And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer: A Novella (Thorndike Press Large Print Core) Hardcover – Large Print, March 1, 2017
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- Publisher : Thorndike Press Large Print; Large type / Large print edition (March 1, 2017)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 128 pages
- ISBN-10 : 141049683X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1410496836
- Item Weight : 8 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.6 x 0.6 x 8.6 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #673,971 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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This spare, powerful little story is about a grandfather who is "disappearing" from his having dementia and we learn about the bond between him and his young grandson, Noah. He calls the young boy NoahNoah in the book.
Because the story is often told from the point of view of the grandfather as he sees his world reduced and as he "talks" to his deceased beloved wife, the reader is left feeling what it must be like to have this horrible condition. It's really quite brilliant as is disconcerting for the reader. As the author himself says in the beginning introduction:
"One of my idols once said, 'The worst part about growing old is that I don't get any ideas anymore.' Those words have never quite left me since I first heard them, because this would be my greatest fear: imagination giving up before the body does. I guess I'm not alone in this. Humans are a strange breed in the way our fear of getting old seems to be even greater than our fear of dying."
This is such a little gem of a book. At times dreamlike, at times more straightforward, the story so beautifully shows us the bonding between Noah and his grandfather and the kindness and love between them; the shared wisdom that carries Noah forward in time.
As to anyone who has had a relative or loved one with dementia or Alzheimer's- for me it was my father - this book so eloquently describes that long goodbye and how poignant and perfect the title.
So highly recommended. I am rapidly becoming a big fan of Fredrik Backman.
It will make you cry. However, what insight into the world of the elderly with dementia or Alzheimer's.... This is beautifully done.
In a letter to the reader at the beginning of the story, Backman states,’This is a story about memories and letting go. It’s a love letter and a slow farewell between a man and his grandson, and between a dad and his boy.’ He also explains that writing this story was a type of therapy for him as he too has experience with a loved one with memory loss.
As I began to read this story, I soon realized that this is both a similar and different type of story to Backman’s other works. It is similar in that it portrays an older person and their relationships. It is different in that the story line is not as straight forward as other Backman’s works.
The story is told through the perspective of the grandfather who is sinking deeper into dementia. It switches between the grandfather speaking with his grandson, Noah, his son,Ted, and his wife who had previously passed away. His thought process is scattered but at the same time deeply symbolic. He likens his brain to a park square that gets smaller and smaller each day and the ‘way home’ is his process to remember details of his life each morning. He then explains that the objects in the park symbolize different memories.
Although this was less of an easy read then I found Backman’s other books, to be, this book is just as amazing. It gives an honest look at how hard and complicated it must be to lose someone you love before they actually die. Backman does a wonderful job of panting a picture of someones mind as they are mentally slipping away.
Another amazing read from Backman and a quick read as it’s only ninety-six pages. Backman has an amazing gift for writing characters that I makes me feel that I know them personally. This is one of those books that is a must read for all.
AND EVERY MORNING THE WAY HOME GETS LONGER AND LONGER is a very short work by Frederik Backman and of the appropriate length to make its point. The protagonist, if he can be called such, is Grandpa, who’s enduring advancing dementia – perhaps Alzheimer’s ‒ as he approaches death. Most of the story is from the perspective of his deteriorating mental state as he grapples with losing his most precious memories as well as continuing his relationship with his beloved grandson Noah and his son Ted, both of whom must learn how to support him in his final decline and eventually say good-bye.
The saddest and most bittersweet aspect of the story is Grandpa’s memories of the love of his life, Grandma, who has predeceased her husband but still speaks with him in his mind’s eye.
I read it in 40 minutes. (I know the duration exactly because I was timing myself on an elliptical while reading.) Is AND EVERY MORNING THE WAY HOME GETS LONGER AND LONGER a masterpiece of writing? Well, no. But it is a perceptive, sensitive, and empathetic treatment of the condition many will ultimately arrive at if long-lived enough. And for the older reader approaching the event horizon, the more intimately relevant it may be.
Top reviews from other countries
Perfection. I did tear up. A short read which won't take long to get through so perfect for those readers with busy lives or in a book slump. Has some beautiful illustrations throughout to accompany the story. Its a must read from me. Highly recommend. A well deserved five stars. Pop it onto your pile you won't regret it.