One of the best books I’ve read on aging is the 2011 book from Susan Jacoby – Never Say Die (Random House Inc.).   Ms. Jacoby covers incredible territory related to the realities of aging.  Weaving in historical references, her own life story, medical and social information and a realistic and even blunt perspective makes this well worth the read.  It is time that we start to talk about aging in terms of something that cannot be botoxed-away.  Even if our outside package doesn’t indicate that we are a certain age, our cell changes most certainly will.   Giving a lot of thought to the later years of old age, Jacoby succinctly writes “…we can barely imagine a time when too little rather than too much might be expected of us” This book provides great motivation for change at a personal, governmental and corporate level.   But first we need to own the issues of aging if we are to improve things.

If you are pressed for time I recommend focusing your reading on pages 110 to 122.  It’s about Alzheimer’s Disease.  Jacoby doesn’t hold back on the unachievable promises made by drug manufacturers, the feelings associated with an Alzheimer’s diagnosis or the challenges of caregiving for someone with the disease.  This is reality.   Longevity increases our risks, especially after age 85.   The challenges of so many of us living longer need to be addressed more aggressively today.