Parkinson Pete’s Bookshelves: Reviews of Eighty-Nine Books about Parkinson’s Disease, by Peter G. Beidler
Parkinson Pete’s Bookshelves: Reviews of Eighty-Nine Books about Parkinson’s Disease (260 pages), is an invaluable reference work for anyone who lives with the disease or knows someone living with the disease. The book is divided into three sections: 30 works of nonfiction by doctors and others who do not have the disease, 36 works of nonfiction by doctors and others with the disease, and 23 novels featuring characters with the disease.
Peter G. Beidler, aka “Parkinson Pete,” is the Lucy G. Moses Distinguished Professor of English, Emeritus, at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. He has published widely on pedagogy and on authors as diverse as Geoffrey Chaucer, Henry James, Mark Twain, J. D. Salinger, and Louise Erdrich. Parkinson Pete’s Bookshelves is his sixth book with Coffeetown Press. He was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2006. He lives in Seattle, WA.
Parkinson’s disease has struck more than a million people in the United States, and many more worldwide. Although it is an incurable, progressive, and ultimately debilitating neurological disease, Parkinson’s can be managed with certain medicines, treated with certain surgeries, and slowed down with regular exercise and nutritional regimens.
In the past two decades, many conflicting and confusing books about Parkinson’s disease have appeared. Some were written by doctors who have been trained to study and treat the disease. Some were written by men and women with the disease who wanted to share with others what they have learned. Still others are novels about fictional characters with Parkinson’s.
How are doctors, patients, families, friends, and reference librarians to know which book or books will best serve the particular needs of readers? Parkinson Pete spent several years collecting, reading, and writing reviews of eighty-nine books about the disease. His no-nonsense reviews are an indispensable guide for people who want to know what books will most help them understand Parkinson’s disease, the people who have it, and the people who treat it.
Says Beidler, “The point is not to impose on others my quirky likes and dislikes, but rather to help readers choose which ones are most likely to give them the information they seek. If my evaluation is important to you, you will probably be able to tell from the tone of my reviews which ones I was most impressed with and which ones I was most skeptical about.”
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