No Sad Songs

Featured
 
4.5 (2)
 
5.0 (1)
1841   0
Write Review
No Sad Songs
Author(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
February 20, 2018
ISBN
9780989908740
Buy This Book
      

Following a family tragedy, 18-year-old Gabe LoScuda suddenly finds himself thrust into the role of caregiver for his ailing grandfather. Between the shopping trips and the doctor visits with Grandpa, Gabe and his friend John try to salvage their senior year, meet girls, and make the varsity baseball team. It doesn’t take long for Gabe to realize that going to school and looking after a grandfather with Alzheimer’s is more work than he ever imagined. And when long-lost Uncle Nick appears on the scene, Gabe soon finds that living with Nick and Grandpa is like babysitting two grown men. Aside from John, the only person who truly understands Gabe is Sofia, a punk-rocking rebel he meets at the veteran’s hospital. When these three unlikely friends are faced with a serious dilemma, will they do what it takes to save Grandpa? If there’s a chance of preserving the final shreds of Grandpa’s dignity, Gabe may have to make the most gut-wrenching decision of his life—and there’s no way out.

Editor reviews

2 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot 
 
4.5  (2)
Characters 
 
4.5  (2)
Writing Style 
 
4.5  (2)
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0

Awesome book.

Gabe is used to helping care for his ailing grandfather. Then tragedy strikes and thrusts eighteen-year-old Gabe into the position of primary care giver for his grandfather with dementia.

They’re so many things to love about, ‘No Sad Songs’. The thing I love most is that the book is set in the 1990’s. This is a time period I haven’t seen a lot of in YA fiction ( or really fiction in general). The nineties are such a nostalgic time period. It is the last decade were our lives were not totally run by cell phones and computers. The simple things in the life of a teenager was very evident in this story. Gabe’s main worries are eating pizza and attracting girls.

The most important theme in, ‘No Sad Songs,’ is caring for someone with dementia. This novel really highlights the divesting situation or a child or grandchild caring for a parent or grandparent with this disease. The dementia sufferers often don’t know who they are or where they are anymore. For example, Gabe’s grandfather constantly relives his time fighting in WWII. Game’s flashbacks also really highlight Gabe’s pain as he remembers the wonderful times with his grandfather. I have read other books centering on dementia (‘Still Alice’) but these novels did not highlight the struggles of caregivers as ‘No Sad Songs’ did.

I really enjoyed the characters and their unique personalities. Gabe and his best friend John’s dynamic is amazing. My favorite character has to be John’s mother Lilly. I loved how fierce and intimidating she was to keep John and Gabe on the straight and narrow. Lilly really provided for some much-needed comedy relief in the story.
I did find the scene in the courtroom later in the book to be a little farfetched. It seemed to workout a little too convenient. I really did love the story though and was happy with the ending so I can overlook such a minor thing.

‘No Sad Songs’ is just an amazing read. I would definitely say this is something that would appeal to someone who is a caregiver. It also is something everyone one should read to help spread the message of elder care in our communities.

Good Points
Important topic. Well written. 1990's.
Was this review helpful to you? 
(Updated: February 22, 2018)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

A Heartbreaking But Also Uplifting Tale About Alzheimer's Disease

The first thing that popped into my mind when I read No Sad Song's synopsis was: this sounds familiar. It's not that I have lived the same experience as the main character, but I found his situation to be relatable to my own with one of my grandparents, which made the read all the more intriguing for me.

The main character of this novel, Gabe LoScuda, finds himself with the difficult task of taking care of his Grandfather who has Alzheimer's, after his parents die in a car accident. Trying to keep the promise he made to his Dad, Gabe swears that no matter how difficult things might get, he will never abandon his grandfather to a facility where he would have to carry his last days alone.

First of all, I cannot get over the fact that Gabe is only 18 and already has such a huge responsibility on his shoulders. His grandfather is a war veteran, and while his mind is not as it used to be, his body still remembers his warring days, making it extremely difficult for Gabe to keep up with him. I felt for him, for every punch and tantrum he took on behalf of his grandfather. I admired his willingness to help him and to keep what little of the family he had left together, including the long lost uncle who showed up at his parent's funeral.

However, Gabe is still a young person with too much on his plate, and some of his decisions lead him to more trouble for the sake of keeping his grandfather close. I understand the sentiment, but when you can't control everything, it's okay to reach out for help. At least when it comes to mental health!

Luckily, Gabe has supporting friends, like John and Sofia, who have his back. I liked this pair of friends! They were good allies with sound advice, and that's something I will always appreciate in books. I specially liked Sofia because she's Mexican. :)

Also, in-between chapters we get to read Gabe's journal entries where he describes moments in the past about his parents when they were alive, and when his Grandfather had yet to develop Alzheimer's. They were interesting bits that worked as a small, happy respite from Gabe's current situation, but they would always end with a tint of melancholy. Still, they may have been my favorite parts of the story!

What didn't do it for me:

This was perhaps a mistake from the ARC or lack of research, but Sofia mentions how she has a tattoo of the Virgen of Guadalupe, who is the Mexican Virgin Mary. It is described that she is wearing a purple robe, when in fact, the Virgen of Guadalupe wears green robes. They are NOT interchangeable and, well, it bugs me that she wasn't described like how she truly is. I believe the Virgin described was the Immaculate Conception Virgin Mary.

Final Verdict:

No Sad Songs is a heartbreaking tale about dealing with Alzheimer's Disease in the family and keeping your loved ones close as much as you can. It brings awareness of what it means to be a caregiver to a person with this disease, and it is truly something very much needed. It's a book definitely worth to pass around so others can understand the struggle!

Good Points
Brings awareness to Alzheimer's Disease
Was this review helpful to you? 

User reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0  (1)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
5.0  (1)
Already have an account? or Create an account
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0

A Story That You Won't Soon Forget! A Must Read!

I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review and all of the views expressed are my own.

Good Points
If you're looking for a coming of age story that is filled with fantastic characterization, a steady plot and Frank Morelli's amazing writing style, look no further than No Sad Songs! I absolutely LOVE this book and would recommend it to anyone! Hands down, a five star read!?
Was this review helpful to you? 
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Resist: 35 Profiles of Ordinary People Who Rose Up Against Tyranny and Injustice
A perfect tool for young readers as they grow into...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle
From the critically acclaimed author of Waiting for Normal and...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Side by Side A Novel of Bonnie and Clyde
Texas: 1931. It’s the height of the Great Depression, and...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Voyage of the Dogs
SOS. Ship damaged. Human crew missing. We are...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Shorty & Clem Blast Off!
The energetic and zany duo Shorty and Clem are back,...
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Bear's Spooky Book of Hidden Things: Halloween Seek-and-Find
If you want to keep kids happily busy for hours...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Strange New World
Dahlia 16's life is a lie. The city of...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Like Never And Always
Liv Burnham thinks nobody knows Morgan Frost like she...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Outcasts- The Blood Dagger: Volume 1
Mystical relics. Powerful vampires. Strange allies. It's hell being...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Ascent (A Peak Marcello Adventure #3)
After conquering the mountains in Afghanistan, Peak Marcello goes...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Here to Stay
For most of high school, Bijan Majidi has flown under...
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Hiding Lies
At Holden Prep, dirty little secrets always have a way...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
We, The Lucky Few
"Each time I think this night reaches its lowest...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Burning Maze (The Trials of Apollo, #3)
The formerly glorious god Apollo, cast down to earth...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Meg has it made. She has money to spare, attends...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Red Ribbon
Shining a light on a little-known aspect of the Holocaust,...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle
 
5.0
"Mason Buttle can't read all that well. And he sweats a lot. And writing isn't something he can do either...."
Voyage of the Dogs
 
5.0
"The Laika is on mission Stepping Stone, traveling outside the solar system to set up a new planet. In addition..."
Shorty & Clem Blast Off!
 
4.5
"'Shorty & Clem Blast Off!' by Michael Slack is a cute addition to Shorty and Clem's adventures. The first book..."
Bear's Spooky Book of Hidden Things: Halloween Seek-and-Find
 
3.5
"'Bear's Spooky Book of Hidden Things' by Gergely Dudas is for anyone who loves books like 'Where's Waldo?' Even adults..."
Funny Kid #2: Stand Up
 
4.5
"After his attempts to run for class president in Funny Kid for President, Max has decided that his identity is..."
Yellow Submarine
 
4.0
"Twice upon a time, once in 1968 and once today, there was an unearthly paradise called Pepperland. In an elaboration..."
Louie (The Puppy Place #51)
 
4.0
"The Petersons are working together to clean up a camp ground near Loon Lake, where they will be spending time..."
Spirit (The Puppy Place #50)
 
4.0
"Lizzie is very used to being around dogs, since her family fosters many of them, and has Buddy, their own..."
Mr. Wolf's Class
 
5.0
"Mr. Wolf is starting his first year of teaching fourth grade. He sets up his classroom and waits for his..."
Tom's Midnight Garden Graphic Novel
 
5.0
"This graphic retelling remains true to the story of the classic 1958 British time slip story. Tom is sent to..."
Welcome to Wonderland #3: Sandapalooza Shake-Up
 
4.0
"P.T. and Gloria have saved the Wonderland Motel, and now because of the celebrity tie-in with the Surf Monkey movie,..."
Al Capone Throws Me a Curve (Tales from Alcatraz)
 
4.0
"There are a lot of things going on for Moose now that summer is approaching. He desperately wants to be..."
So Done
 
4.0
"Bean and Tai are neighbors in a low-income housing project and have been friends for a very long time, but..."
Scout: National Hero (Scout #1)
 
4.0
"Matt and his family have moved to Nevada, where his mother runs an Army base and heads up their K-9..."
Two Dogs in a Trench Coat Go to School
 
5.0
"Waldo and Sassy are hard working dogs who scour the floor for meatballs and keep their humans' house safe from..."
The Lost Continent (Wings of Fire, Book 11)
 
4.0
"Blue and his sister Luna are very close to going through metamorphosis, after which they will be given jobs and..."
Game Changer
 
5.0
"At the end of summer football camp for the Walthorne Wildcats, Ted Youngblood collapses as he comes off the field..."
Double Cross (Twintuition #4)
 
4.0
"Cassie and Caitlyn Waters are still struggling to understand the power they share, The Sight. It is somehow tied to..."
Just Under the Clouds
 
4.0
"Cora's mother has struggled to keep a roof over Cora and her sister Adare's head ever since the death of..."
Revenge of the Teacher's Pets (Brewster Triplets #4)
 
4.0
"Darby, Dawn, and Delaney are determined that seventh grade is going to be AWESOME. However, when they get their schedules,..."