How do you cope when you have to watch the vibrant, intelligent man you love struggle with a devastating disease? Julia Kelly approaches this challenge with unflinching honesty. She documents her life with Charlie beautifully; from the heady days of falling in love to the heart-breaking everyday truth of Alzheimer’s and raising a small child when your partner needs full time care. This is a powerful, life-affirming and humbling book, one that will stay with you long after the last page.
Recommended by Anita Power, Dubray Kilkenny
Julia Kelly met a charismatic and successful artist, Charlie Whisker, while she was working on her first novel. He was twenty years older than her. Their relationship was passionate and extraordinary; each of them inspired the other. Their friends were writers, artists and rock stars; they lived a glamorous life of exhibitions, parties and concerts. They became parents to a daughter they adored. But Charlie suddenly changed, becoming hopelessly forgetful, angry and confused. This is an unbearably honest, unsentimental and heartbreaking description of a brilliant man's mental disintegration and its effects on his family. Charlie's disturbing behaviour is described in a series of terrible, understated revelations. An unforgettable telling of a story that will be familiar to many thousands of people in the UK and Ireland.