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Publisher's Summary

Four Rooms, Upstairs - a finalist for the Next Generation Indie Book Award - is the story of Linda Appleman Shapiro, an immigrant daughter who grew up on the top floor of a small home in 1940s Brooklyn, and struggled to understand her mentally ill mother. For years Linda tried to ignore the phases when her mother was "not herself." As the youngest child and only girl, Linda spent many days at home alone with her mother, watching her battle memories of loss and despair, unable to cope. But at that time, her mother was not seen as mentally ill - she was simply ill.

Linda was appalled by the treatments prescribed to her mother and determined to make life better for her family. Linda eventually persevered, becoming a psychotherapist to help others like her and her mother, and marrying acclaimed audio narrator George Guidall.

©2007 Linda Appleman Shapiro; (P)2008 Recorded Books, LLC

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

it was like reading about my life.

Eventhough the author and I are years apart...I was born 1958, the story was so much like what I had experienced that is was as if someone took a snapshot of my early life! Great story and very good narration.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • B Rose
  • Hillsborough NC
  • 11-03-14

Not for me

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Only if they're really interested in a very long story having little to do with mental illness.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

The family's heritage. Just was too long.

Do you think Four Rooms, Upstairs needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

No

Any additional comments?

This may be for others but not for me. Too many other good books on the subject. If it had Ben half as long I may have finished it.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • lisa
  • Indianapolis, India
  • 01-02-13

Great insight into mental illness

What made the experience of listening to Four Rooms, Upstairs the most enjoyable?

I think Linda Shapiro told her story well and showed remarkable insight into the world of mental illness. She did not preach or whine about it just wove it into her autobiography.

Who was your favorite character and why?

George. While George did not narrate this book, I have listened to him many times as the narrator of other books and he is one of the greatest narrators I have ever heard. Also Linda who had the grace to hold herself above the family problems.

Which scene was your favorite?

When they were in the theater and George was on stage. The mother had a funny albeit embarrassing reaction to the kissing scene.

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Nothing new here...

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

This book is not exactly time well spent, but it might be interesting to some in a sort of ho-hum way. There's really no surprises here, any first-year psychology student could come up with the same complaints about any disturbed parent, and I had the feeling Linda Shapiro should just get over it already!

Would you ever listen to anything by Linda Appleman Shapiro again?

I don't think I would listen to another book by this author, who seems to be to have a rather ordinary mind.

Which character – as performed by Suzanne Toren – was your favorite?

None of the characters are especially memorable, but there's some nostalgic interest in the descriptions of the old neighborhood, which I know well, and the old days, to which I also belong.

Was Four Rooms, Upstairs worth the listening time?

It was o.k. as entertainment, mild, inoffensive, but finally too predictable.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful