Cover Image: Do I Know You?

Do I Know You?

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Member Reviews

Dingfelder knew she wasn't great at remembering faces—but mistaking another man for her husband at the grocery store (there's a whole thing about peanut butter) was one of the clearer clues that she just might have something more going on than a bit of spaciness. And so began a quest to figure it out: a seasoned reporter, Dingfelder reached out to scientist after scientist running studies on the brain to learn more about face blindness and other associated conditions...and to get herself into those studies to see where those conditions fit into her own experience.

I spent a fair amount of time, while reading, trying to come up with a fitting word for the book's tone, and for now at least I've landed on "punchy". Dingfelder brings a lot of energy to the project, and although the book is full of research, it's never dry. The tone wasn't 100% for me—personal preference—but the science is *fascinating* and more than makes up for it. If you haven't heard of face blindness (prosopagnosia), have a look at some photos of people you recognize...and then flip those photos upside-down and see if how much more difficult it is to recognize them. There's science behind why some people can recognize other people instantly, even if it's been years, and others struggle to place the face of their own family member (guess which camp Dingfelder falls into)—and a lot of that science is worked into the book—but at its core, what you need to know is that it's not as simple as having a bad memory for names.

Face blindness sounds lonely to me. I've only met one person who identified as having it (though probably I've known other people with some degree of face blindness, whether or not they were aware of it), and I don't know what her experience was like (though I will be recommending this book to her!), but it sounds like something that can be really isolating without the sorts of tricks that Dingfelder learned along the way. But it's not all loneliness (and for all that I said that the tone wasn't always my personal preference, this bit made me giggle):

'"I hardly remember anyone from school anymore," I say. "Honestly, I don't even remember your kids' names, or how old they are, or what you do for work, or where exactly you live."

"You've always been like that," Brown Anne says.

"No one expects you to remember things," Red Ann says. "We expect you to tell good stories."

My heart floods with joy and gratitude. These guys really know me! And while the facts of their lives slip through my fingers, I know them too—amorphous things, like the cadence of their speech, the kinds of drinks they will order, and how they will respond to my stories about learning to drive. (Red Ann: concern for my safety; Brown Anne: concern for other people's safety.)' (loc. 1989*)

A very quick read for those who are insatiably curious about medical curiosities...or just insatiably curious in general.

Thanks to the author and publisher for providing a review copy through NetGalley.

*Quotes are from an ARC and may not be final.

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Love this Book!
As a big fan of the late neurologist Oliver Sacks, I am fascinated about unusual neurological conditions.
The author has Prosopagnosia or face blindness. She's unable to discern faces, even of her family or even herself.
Finding this out in her late thirties, she embarks on all different tests and becomes a participant in studies.
She discovers she has other weird neurological conditions, including not being able to see in 3d.
I am astonished about how she survives in our world!
Very well written, she's very affable, self deprecating and funny. She is able to present these conditions and medical jargon in a way this non-scientists like me can understand.
Highly recommended! Fans of OliverSacks and other interested in Neurodiversity will really enjoy this book.
Thank you to NetGalley for access to this book.

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Thanks to Netgalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

So, just to start…I found the author mildly insufferable, but in a completely innocuous way. She’s not someone I would like to be friends with but seems like a good soul. Sometimes you just dislike people’s vibes, and this was one of those moments. This will definitely color my entire review.

I’m faceblind, so the second I saw this book I jumped on it. I cannot tell you how many times I mistook childhood friends for others with the same hair color, how many times I had to ask who someone was during my own high school graduation, how creative I have to get at work when trying to describe a customer…Ugh. I have two customers who know intimate family details as well as my last name, swear they are my aunts, and recognize me on sight. To this day I have no idea who they are. I probably chat with them at family reunions. They have my phone number. Who are they? No idea.

So, a memoir about faceblindness and other neurodivergent brain stuff? Count me in!

I don’t read many books on this topic, so I went in blind (pun intended). It was an interesting read! There was a great blend of science alongside narrative experiences, which meant it was full of fascinating information without being too dry or heavy. I don’t think I’ll read anything by this author ever again, because I just plain disliked her vibes, but I don’t regret picking up her memoir.

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Funny and surprising tour of the intricacies of the human brain. It piqued my interest as I suffer from a mild case of prosopagnosia - and after reading it I feel much better about myself. The author shows what neurodiversity really means and how it makes us all different. And, as the author writes, “at the moment when humanity is facing existential-level challenges, we need all brains on deck”.

Sadie Dingfelder has a real knack for making very complicated issues accessible. The first-person narrative works well here, as we join her on an expedition to diagnose herself and discover the roots of her uniqueness. I soon found myself rooting for her, even though I sometimes wondered if she wasn't writing this book to get free access to very expensive medical procedures - she jokes about it a lot, but then again, with American health care costs, who could blame her?..

Thanks to the publisher, Little, Brown and Company, and NetGalley for an advanced copy of this book.

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Thank you Ms. Dingfelder! I Knew I wasn't the only with this condition! It's wonderful to actually find a book on it! Absolute must read for any one with it or for their family and friends who seek to understand it. I have often wished people came in more colors and varieties; everyone is so generic! And touchy- I get accused of racism when I can't even recognize my own family members out of contex! Life is alternately funny and terrifying. Great book, well written. I recommend reading by everyone and think it would make a great classroom or book club read.

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thanks to netgalley & little brown & company for the free earc in exchange for a fair and honest review!

this is a well written book about a very niche topic. if you’re interested in prosopagnosia or stereoblindness, this is a good read. it definitely was interesting to me, as i have a strong interest in psychology and neuroscience.
hearing first-hand reports about different neurological conditions is very interesting to me, and this author’s ability to thread personal experiences and scientific research together was very good.

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I usually gravitate towards reads like these.. utterly unique and educational. The title alone already drew me in. But boy did I not expect to fly through it. Sadie was hysterical and that's what made this book so digestible and a pleasure to read. She was teaching AND making me laugh at the same time. Despite numerous medical (neurological) jargons...I mean A WHOLE LOT OF BRAIN SCIENCE you will come across, Sadie Dingfelder did an amazing job in demystifying the nature of her condition. This book taught me so much on how I see the world. It was raw, witty, vulnerable and empowering. Can't wait to read more of her work. Thank you to NetGalley, Little, Brown and Company, and Sadie Dingfelder for the chance to read this book in advance.

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