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Dr. Lisa Genova is the author of The New York Times best-selling novels Love Anthony, Still Alice and Left Neglected. Genova’s debut is an undeniably poignant story about a lesser known form of Alzheimer’s Disease—the early-onset form that affects people in their 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s. Powerful and compelling, the book has been hailed as “moving and haunting,” “a work of pure genius,” “insightful, tragic, inspirational” and “heartbreakingly real.”
As both a trained neuroscientist and a woman who watched her grandmother suffer through Alzheimer’s, Genova deftly marries science and compassion within Still Alice as her protagonist, 50-year-old Alice Howland, unravels at the hands of early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease. The novel begins with Alice in the prime of her life—she’s a cognitive psychology professor at Harvard and a world-renowned linguistics expert with an equally successful husband and three grown children. But the disease takes hold swiftly, and we cannot help but read on to watch it change Alice’s relationship with her family and the world —forever. A remarkable celebration of life, love, family, and the intricacies of the human mind, Still Alice will spark private thoughts, public conversations and hopefully raise awareness of this debilitating disease.
Still Alice received critical acclaim, including the 2008 Bronte Prize and was a finalist in the general fiction category of the 2008 Next Generation Indie Book Awards. It was a winter 2009 Barnes and Noble Discover Pick; a Jan. 2009 Indie Next Pick; and a Feb. 2009 pick in both the Borders and Target book clubs.
An instant best-seller, Left Neglected also makes use of Genova’s background as a neuroscientist as it tells the story of a woman who suffers severe brain trauma that completely erases the left side of her world. As she struggles to recover, she discovers she must embrace a simpler life, and in doing so begins to heal the things in she’s left neglected in herself, her family, and the world around her. The novel was chosen as a #1 Indie Pick in 2011.
Genova’s latest best-seller, Love Anthony, has been called “an engaging story that fearlessly asks the big questions” by Booklist and “beautifully written, and poignant to the point of heartbreak” by USA Today. In the novel she explores the lives of two women, one a mother who lost her young autistic son and the other a writer who discovers her husband is having an affair. Through a chance encounter the two develop an unexpected and meaningful friendship.
In her own words, Genova says: “The novels I write are about people living with neurological diseases and conditions that are feared, ignored, or misunderstood, portrayed within a story that is accessible to the general public.
When we simply learn the science and statistics—every 68 seconds someone in the US is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s; 1 in 88 children in the US have autism--it’s staggering, but the information tends to stay intellectual, in our heads. Novels reveal the humanity behind these numbers. Stories are a way into people’s hearts, and when this happens, we have more than knowledge. We have real understanding, empathy, sensitivity, the ability to be better caregivers, and maybe the motivation to get involved.”
Genova graduated valedictorian from Bates College with a degree in Biopsychology and has a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Harvard University. She has appeared on Dr. Oz, CNN, Diane Rehm, and was featured in the Emmy award-winning documentary film about Alzheimer’s, To Not Fade Away.
Genova lives with her family on Cape Cod, MA.
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