Bill Schmalfeldt is serving notice. It's time for Parkinson's disease patients to stop being invisible. It's time for a nationwide effort to raise awareness about crippling degenerative neurological disorder and the havoc it wreaks on American families - approximately 1.5 million people currently have a PD diagnosis with 50-thousand new cases each year. Having had PD himself since 2000 at age 45, Bill volunteered for experimental brain surgery in 2007. He spins a humorous, poignant, sometimes angry tale about his life with this incurable progressive neurological condition. He will soon retire from Federal service, planning to use his remaining time, focus and energy to help fund the research that will find the cure. In fact, 100% of the author proceeds from this book will be donated to Parkinson's research charities. This book should be owned by anyone who has Parkinson's, anyone who knows someone with PD, or anyone who might get Parkinson's someday - in other words - you!
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
This book tells the true story of the personal experience of a Parkinson's patient as he goes through an experimental clinical trial, But also the aftermath and interactions with his family and the outside world during and after the procedure.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Since this is a true story, I give so much credit for the bravery the author had for going through a clinical trial and the support his wife gave him throughout the entire experience.
Which scene was your favorite?
I think though very informational the interaction between the Author and his wife brought moments of laughter even as the author faced the unknown with this experimental trial.
Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
This book made me think. There is so much that we do not know about this disease. There has been a lot of information put out about different neurological disorders but before reading this I realize I was in the dark about a lot of connections and differences that PD has to other disorders.
Any additional comments?
I would highly recommend this book. The audio is not the best of the best, but as the author can no longer record using his own voice and this is a prior recording from when he could with a bit added to it to form the extended version, it is still very good quality and interesting to hear this man's experience in his own words and voice.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
This is a story that needs to get out. All I knew about Parkinson's Disease before listening to this book was that Michael J. Fox has it and shakes, when I saw him on TV. Nothing else.
Bill Schmalfeldt has had PD for many years and using the centerpiece of a an experimental Brain Stimulation study conducted at Vanderbilt Medical Center, he explains PD from the inside out in a humorous, wry, self deprecating, totally non-depressing manner.
He is an excellent writer, and has a way with rich descriptions of everyday things. Following how his life continuously changes over time and how with a positive attitude, he deals with it is emotionally quite moving.
Bill recorded the book a few year ago and some of the production, like the repetitive organ music stings, and some effect processing to indicated internal thinking, got in the way in my opinion. The story was more than strong enough to hold up through the power of words and Bill's reading.
It must have been a Herculean effort to record the end of the book and the new intro and addendum since PD took a toll on his voice, and extensive audio editing was required, but it hardly is apparent in the final product.
I wish the narrative was bit tighter as Bill does tend to ramble on now and then such as in his reaction to a letter he received, and I would have liked to know a bit more about the findings from the Vanderbilt study, but these are very minor points.
I learned a great deal from the audiobook both about Parkinson's Disease and how you can decide to either give in or roll with the punches and make the best out of whatever happens.
Bill made the best of it, and it resulted into a work that needs to be heard. I recommend it very highly, both as an education and an entertainment.