Read Blue Hydrangeas by Marianne Sciucco Online

blue-hydrangeas

What if the person who knew you best and loved you most forgot your face, and couldn’t remember your name? A nursing facility is everyone's solution for what to do about Sara, but her husband, Jack, can't bear to live without her. He is committed to saving his marriage, his wife, and their life together from the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease. He and Sara retired yearsWhat if the person who knew you best and loved you most forgot your face, and couldn’t remember your name? A nursing facility is everyone's solution for what to do about Sara, but her husband, Jack, can't bear to live without her. He is committed to saving his marriage, his wife, and their life together from the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease. He and Sara retired years ago to the house of their dreams, and operated it as a Cape Cod bed and breakfast named Blue Hydrangeas. Jack has made an impossible promise: He and Sara will stay together in their beautiful home no matter what the disease brings. However, after nine years of selfless caregiving, complicated by her progressing Alzheimer’s and his own failing heart, he finally admits he can no longer care for her at home. With reluctance, he arranges to admit her to an assisted living facility. But, on the day of admission, Sara is having one of her few good days, and he is unable to follow through. Instead, he takes them on an impulsive journey to confront their past and reclaim their future. In the end, he realizes that staying together at any cost is what truly matters....

Title : Blue Hydrangeas
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780989559201
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 234 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Blue Hydrangeas Reviews

  • Ruth
    2018-11-09 20:00

    Imagine the feeling of walking into the home that you know so well and having the love of your life not recognize you even though you have been married 50+ years. Paul faces this issue as he has to decide if it is time for him to take Sara to live at an assisted living home where his wife can obtain around the clock care. How do you decide to give up waking next to your spouse each day? When they have good days amongst the bad, how do you know when it is time? What do you do with yourself when the other person who helped to bring life into your home is no longer in residence? Written by a nurse who worked with many patients, this book gives you a glimpse into a life torn asunder by this disease and the complexities of making these decisions. It also shows how the entire family is affected and needs to play a part in the decisions that need to be made. A very real tale about love and the loss that this disease brings with it long before the life finally reaches its end.

  • Story Circle Book Reviews
    2018-11-08 14:01

    Blue Hydrangeas is, by far, the most tender love story I've read in a very long time. While not a "happily ever after" love story, Blue Hydrangeas is sure to be one you will ponder for some time after you have finished reading it.The subtitle is "an Alzheimer's love story." But while the book tackles the reality of life with Alzheimer's (for the person diagnosed with it as well as the friends and family members coping with it) Blue Hydrangeas is not just another book about Alzheimer's. It is a tale of a woman whose whole life has been up-ended by her disease. It is a tale of the man who loves her deeply and wants nothing more than to stay with her at their home for the rest of their days. It is a tale of close family members and friends who want to help but are often at a loss to know what to do or how to help. And, perhaps most importantly, it is a gentle reminder to confront the past, face the future and live each and every moment to its fullest.After 50 years of marriage, Jack and Sara Harmon have shared many celebrations and crises but none as encompassing as the disease which is slowly taking away Sara's memory and personality. They have had children and lost one to an unfortunate drowning accident on the Cape. They have welcomed countless people into their successful bed and breakfast establishment and enjoyed serving their guests with comfort and hospitality. Jack has had a successful career as a pharmaceutical rep. Sara has enjoyed success as a local artist whose paintings are seen all over the Cape Cod area. Now, she doesn't remember the daughter who drowned, even when seeing pictures in her treasured photo albums. There are times when she doesn't recognize her grandson. Before her keys were taken away, there were incidents where she'd leave to drive ten minutes to the market for one item and return more than two hours later with nothing in hand. Many are the mornings when Jack awakens in the wee hours to the sounds of pots and pans clanging in the kitchen and discover Sara in the process of "making breakfast for our guests"—even though the bed and breakfast has been closed for years and there are no guests. Life is anything but what they'd hoped it would be when they planned for their later years together.Sciucco has written a poignant tale that embraces the good times, celebrates the importance of family and reminiscing, and brings to light the deeply painful struggles a caregiver goes through, trying to be realistic yet honoring promises made to a then-healthier spouse. The author very deftly uses the techniques of reminiscing as key elements in her story: Time spent going through photo albums so that Sara can relate her memories of the persons and events. Drives down familiar roads. Daily routines that bring order into an otherwise chaotic life. And all of it done with tenderness, compassion, honesty and integrity. She has captured some of the real-life hardships for those with the disease, as well as for their caregivers.Jack promised Sara that they would stay together forever at their lovely Cape Cod home, Blue Hydrangeas. But Jack's health issues can no longer be ignored, and after nine years of caring for Sara, he must admit that it is sometimes an overwhelming task. When the time comes for him to place Sara in a care facility, a spur-of-the-moment road trip brings the story full circle, unites the family in a plan that will honor the health and emotional needs of both Sara and Jack, and leaves the reader feeling the power of a love story well-told.by Lee Ambrosefor Story Circle Book Reviewsreviewing books by, for, and about women

  • Phyllis Peters
    2018-10-27 12:57

    Marianne Sciucco’s BLUE HYDRANGEAS is an Alzheimer’s love story that taps the reader gently on the shoulder. We turn to see Sara and Jack, a couple whose devotion to each other will break our hearts when the dreaded disease steps in. Which it does immediately. As the story opens, Sara has just been diagnosed. Then suddenly, fast-forwarded to nine years later, we are dropped into her predicament. The couple’s dream home on the Cape—Blue Hydrangeas—functions as a bed-and-breakfast, but the cozy life they have been enjoying there is disintegrating rapidly: Sara dresses inappropriately, does not recall her own whereabouts, accuses others. And of course, there’s the dreaded falling. Jack curbs his own denial as loved ones around him begin to utter the damning phrase, “Nursing home.” Jack’s physical ailments force him to take action. But when he finds himself at the entrance to a facility, ready to drop off his beloved wife, anger and helplessness swell. Fleeing seems the only answer. As a recent reader, I would like to have read more about this emotional escape hatch and what happens once they slip through it. Jack and Sara’s relationship runs so deep, so tenderly symbiotic, that her outbursts and difficult situation are the perfect catalyst for Jack’s actions. Yet this section is a bit abbreviated. Despite the brevity, however, poignant moments of searching and heartbreak lead the reader, along with Sara and Jack, to the inevitable. Sara’s and others’ experienes are both realistic and moving, and family reactions are—as happens so faithfully in life—shock and utter helplessness. Having been through the experience with my own loved ones, I was shocked and helpless all over again, and reminded by this story that acceptance comes on its own terms.BLUE HYDRANGEAS is a story of detail and devotion, about the comfort they provide when, either unintentionally or purposefully, we get lost.

  • One-Click
    2018-10-24 16:46

    AudiobookNarration - Elinor Bell - REALLY GOOD! Really! Wow...This is such an incredible book. I lost my mother in April 2014 to Alzheimers. This book does an exceptional job of portraying, not only what the caregivers go through with this stupid disease, but what the diagnosee is going through as well. The confusion, the fear, the denial, the paranoia. The struggle for caregivers to try to keep the promises that they made to their loved one and the shame (maybe shame isn't the right word, but the desire to hide what's going on from everyone on the outside because you know your loved one would be horrified). The terror you see on their face when you know that they realize what's happening to them and there's nothing that can be done to stop it. The pain when that person no longer knows who you are. The relief when the disease progresses to the point where they no longer realize that they have Alzheimers - so at least you don't have to see that struggle and pain in their eyes and soul anymore. This is the story of a elderly couple in love, that are bound and determined to stay in their home, stay together, kiss each other good night, wake up next to each other every morning, while they try to navigate this disease. We experience this disease through the eyes of Sara and her husband Jack, but also through the eyes of friends, neighbors, children and grandchildren. This is a poignant story about the tragic disease called Alzheimers filled with love and loss and it is spot on!Just fabulous!That is all. This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast.com

  • Karen
    2018-10-22 15:55

    **I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**I worked for a quarter of a century as an English teacher before retraining to be a gerontologist, so I am very interested in literary representations of aging and age-related challenges. I was happy to read a novel about Alzheimer's Disease. Sciucco tells a very sweet story about Jack and Sara, a long-time married couple who are trying to respond to Sara's worsening Alzheimer's Disease. They ran a bed-and-breakfast together, but Sara's memory problems made that challenging. In addition, Jack has trouble with his heart. Their struggles are similar to real-life couples facing such a challenge. They have friends and relatives who are showing concerns, they are trying to maintain their independence as long as possible, they have conflicting emotions about how to balance their desire for freedom with their need for safety. And they take a long time to recognize that Sara's memory problems are much more serious than age-related cognitive changes. It's a sweet little book that I read in one sitting. You can feel Jack's concern for his wife, Sara, and his confusion about how to respond appropriately. It's a good book for developing empathy for people dealing with late-life challenges. It might help family members start a conversation about care options.

  • Stacy
    2018-10-20 14:53

    I won this book as a FirstRead.It has been 9 years since Sara was diagnosed with Alzheimer's, and her husband, Jack, is determined to take care of her at home no matter what. However, after one accident too many in their home, Sara's doctor and son decide it is time for Sara to be moved to an assisted living facility. Jack struggles with the idea of them not being able to live out the rest of Sara's days in Blue Hydrangea's, their family home that has always been Sara's dream.You can feel the emotion pouring out of the pages of this story. The author's experiences working with Alzheimer's patients has helped create a very realistic portrait of what families dealing with Alzheimer's go through.

  • L. Fabry
    2018-10-23 16:59

    I'm only giving it 4 out of 5 because I have no experience on the subject matter to draw upon. Jack and Sara are about to go through the toughest challenge of their lives when Sara is diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Fast forward nine years later, and we find life between them has drastically changed. As Jack struggles to hang onto his old life for just a little longer, the consequences of doing so become more dangerous for the whole family. But no matter how deep she slips, Jack is always able to find a sliver of the woman he loves in Sara.I never thought I would say this about a book, but I was simultaneously depressed and inspired.

  • Teresa Kander
    2018-10-30 18:14

    **I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.**This is a beautiful, heart-breaking love story. It's the story of an older couple and their journey dealing with the wife's Alzeheimer's over a decade. There is humor, sadness, and so much love. It's so well written that you lose yourself in it and forget that it is a work of fiction. I would highly recommend this for anyone of my age group who has begun to have trouble relating to the romantic stories of twenty-somethings. This is what love looks like for those of us of "a certain age."

  • Julia A. McDonald
    2018-10-17 20:00

    Beautifully told story of love,loyalty and self sacrifice.this story is a real heart breaker. a man's love for his wife and determination to care for her, even to his detriment is inspiring to say the least. It brings home the sad reality of caring for an Alzheimer patient and the difficult decision to let go. a must read for anyone who has a close friend or family member with this terrible disease.

  • Kati
    2018-11-11 15:00

    ***I received an e-copy of this book for free in exchange for my unbiased opinion of this book.The story of Jack and Sara is a heart-breaking one as Sara goes through the journey of Alzheimer's disease. The devoted couple are put to the test as the disease worsens and Jack has a harder time taking care of Sara on his own. This is a gripping story and it flows well -- not a hard read at all. This book is excellent.

  • Cathy
    2018-10-30 17:14

    I received this book for free in exchange for my unbiased review.Jack and Sara's story evolves amid the beautiful backdrop of Cape Cod. Theirs is a touching love story that faces the challenges and heartbreak of Alzheimer's disease. The characters are well-developed and the story portrays the progression of Alzheimer's in a realistic light. A very enjoyable book that I would recommend.

  • Suzanne Gunter McClendon
    2018-10-23 13:53

    For those that have no experience with a loved one with Alzheimer's, this is an eye-opener.For those that have walked this road before, it opens the floodgates of heartache and the memory of losing someone while they're still here.It is a touching story of love and devotion, living the vows of "in sickness and in health, till death do us part".

  • Jean Lee
    2018-10-18 13:09

    While reading Marianne Sciucco's fictional story, I was taken back to the years of care-taking and decision making for my own parents who both died of Alzheimer's disease. Thank you, Marianne, for writing a beautiful love story portraying the honest devastation of the disease, yet reinforcing the desire to preserve the dignity of those afflicted.

  • Leigh Ann
    2018-10-18 15:03

    Spectacular Bookthis was eye opening to what a person goes throught who has Alzheimer's disease along with their families and friends. The story was heart felt and wonderfully written.

  • Donna Riegel
    2018-11-07 20:10

    What a beautiful story about Alzheimers and commitment to your partner. It is a shame that all Alzheimers stories don't end happylike this one did. My father has this disease and it is not very pretty!!!!

  • Skywalker Payne
    2018-10-23 20:44

    This is a touching story of Jack and Sara whose marriage of over 50 years holds them together through the pains of Sara’s Alzheimers disease. Sciucco creates characters who are compelling and tells a story that keeps you on the edge of your seat.

  • Debbie Hendrix
    2018-10-19 17:03

    Sweet touching love story!! Jack and Sara do not want to live apart but Alzheimer's is giving them no choice. Love the fight Jack puts up to keep his promise to Sara. Live every day to the fullest because you never know when it can end!

  • Myeve123
    2018-11-12 14:10

    A touching love story. My father has Alzheimer and my heart goes to my mother who has to care for him. This book reminds me how little time we have left.

  • NancyL Luckey
    2018-10-14 20:51

    Got this ebook from Amazon's Daily Deals. Read it in one sitting. So sad what Alzheimer's does to families.

  • Linda Brendle
    2018-10-14 12:55

    Blue Hydrangeas is a beautifully written novel that tells the story of a man’s all-consuming love for his wife who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. It is also the story of how this terrible disease affects the entire network of family and friends that surrounds the affected person. Marianne Sciucco does not mention a personal connection with Alzheimer’s, but I’m sure she has dealt with it in her career as a nurse. She definitely writes about the dementia experience with the insight and sensitivity of one who has watched a loved one disappear slowly, one memory at a time. The story is about more than the disease, though. Sciucco paints lovely word pictures of the Blue Hydrangeas Bed & Breakfast and of the love between Jack and Sara that is stronger than the trials they must face together. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and am looking forward to the prequel that will be coming soon.

  • Nancy Hayes
    2018-10-25 16:05

    Alzheimer's! Such a sad disease.This story of two people very much in love in their older years and then the person he loves becomes someone else. This book would be beneficial to someone who is seeing what Alzheimer is doing to some one they love dearly. It shows how difficult it becomes to care for that person no matter how much you love them. Hopefully, it will help others to make the decision when it is time to let their love one be under the care of others. It is a beautiful love store but a sad one. Jack was blessed because Sara always remember who he was. That is not always the case.. A wonderful read.

  • Peggy Bushy
    2018-11-06 18:07

    I absolutely loved this book. Not only is it something that any person, couple, or caregiver can relate to but it's a beautiful story of love and inspiration. I wanted the story to go on forever.This book would be a great gift for someone you know who is, or has been a caregiver. It really is heartwarming.

  • Betty Ferril
    2018-10-17 14:14

    A love story that would touch any heart I chose this rating because it deserves it. So well written. I loved about their lives at Blue Hydrangeas. I felt their frustration of the terrible disease and ageing,as I am 96 years but thank the Lord for my mind.

  • Ann Campanella
    2018-10-24 18:52

    Marianne Sciucco has done a beautiful job of portraying the experience of Alzheimer's from many perspectives with characters who feel so real they could walk off the page. Blue Hydrangeas is a tender love story that reveals the complexities of aging and loss. An enjoyable and meaningful read!

  • Gail
    2018-10-20 14:59

    This book shows an enduring love in health and into the darkness known as Alzheimer's. The struggle is immense as Sara declines and the decision to close their B&B is made. While telling a beautiful story of love, it also tells of the horrendous problems this disease brings to all it touches.

  • Kathleen Wheeler
    2018-11-05 14:01

    An Alzheimer's love story indeed and a well written novel. I enjoyed this story and the compromise that allowed a couple to stay together in spite of a despicable disease.

  • Wesley
    2018-11-14 18:01

    Blue Hydrangeas: An Alzheimer's Love Story by Marianne Sciucco is a real love story. Not a true love story, but a real one.I think love is the subject most written about in all of history. Listen to the radio - almost all the songs you hear will be about love. The greatest plays ever written are about love. Countless movies and books have been written on the subject. Almost every fairy tale ever told is about love. It's the thing we most crave. People need food, water, and shelter to survive. They need love to live. That is why it is a universally sought after... thing. The only problem with the plays, music, books, movies, etc. is that they only seem to catch the first glimpse of love. Most would call it infatuation, puppy love, or even lust, in most cases. My favorite appellation for it is twitterpated. What most people don't realize is that those rushed feelings of deep emotion are only the tip of the iceberg... the door to love, if you will. Real love starts where most relationships leave off, after that initial rush goes away. After the first big fight, or the big wedge of different lives trying to mesh together. After the excitement of finding out everything about the person you are so enthralled with. That's when true love begins to grow; when you have to work for it. You have to begin sacrificing, not just superficially, but truly sacrificing because that person is worth way so much more than whatever else is going on in your life. That is what Blue Hydrangeas is about.Before I get into the review, I just wanted to say what a truly wonderful portrayal of life with someone with Alzheimer's Mrs. Sciucco painted for the reader. My grandfather had Alzheimer's disease. I was little, and don't remember much, but I do remember his confusion. We'd be at Grandma and Grandpa's house, watching T.V., and suddenly he'd yell at us for being in his house."What are you kids doing in my house!" "Grandpa, we're your grandkids,"we'd say. "Who's kids are you," he'd ask. "We're Paul's kids." "That's right," He'd say. Then he'd go back to watching T.V. like nothing had happened, only to repeat the conversation several minutes later.I remember thinking that he was being silly sometimes. Sometimes he'd scare us. Sometimes he'd worry us, but mostly he was just Grandpa, and we knew he was sick. Unlike in this great novel, my Grandmother was not able to keep Grandpa at home. She got breast cancer, and couldn't take care of him for the last months of his life. When he died, the nurses said he'd been calling out her name all through the night. I remember thinking how scared he must have been, knowing how confused he was most of the time, at not having his beloved wife there to comfort him as his spirit left him. I share this because Mrs. Sciucco paints a perfect picture of what it is really like to live with such a person. The experiences Jack and Sara and their family go through are all too familiar to me. I read her bio and found out that she was a nurse, and worked with Alzheimer's patients, so it all makes sense. Thank you, Mrs. Sciucco for bringing light to this difficult disease. It's more than just being forgetful. It really affects the lives of everyone around the patient. Okay, on to the review. Sara has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. She's scared of losing everything she's worked her whole life to build - family, friends, their home - so she makes Jack (her husband) promise that he won't allow her to be put into a home. Jack vows that he will keep them together no matter what. As is, sadly, the case in most such instances, everyone wants to intervene on their behalf. Jack finds that to keep his vow, he has to battle his confused wife and her constantly failing state of mind, his own children, doctors, nurses, and case workers. Everyone seems to "know" what is best for the old couple. They are all kind people, and are trying to do what is best for the couple, but Jack can't bear to be away from his one true love. With his failing heart, he finally gives in to the pressure of all of those around him, but when the day comes for him to take his dear Sara to the care facility, she has a lucid day. He can't bear to break his promise to her while she's aware of what he's doing. Instead, he decides to take her around the cape, where they live, and try to rekindle memories, and their life-long love. This story is warming to the heart, and though it's not the twitterpated kind of love you see so prevalent in the world today, it's a story of true love.

  • Terry
    2018-11-12 17:47

    3/6/17

  • Donna Weaver
    2018-11-14 14:47

    WHAT IT'S ABOUTWhat if the person who knew you best and loved you most forgot your face, and couldn’t remember your name? A nursing facility is everyone's solution for what to do about Sara, but her husband, Jack, can't bear to live without her. He is committed to saving his marriage, his wife, and their life together from the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease. He and Sara retired years ago to the house of their dreams, and operated it as a Cape Cod bed and breakfast named Blue Hydrangeas. Jack has made an impossible promise: He and Sara will stay together in their beautiful home no matter what the disease brings. However, after nine years of selfless caregiving, complicated by her progressing Alzheimer’s and his own failing heart, he finally admits he can no longer care for her at home. With reluctance, he arranges to admit her to an assisted living facility. But, on the day of admission, Sara is having one of her few good days, and he is unable to follow through. Instead, he takes them on an impulsive journey to confront their past and reclaim their future. In the end, he realizes that staying together at any cost is what truly matters.MY TAKEI'll rate this 4 1/2 and round it up to 5 stars. This is a gentle, tender story of an elderly couple facing the monster that is Alzheimers. The book is filled with flashbacks that are interspersed with the current day story, when Jack is finally faced with the reality that he cannot continue to care for his beloved wife by himself--it's literally killing him.Through those flashbacks, the reader is able to see the woman Sara had been and understand why Jack worked so hard to convince himself that he could cling to their old way of life. But Alzheimers is a terrible disease that steals away not just the memories of the loved one with it but the person they used to be, all while letting slip in little glimmers of that loved one. Just to enough to tease that she was really still in there. Somewhere.It's a scary tale for me because my husband's father and several of his aunts and uncle have had Alzheimers. I could be in Jack's position some day. I learned a lot from the story, things I didn't know before, but the "education" I received helped me to understand the disease better. Now I can only pray I won't have to use it first hand.I received a copy of the audiobook in exchange for an honest review.

  • Tony Parsons
    2018-10-14 16:47

    Jack Harmon (American Pharmaceuticals, pharmaceutical salesman, 80) & Sara Harmon (greeting card designer) lived in/on Cape Cod (Nantucket Sound) & had been married for 45 yrs. Fast forward 9 yrs. Blue Hydrangeas (Falmouthport, MA) had been a bed/breakfast for almost a decade but Jack & Sara were no longer in business. Sara mind had started to deteriorate & it had taken its toll on Jack. Jack got others to help Amelia Wright (Mashpee, housekeeper) & Margie Rose Fantagucci (friend, Sea Song Inn).Robert (paramedic) & Jeremy (paramedic) soon arrived & were going to take Sara to the hospital. Jack had hurt his back, everything checked out OK.Sarah had a minor injury & a serious urinary tract infection & was dehydrated. She was admitted complete with medication/PT.The medical staff consulted a neurologist, a psychiatrist & did a MRI of Sara brain.Dr. Keith Fallon informed them Sara had an onset of dementia. Her future it would turn into Alzheimer’s. Allison (C/M) discussed with Jack about putting Sarah in an assisted living facility.David Harmon (son) & Jack also discussed his health condition (heart) Sarah present/future health care.Allison had completed the ethical/proper paper work & it was ready for Dr. Keith Fallon signature. Bayside Village Senior Living Center had become a reality for Sara.Marlene McHale (BV Admissions Director) was there to greet the 2 of them. Or was she? 1 of my many HS sweethearts just had to admit her mom same thing to an assisted living facility 60 miles from here. Last week the kids divided up her things & had a yard sale. They got lucky 2 great-great granddaughters wanted to rent the house move here find a job, & start college next semester. A story that will touch your heart. A very awesome book cover, great font & writing style. A very well written could be true-to-life book. It was very easy for me to read/follow from start/finish & never a dull moment. There were no grammar or any repetitive or out of line sequence. But several typo errors (sentence structure). Lots of exciting scenarios, with several twists/turns & a great set of unique characters to keep track of. This could also make great romantic family movie, or mini TV series. There is no doubt in my mind this is a very easy rating of 5 stars. Thank you for the free book (Story Cartel) Tony Parsons MSW (Washburn)