overall, the story is good and the characters are great! Not going to lie. It did made me laugh and cry (a little). I don’t blame Jack, because I find him such a good old man whose commitment is so strong. Even through hard times, where his wife begins to face Alzheimer. Which is a very tough subject. And it’s hard work. Marriage is hard work.

If you or your loved ones are facing Alzheimer (a terrible disease) you’re not alone.

Give this a read if you are into clean romance.
Profile Image for Linda Brendle.
Author 5 books36 followers
December 15, 2017
Blue Hydrangeas is a beautifully written novel that tells the story of a man’s all-consuming love for his wife who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. It is also the story of how this terrible disease affects the entire network of family and friends that surrounds the affected person. Marianne Sciucco does not mention a personal connection with Alzheimer’s, but I’m sure she has dealt with it in her career as a nurse. She definitely writes about the dementia experience with the insight and sensitivity of one who has watched a loved one disappear slowly, one memory at a time.

The story is about more than the disease, though. Sciucco paints lovely word pictures of the Blue Hydrangeas Bed & Breakfast and of the love between Jack and Sara that is stronger than the trials they must face together. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and am looking forward to the prequel that will be coming soon.
Profile Image for Anne Rightler.
1,678 reviews12 followers
December 20, 2019
Blue Hydrangeas by Marianne Sciucco is a wonderful story of enduring love. Sara and Jack have been married for half a century and now Alzheimer's is about to significantly change their lives. The author insightfully and accurately portrays the emotions and reactions of the individual and the family in regards to this devasting journey they are navigating. I was quickly drawn into the story and pretty much listened to it in one 'sitting'--I was doing housework! Such a hopeless situation and yet Sciucco brings a sense of warmth and promise that things will be okay despite the heartbreak. Elinor Bell narrates Sara and Jack's story and does a great job telling their love story, which made for an enjoyable listening experience. I was given a complimentary copy of the audiobook and was not required to write a review. The opinions are my own.
15 reviews
January 12, 2018
Alzheimer's! Such a sad disease.

This story of two people very much in love in their older years and then the person he loves becomes someone else. This book would be beneficial to someone who is seeing what Alzheimer is doing to some one they love dearly. It shows how difficult it becomes to care for that person no matter how much you love them. Hopefully, it will help others to make the decision when it is time to let their love one be under the care of others. It is a beautiful love store but a sad one. Jack was blessed because Sara always remember who he was. That is not always the case.. A wonderful read.
Profile Image for Dawn Byers.
490 reviews8 followers
February 22, 2023
I won this book in an authors contest-
What an interesting, heartbreaking, touching story of a wife, mother who develops dementia. The husband chooses to care for her- the tough road that is. The wife’s frustration as she forgets things or wanders off, or her beautiful paintings become mess. The love they feel- never wanting to be apart and yet the toll it takes on the husband. The sons frustration and worries for his parents. Neither wants her in a home and yet can her husband continue to care for her? And finally the joy found when a decision is made that they each can live with.
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Author 1 book8 followers
August 11, 2019
Sweet story about an aging couple whose golden years are different than what they expected and how their family’s lives are impacted. More than a romance... we are taken on a journey of emotional decision making. The writing from the perspective of Sara who has Alzheimer’s enhances the story allowing the reader a peek inside of what living with this disease could feel like. Ultimately this reminds me that home is really not about the place but the people we share this life with.
187 reviews
June 25, 2020
Very sweet, heart-tugging story, which Boomers and Gen X can really relate to, either as caregivers for our own parents, or as afflicted ourselves. Really makes you stop and consider how you would react when faced with that situation. Jack (in the story) really knows the meaning of the word commitment when it comes to marriage. I really loved him! And Sara's story will break your heart---as the ugliness of Alzheimer's overtakes her and she loses more and more of her memory. Since Alzheimer's will affect the vast majority of us in one way or another, this book is really a must-read. It offers understanding and encouragement.
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