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This review is from Admiral Nurse, Irene Walker, writing for Dementia UK

We have a Big Society, an army of unpaid volunteer family carers, often unsupported, and forced to make tough decisions due to the inflexibility of our care system.

This book tells us the highly personal story of how dementia not only affected Renza, but her son Michael. Her journey is fairly typical in the fact that dementia eventually robbed her of independence. It could not however, rob her of the strong will and tenacity that enabled her to be heard. Within the text I found funny, heart-warming moments, especially the visit to the Italian embassy! But it was the unremitting struggle of Michael’s day to day experiences, trying to find solutions, as mums deterioration continued that resonated with me. As a reader I felt the exhaustion and wonder why more carers do not give up the fight to care sooner.

An estimated one million people, individuals like Renza will be diagnosed with dementia by 2025. A further one million carers will be thrust into this role. Should they really be so alone?

Irene Walker
Admiral Nurse
August 2011 

Alfred Molina | Biography, Photos, Movies, TV, Credits | 5

Written by Alfred Molina, film actor and nephew 

.. I was deeply touched and moved by your honest and loving account of [Aunt] Renza's illness and decline. It is a testament to her, clearly, and to you. The various mentions of my mother were delightful to read and the friendship between Giovanna and Renza was described with such touching detail that I found myself travelling down memory lane.... But the heart of the book is you and your mum, and you write with such tenderness and humour.
    Thank you for sharing your story .... I wish you well with the book, and like you, I hope it reaches as wide an audience as possible.

Buy the Book « Keeping Mum-4

Review by Marianne Talbot, Director of Studies in Philosophy at Oxford University’s Department for Continuing Education and author of, Keeping Mum: CARING FOR SOMEONE WITH DEMENTIA’.

I found [your] book … echoes many of my experiences with my own Mum. I think you cared for your Mum wonderfully….

There were many parts of your book I found unbearably moving. And I found as I got closer to the death of your Mum, my reading slowed right down, because I didn’t want to get to it. I also laughed though, not least at your Mum’s bouts of ill temper and anarchy! As you set off on your trip to Italy my heart was in my mouth!

… I think we were both relatively lucky in having mothers who were (reasonably) easy to look after. Our true luck, though, lies in the overwhelming love that both of us obviously felt for our mothers: worth more than anything else and something we’ll have for the rest of our lives even if our mothers have gone.

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You can read more about Marianne Talbot's book  Keeping Mum: CARING FOR SOMEONE WITH DEMENTIA’  by clicking on the graphic opposite.

Age Concern & Help the Aged are now Age UK | Elderly Benefits & Care Advice-1 2

Written by Libby Archer, Research Manager, Age UK

This new book by Michael Fassio is about caring for someone with dementia. With tremendous energy and commitment, Michael looked after his mother, Renza, who suffered from vascular dementia, at home from the onset of the condition until the end of her life. The book describes their experiences honestly and realistically, and, while not a ‘how to’ manual, contains invaluable insights into the ways in which Michael maintained Renza’s dignity and quality of life to the end.

Jo Brand - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia-2

From Jo Brand,  British comedienne, writer and actress

I liked the book's accessibility in writing style and descriptiveness -  it reads like a long letter of memories which I found appealing and was touched by how bitter sweet life for the author was with his mother. The book deserves to be read with the care and affection that it was written with.

 A moving account of dementia by a son who cared for his mother in her final years. Renza Fassio was an Italian who moved to Britain in the 1950s and lived here until her death. This is her life story. Her son shares his insights and discusses the impact on his own life.

Crossroads Care-1

" A very personal insight into caring for someone with dementia is offered by Michael Fassio in his self-published book.... Many readers will empathise strongly with this honest account, and Michael is dividing at least 10% of the proceeds between Crossroads Care and three other charities."

© Michael Fassio 2011