Friday, February 15, 2013

Beautiful Book Series for Memory-Impaired: A Review

I was recently asked if I would review a book designed toward increasing interaction between caregivers and/or family members and individuals with Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, stroke, brain injury, or other memory-impairment conditions. The publisher is Shadowbox Press LLC, a small, independent publisher out of Richfield, Ohio.

I was happy to say 'yes' to the request since Sis and I (like caregivers/family members all around the globe) are constantly looking for ways to engage and interact with Dad. The book I received to review was America, one of eight interactive, large-print Alzheimer's and dementia activity books in the Shadowbox Press line. It, like the others in the series, is comprised of three unique sections, described by the publisher as follows:

The Story

  • Designed to entertain, inform, inspire, and/or educate
  • Developed to evoke memories and encourage opportunities to reminisce
  • Fosters an interest in reading
  • Engaging photos and large-print text written in easy-to-comprehend sentences

 Conversation Starters

  • Features a combination of close-ended (yes or no) and open-ended questions
  • Questions directly correlate to individual sets of pages from the STORY
  • Designed to prompt a dialog from past experiences, events and/or relationships
  • Provides an opportunity to share special memories and unique experiences


  • Designed to provide additional mental and physical enrichment
  • Based on sensory stimulation, creative expression, and physical movement
  • Corresponds to the overall theme of each book
  • Essential to overall good health and emotional well-being

Titles in the line are designed to be of interest to either gender and currently include the above-mentioned America, along with Bible Verses, Colors, Dogs and Puppies, Flowers, Fun and Games, Seasons, and Wild Animals. Each is filled with beautiful, high-quality photos of items that fit the theme, like this photo of the Statue of Liberty from America:

Shadowbox Press received a  2012 National Mature Media award in the Book (Publications/Editorial) category based on these books.. The awards program recognizes companies that are producing the nation's best advertising, marketing and educational materials for older adults, the nation's fastest-growing population.

My Review

I am pleased to be able to highly recommend these books. They are beautifully bound, high-quality tomes that look as though they will stand up to rigorous use. The pictures alone are enough to engage those who are viewing the volumes, but the added story-lines and conversation starters take the burden off of overworked caretakers/family members by providing text and questions to keep the conversation going. The topics are common themes that will be familiar to everyone, increasing the probability of eliciting a response.

I shared America with the folks at Dad's Memory Care Unit and received very favorable comments from both staff and residents.

More information on the series can be found at the publisher's web site: The books can be purchased directly from the web site, and retail for $19.95 each.

** Photo credits: Shadowbox Press

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