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Recommended Reading
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The Alzheimer's Association offers a lending library in each of its regional offices statewide, and many books are available for purchase at our Denver office. Additional resources are available through the National Library Service.

Featured book



Jan's Story
by Barry Petersen, ©2010
"This is a love story, a travelogue, a television history...and a stunning, achingly personal journey.  Dashing and fearless, nothing could stop Barry, the veteran war correspondent, until tragedy knocked him cold. This is the story of life, love, loss and renewal."  —Brian Williams, Anchor and Managing Editor, NBC Nightly News

To learn more about or to purchase this book, click here. Ten percent  of the book's royalties are earmarked for the Alzheimer's Association.


Description of available titles (alphabetical by title)

A Dignified Life: The Best Friends Approach to Alzheimer's Care, A Guide for Family Caregivers
by Virginia Bell, MSW & David Troxel, MPH ©2002
The keystone book describing the Best FriendsTM approach to Alzheimer’s care -- using caring, heartfelt responses to daily situations, bringing dignity to the lives of people with dementia and their caregivers.

A Personal Guide to Living with Progressive Memory Loss
by Sandy Burgener & Prudence Twigg ©2007
Useful advice for people with early stage dementia and insight for family and friends.  Real-life examples of people in the same situations show both positive and negative ways of dealing with possible problems and challenges.

A Return Journey: Hope and Strength in the Aftermath of Alzheimer’s
by Sue Petrovski ©2003
Local author and chapter volunteer Sue Petrovski shares the collective wisdom of a support group of caregivers in book form, with emphasis on the caregiver who will surely find grace and wisdom on the journey through dementia.

Ageless Outings – Summary of Ageless Outings – Destination Planning Chart & Appendix of Destinations Listed Alphabetically
by Maureen Wells ©2002.
While the original go-to book for outings in the Denver area enjoyed by the general public and by persons with dementia, Ageless Outings, is out of print, this summary gives you lists of enjoyable destinations - great for a short visit or a day trip.

Alzheimer's: A Caregiver's Guide and Sourcebook
by Howard Gruetzner ©2001
This critically acclaimed guide leads you through the realities of caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s.  A full overview of the symptoms, stages, treatments and support services, offering caregivers helpful, hopeful advice for getting through difficult challenges and coping with stress, grief and depression to help them create loving and more comfortable relationships.

Alzheimer's Early Stages: First Steps for Family, Friends and Caregivers
by Daniel Kuhn, MSW ©2003
Three parts devoted to knowledge and support needed by caregivers of people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease: What is Alzheimer’s disease?, Giving Care (planning now for long-term needs), Caring for Yourself.

Alzheimer's Disease: Help and Hope, Ten Simple Solutions for Caregivers
by Jo Huey ©2001
Ten chapters, each devoted to one of Jo Huey’s well-known Ten Communication Absolutes.  Easy practical suggestions for improving communication,  preventing behaviors due to frustration or fear and fostering a hopeful attitude.

Alzheimer's from the Inside Out
by Richard Taylor, PhD  ©2007
Diagnosed at age 58, psychologist Richard Taylor tells the story of his first five years with Alzheimer’s disease in vivid, gripping, and sometimes humorous ways, revealing an existence most of us can only imagine.  With sometimes searing honesty, he shares thoughts, fears, frustrations, and questions giving readers the rare ability to travel on his unpredictable journey.  

Between Two Worlds: Special Moments of Alzheimer’s & Dementia
by Ellen P. Young ©1999
This book looks at a family’s experience with Alzheimer’s disease.  It is about love and pain and about taking a peek behind that darkest cloud and finding that gentle humor is often our greatest ally.

Changes in Decision-Making Capacity in Older Adults: Assessment and Intervention
by Sara Honn Qualls, PhD and Michael A Smyer  ©2007
International contributors familiarize you with the legal and social contexts for decision making in potentially impaired individuals, giving a unique framework of the legal, social, and psychological approaches to assessing the ability of older adults to make decisions.

Creating Environments of Support: A Handbook for Dementia Responsive Design
by Sarah Campernel & William Brummett, William Brummett Architects  ©2010
This guide is intended to help shape a care setting for someone living with Alzheimer’s disease. Architectural and design elements can create a therapeutic environment that actually enhances the life and care of someone with dementia.

Creating Moments of Joy for the Person with Alzheimer's or Dementia: A Journal for Caregivers (4th ed)
edited by Jolene Brackey ©2007
No matter what the environment or situation is, this book will be a positive tool on a daily basis.   The concise format is easy to absorb and apply, offering practical tips and small things to try.

Cuando el Día Tiene 36 Horas: Una Guía para cuidar a enfermos con pérdida de memoria, demencia senil y Alzheimer’s
por Nancy L. Mace, Peter V. Rabins, MD, PhD  ©2006
El libro o la “Biblia” de cuidados de pacientes con demencia que todos deben tener en su biblioteca.  **tambien disponible en inglés: The 36-Hour Day

Doing Things: A Guide to Programming Activities for Persons with Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders
by Jitka Zgola ©1987
An invaluable guide to offering enjoyable activities for people with dementia in formal program settings or at home.  Step-by-step instructions for selecting and presenting appropriate activities and outings to enhance quality of life for people with dementia presented by an occupational therapist.

Keeping Busy: A Handbook of Activities for Persons with Dementia
by James Dowling ©1995
Describes a variety of activities designed to bring meaning and enjoyment to the lives of people with dementia.  Activities are organized in general categories such as music, exercise, horticulture, pets, humor and social events.

La comodidad del hogar: Guía ilustrada y detallada de cuidado y asistencia
por Maria M. Meyer y Paula Derr, RN  ©2002
Esta beneficiosa guía puede eliminar el miedo de cuidar a alguien en casa, prevenir lesiones e infecciones en las personas con Alzheimer’s, asegurar buena nutrición, manejar problemas rutinarios y cómo comunicarse con cuidadores profesionales (hay una sección especial de cuidados de personas con demencia).   **tambien disponible en inglés: The Comfort of Home

Learning to Speak Alzheimer’s: A Groundbreaking Approach for Everyone Dealing with the Disease
by Joanne Keonig Coste  ©2003
Hundreds of daily tips for relatives and friends, offering a practical approach to enhance the emotional well-being of all involved by relating to people calmly in their own reality.

Living in the Labyrinth: A Personal Journey Through the Maze of Alzheimer’s
by Diana Friel McGowin ©1994
Age 45 when she first experienced memory lapses and disorientation, Diana Friel McGowin relates her story with the early stage of the disease, its impact on her relationships and the need for services that led her to become an advocate and launch one of the first support groups for people with dementia.

Los Mejores Amigos en el Cuidado de Alzheimer
por Virginia Bell, MSW, and David Troxel, MPH  ©2003
El cuidado de Alzheimer requiere los mismos ingredients que se requiren en cualquier Buena Amistad: respeto mutual, afecto, comprensión y apoyo. Esto significa compartir tiempo, sentimientos, recuerdos y experiencias nuevas.  No es difícil. **tambien disponible en inglés: The Best Friends Approach to Alzheimer's Care

Measure of the Heart: A Father’s Alzheimer’s, A Daughter’s Return
by Mary Ellen Geist
Mary Ellen Geist refers to herself as the “Designated Daughter,” the one who returned home to support her mother in loving and caring for Mary Ellen’s father Woody with Alzheimer’s disease. With the objectivity of a reporter’s eye and the compassion of a caregiver’s heart, Mary Ellen deftly weaves personal experience and diligent research in sharing her family’s story of life with dementia.
Mom, Are You There? Finding a Path to Peace Through Alzheimer’s
by Kathleen A. Negri
Insights and lessons that can aid any caregiver in embracing the person with dementia in positive, healthy ways and in developing self-understanding.

Nursing Homes:  Getting Good Care There
by Sarah Greene Burger, Virginia Fraser, Sara Hunt, Barbara Frank  ©2001
A Consumer Action Manual prepared by the National Citizens’ Coalition for Nursing Home Reform with information, resources, even an outline for providing valuable information to staff about your loved one.

Still Alice
by Lisa Genova ©2008
Still Alice is a fictional story about the descent of a 50-year-old university professor diagnosed with younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease. The Association assisted author Lisa Genova with her research, which included interviews with several members of past Early Stage Advisory Groups. The Association is also featured prominently in the book's plot. In addition, the Association worked with Genova to create the Still Alice discussion guide, specifically for people living with Alzheimer's. The guide, the first of its kind, is intended to help people with the disease use Alice's story to connect with their experience and explain it to others.

The 36-Hour Day:  A Family Guide to Caring for People with Alzheimer Disease, Other Dementias, and Memory Loss in Later Life (4th edition)
by Nancy L. Mace, Peter V. Rabins, MD, PhD  ©2006
The “must-have” resource or “bible” of dementia care.  **also available in Spanish: Cuando el Día Tiene 36 Horas

The Alzheimer’s Workbook: Charting a Course Through Uncertain Territory
by Donna M. McEncroe ©2008
Preparation decreases stress and anxiety.  Written by a former primary caregiver from Colorado, this workbook guides caregivers and their loved ones with dementia through four sections.  “Yours Truly” offers a template for writing a life story, a rewarding activity now and useful later as care increases.  “Charting Routines” provides charts & suggestions related to independence in activities of daily living.  “Pathways to Communication” gives personal vignettes and suggestions for enhancing verbal and nonverbal communication.  “Common Ground” shares practical and heartfelt experiences of local primary caregivers.

The Best Friends Approach to Alzheimer's Care
by Virginia Bell, MSW, and David Troxel, MPH  ©2003
Effective dementia care utilizes the same qualities as a good friendship: mutual respect, affection, understanding and support .  Use them when sharing time, feelings, memories and new experiences with someone with dementia. This approach gives you new ways to solve problems, encourage positive behavior and improve communication.  *also available in Spanish: Los Mejores Amigos en el Cuidado de Alzheimer

The Best Friends Book of Alzheimer's Activities, Volume One
by Virginia Bell, MSW, David Troxel, MPH, Robin Hamon, MSW, and Tonya Cox, MSW
Bring out the best in each person with these versatile, easy-to-implement activities. A best friend knows your habits, preferences, and joys. These qualities help you transform the activities at your residential care facility, adult day center, assisted living facility, or home care setting.

The Best Friends Book of Alzheimer's Activities, Volume Two
By Virginia Bell, MSW, David Troxel, MPH, Robin Hamon, MSW, and Tonya Cox, MSW  ©2008
Expand and enrich your Best Friends™ activity programming with 149 all-new activities for individuals with dementia, including a new focus on diversity and multiculturalism. Also featured are topics of interest to Baby Boomers, such as the Internet, advocacy, and community service.

The Best Friends Staff: Building a Culture of Care in Alzheimer's Programs
by Virginia Bell, MSW, David Troxel, MPH, Robin Hamon, MSW, and Tonya Cox, MSW  ©2001
The Best FriendsTM approach to Alzheimer’s care is changing the lives of people around the world. It improves the quality of life for clients and also for staff.  This inspiring book, filled with case studies, adopts a training approach geared to help your staff achieve better outcomes and more rewarding experiences—and help you retain an effective, satisfied team.

The Memory Cure: How to Protect Your Brain against Memory Loss and Alzheimer’s Disease
by Majid Fotuhi, MD, PhD  ©200
Current science and its implications for improving mental agility and preventing memory loss.

The Validation Breakthrough: Simple Techniques for Communicating with People with Alzheimer's-Type Dementia, Second Edition
by Naomi Feil, MSW   ©2002
Using simple but proven communication techniques, caregivers learn how to create or re-create meaningful relationships with confused older adults for improved quality of life.

Through the Wilderness of Alzheimer’s: A Guide in Two Voices
by Robert and Anne Simpson  ©1999
A loving couple’s firsthand story, told from each of their perspectives, about their journey with Robert’s Alzheimer’s disease.

Understanding Difficult Behaviors: Some Practical Suggestions for coping with Alzheimer’s Disease & Related Illnesses
by Anne Robinson, MA, Beth Spencer, MSW, Laura White, MSW  ©1989
Useful suggestions for understanding the possible reasons behind challenging behaviors, such as anger, agitation, paranoia, delusions, incontinence, wandering, screaming, repetitive actions or problems with daily tasks such as sleeping, eating, dressing, bathing, or “wanting to go home”.   The coping strategies apply to any setting.

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Alzheimer's Association

Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's
Formed in 1980, the Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research.