Hazel McHaffie

Remember Remember

This moving book will resonate with anyone who has ‘lost’ a loved one through the living death of Alzheimer’s.
Sir Cliff Richard


At the Dementia Services Development Centre, University of Stirling, we liked this book so much that we arranged for copies to be given to about 600 delegates from around the world at our international conference. It offers inspiration and hope to anyone learning how to make things better for people with dementia and their carers. And for everyone else, it’s just a really good read.

June Andrews


Throughout the novel McHaffie raises emotional and ethical issues: the use of electronic tagging devices; the funding for Alzheimer’s medication; balancing caring for a close relative and one’s own needs; and questions around the end of life … not as theoretical ‘thin’ cases, as are so often used in teaching in medical ethics, but within the richly characterised world of the novel. This makes Remember Remember a valuable resource for teachers and students of healthcare ethics. These ethical issues, however, are a natural part of the story and the novel is a good read from start to finish whether or not you have an interest in medical ethics.

Tony Hope


Extremely moving and touching. This novel, I’m sure, will resonate deeply with family members and carers trying to cope with this most distressing condition. Recommended.

The Bookbag


McHaffie offers a unique twist to the narrative of dementia. Each chapter of Doris’ perspective takes a step back in time … What (the author) cleverly presents is a mind, and thus a prose, that gets gradually more and more coherent – the mirror image of a mind disassembling through dementia … What I will say to anybody who does pick up Remember Remember is: persevere. The first half may feel a little ordinary, but I think McHaffie was just readying herself for the second half. That’s when things get interesting – in terms of structure, narrative events, and especially narrative voice.


This novel provides an insightful and emotionally true portrayal of the experience of dementia; from the perspectives of both the carer and the patient. It forms a compelling narrative which could provide a good introduction to the relevant ethical issues, particularly regarding decision making for those that lack mental capacity. It is accurately clinically and legally informed and identifies relevant ethical issues … Remember Remember is both moving and humorous, and the realistic warmth of the family’s interaction makes the characterisation a success. The use of a dual perspective in the narration and unusual chronology is inventive and works well, as you gain a richer sense of Doris’s character and the mystery as the story develops, by looking further into the past.  The ending is satisfyingly resolved with a twist.

Institute of Medical Ethics