Today, Jennifer shares two book recommendations from local neuroscientist turned author Lisa Genova:
At first "back-of-the-book-jacket" glance, the topics of local author Lisa Genova's first two novels may seem on the heavy side for beachside reading, but trust me, you won't be able to put them down. Lisa -- who happens to have a Ph.D. in neuroscience from Harvard -- does an amazing job of literally getting inside the heads of her characters to tell their compelling stories.
Her first novel, Still Alice, is a beautiful and heartwarming (yes, heartwarming) portrayal of Alice, a Harvard professor in her early 50's who is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease. As an active volunteer with the MA/NH chapter of the Alzheimer's Association, I can tell you that this book goes a long way in educating people on this disease. And this novel is so unique in that it's from the perspective of Alice. You come to learn and understand what it's like inside her world. But even if you've never had personal experience with this often misunderstood disease, it's a great read and a wonderful story about hope, acceptance, and how we choose to live our lives.
Lisa's second book, Left Neglected, tells the story of Sarah, a high-powered exec and mother of three on the fast track to burning out. One day her life is changed forever when she suffers a devastating head injury in a car accident, leaving her with a unique and bizarre neurological condition called "left neglect." With the left side of her world essentially erased, we share in Sarah's recovery as she struggles to figure out her new world, while she begins to understand what she may have been missing from her old.
I really enjoyed these books and am looking forward to Genova's third novel, Love Anthony, which is scheduled to come out in 2013. Happy reading!