60 On Up: The Truth About Aging in America

Lillian B. Rubin, Author . Beacon $23.95 (184p) ISBN 978-0807029282

With honesty, compassion and a large measure of wit and wisdom, 83-year-old author Rubin (Intimate Strangers , Just Friends , etc.) describes in full the world of the elderly in America, where social circles diminish as friends die, sexual desire and ability fade, and the wish to “die with dignity” conflicts with the “often vain hope of putting off our meeting with it just a little longer.” Rubin, a psychotherapist for 35 years, has gathered numerous interviews with seniors and combined them with her own reflections to illustrate clearly the difficult questions today's seniors face, both in the day-to-day and the long run. Straightforward, revealing and thought-provoking, this book makes a fine, thorough primer for middle-aged adults preparing for “this business of getting old” in “a society that sees old age as repugnant at the same time that it... dream[s] of extending life still further”; however, it's best avoided by anyone who wants to keep believing that “if you eat right, sleep right, exercise your body and your brain right, you'll never get really old.” The elderly will find much to nod along with, and a handy tool for getting their point across to middle-aged children whose fearful attitudes toward aging can keep an otherwise normal sense of understanding at bay. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 12/31/2007
Release date: 09/01/2007
Paperback - 184 pages - 978-0-8070-2929-9
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