2Write for writing and editing

song for rosaleen

Losing and finding a mother in dementia

book cover for Song for Rosaleen


Pip’s memoir, Song for Rosaleen, is both a celebration of her mother Rosaleen’s life and an intimate account of the practical and ethical dilemmas that faced Rosaleen’s six children after she got dementia. While the story is intensely personal, the impending global dementia epidemic gives it universal interest. It raises important questions about who we become when our memories fail, how our rapidly ageing population can best be cared for, and what this means for us all.

Song for Rosaleen was published by Massey University Press in 2018 and launched at Unity Books in front of a packed house. (See our photo gallery.)

Copies can be purchased from 2Write for $10+p&p (email Pip for details), from Massey University Press for $29.99, or online.

Your book was by my bed the whole way and only a few weeks before Mum’s death I photocopied the final two chapters to share with my siblings; it prepared us for what was to come.
– Sara Carbery, freelance writer

For me, reading the book began as a professional task and ended as a gentle reflection on life itself and its meaning and purpose.
– Philippa Fletcher, policy advisor, Alzheimers NZ

I have no doubt this book will resonate with a huge portion of readers — especially anyone who has watched a loved one decline due to a degenerative illness.
– Mandy Hager, author and creative writing tutor

Love song, lament, protest song: Song For Rosaleen is all these and more. Highly recommended reading.
Sue Wootton, co-editor of Corpus, medical humanities online forum

Media coverage of Song for Rosaleen includes: