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Extended Audio Sample Losing My Mind: An Intimate Look at Life with Alzheimers Audiobook, by Thomas DeBaggio Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.71 out of 53.71 out of 53.71 out of 53.71 out of 53.71 out of 5 3.71 (28 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Thomas DeBaggio Narrator: Cotter Smith, Linda Emond, Thomas DeBaggio Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2002 ISBN: 9780743549806
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When Tom DeBaggio turned fifty-seven in 1999, he thought he was embarking on the golden years of retirement -- time to spend with his family, his friends, and the herb garden he spent decades cultivating.

  

One winter day, he told his doctor during a routine exam that he had been stumbling into forgetfulness. After it subsequent battery of tests, DeBaggio joined the legion of twelve million others afflicted with Alzheimer's disease.

Losing My Mind is an extraordinary first-person account that charts the ups and downs of early onset Alzheimer's -- a form of the disease which can he particularly ravaging to younger, more alert minds. DeBaggio started writing on the first day of his diagnosis and has continued despite his slipping grasp on his memory.

DeBaggio paints a vivid picture of the splendor of memory and the pain that comes from its loss. DeBaggio poignantly depicts one of the most important parts of our lives -- remembrance -- and how we tend to overlook it. But to DeBaggio, memory is more than just an account of a time long past, it is one's ability to function, to think and ultimately, to survive. As his life is reduced to moments of clarity, the true power of thought and his ability to connect to the world shines through.

A testament to the beauty of memory, Losing My Mind is more than just an account of Alzheimer's, it is the captivating story of one man's battle to stay connected with the world.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “DeBaggio vividly articulates the profound shock and despair of one person in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease. It is a story made all the more compelling because the person is himself.” 

    Los Angeles Times

  • “Poetic and funny, painful and poignant…Losing My Mind is a haunting, enlightening work.” 

    Chicago Tribune

  • “A brave, disturbing, immensely personal story…the insights are so pure, so startling, it’s a remarkable offering.” 

    Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  • “DeBaggio’s vivid descriptions of changes in memory and thought patterns, as well as his nocturnal visual hallucinations, illuminate this harrowing disease as few other first-person accounts have.” 

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “Terrifying, invigorating, and life-affirming. We owe Tom DeBaggio a debt for his tireless curiosity.” 

    David Shenk, author of The Forgetting

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joyce | 2/15/2014

    " This is a fascinating memoir written by a man afflicted with Alzheimer's and discussing how he manages to live. While I would have thought that the fear of memory loss would predominate, in DeBaggio's case he ruminates repeatedly over the prospect of his death knowing that the prognosis after diagnosis is a matter of a few years. I read this as an accompaniment to Still Alice, an excellent fictional account of a woman going through the same process, and the two worked perfectly together. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Donna | 2/11/2014

    " Interesting to hear what someone who has Alzheimer's says about the progression of his disease, but I didn't learn much more than I already knew. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Colleen | 1/31/2014

    " Pretty amazing first person account of getting Alzheimer's. Also has some science/research of the disease mixed in, which is a bit dry at times, but still worthwhile. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tama | 1/7/2014

    " Mr. DeBaggio's first book about his diagnosis and the fears of a different future than he had ever imagined. Beautifully told and heartbreaking. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kytheria | 12/18/2013

    " I still call it one of my favorite books. Few people will enjoy reading it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melissa | 12/13/2013

    " An intimate look at a terrible disease. I can't imagine losing my memory...especially for those I love. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Angela Wade | 7/18/2013

    " Just couldn't make it through this book. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Patricia Boyle | 7/5/2013

    " While this is an interesting story - Alzheimer's told from the perspective of man in the early stages - the juxtaposition of his past life with the deterioration of his disease makes the story harder to read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brian Francis | 6/13/2013

    " An unflinching, first-person account of what happens to someone - both physically and mentally - following a diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease. Not an easy read, but definitely worth it. DeBaggio's honesty should be admired. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patrick | 6/4/2013

    " An amazingly hard book to read ... to watch someone deteriorating like this, but powerful to read of his perspective. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sylvia | 5/11/2013

    " excellent - beautiful writing "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Connie Hayek | 12/23/2012

    " Excellent perspective, albeit disconcerting, on what it is like to live with Alzheimers. The author shares good days and bad with insight and candor. This is a must-read for anyone caring for a friend or relative with Alzheimers, or facing the disease themselves. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alli | 11/12/2012

    " I did skim parts of this. I really was interested in the factual sections about Alzheimer's. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth | 11/7/2012

    " This is gorgeous and incredibly dark. Not for the fearful. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kelle | 8/6/2012

    " Interesting in many ways, but also hard to read b/c it is really choppy. There are sections of memory, what is going on currently, and then sections about the medical aspect of Alzheimer's all written together. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kim | 9/14/2011

    " This book is a great insight to AD and Dementia. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jose | 6/28/2011

    " Excellent audio book...but it was abridged. excellent book, will use in sw603. amazing story "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patrick | 3/15/2011

    " An amazingly hard book to read ... to watch someone deteriorating like this, but powerful to read of his perspective. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alli | 3/8/2011

    " I did skim parts of this. I really was interested in the factual sections about Alzheimer's. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Donna | 2/27/2011

    " Interesting to hear what someone who has Alzheimer's says about the progression of his disease, but I didn't learn much more than I already knew. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jose | 3/7/2010

    " Excellent audio book...but it was abridged. excellent book, will use in sw603. amazing story "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Colleen | 11/12/2009

    " Pretty amazing first person account of getting Alzheimer's. Also has some science/research of the disease mixed in, which is a bit dry at times, but still worthwhile. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melissa | 7/22/2009

    " An intimate look at a terrible disease. I can't imagine losing my memory...especially for those I love. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth | 6/4/2009

    " This is gorgeous and incredibly dark. Not for the fearful. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Angela | 3/5/2009

    " Just couldn't make it through this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kytheria | 12/30/2008

    " I still call it one of my favorite books. Few people will enjoy reading it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kim | 6/24/2008

    " This book is a great insight to AD and Dementia. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tiffany | 3/12/2008

    " This was an educational and touching book about the this man who finds out he has Alzheimer's disease at the age of 50-something. And you read such a personal story about his struggles as he start to lose his memory and how frustrating it is to lose your identity. "

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About the Author

Thomas DeBaggio (1942-2011) was a respected herb grower, with widely acclaimed herb farms and nurseries in the Washington, DC, area. His book Growing Herbs from Seed, Cutting, and Root won a Benjamin Franklin Award for the best garden book. He was also an advocate for Alzheimer’s research, a victim of the disease himself. He wrote two books on the disease and appeared on NPR and Oprah to discuss it. After his death, the International Herb Association named an annual award in his honor.

About the Narrators

Cotter Smith is an American actor of stage, film, and television. As an audiobook narrator, he has won two Earphones Awards and was a finalist in 1997 for the prestigious Audie Award.

Linda Emond is an award-winning actress of stage, film, television, and audiobook narration. Her performances on Broadway earned her nominations for the Tony Award in 2003 and 2012 and for the Drama Desk Award in 1997 and 2002. She was awarded the Joseph Jefferson Award for her roles in plays at theaters in Chicago. Her film credits include roles in Julie & Julia, Dark Water, and Across the Universe, among others. Her television credits include such series as Elementary, The Good Wife, and Law & Order: SVU, as well as movies such as A Dog Named Christmas. She has narrated dozens of audiobooks, winning three Earphones Awards and being named a finalist four times for the prestigious Audie Award. In 2011 she was named by AudioFile magazine as a Best Voice in Mystery & Suspense for her reading of Flash and Bones.