2008 Common Reading Initiative Guide

About the Author & Book

Chris Rose began working at The Times-Picayune in the summer of 1984, covering crime in the suburb of Jefferson Parish and the politics of two small incorporated cities. Over the years, he covered local and national politics, general features, regional culture and economics, and New Orleans nightlife, music and personalities. Upon his return to New Orleans on the Monday after Hurricane Katrina, he began to cover the early stirrings of life in the streets and has stayed with that beat ever since, chronicling the city as it puts itself back together, shakes off its trauma, and tries to find footing as a viable community. The Pulitzer Prize Board named him a finalist in the commentary category for his post-Katrina columns. Rose, who was born in Washington, D.C. in 1960 and graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1982, is a frequent commentator for National Public Radio's Morning Edition and a writer/performer of several critically acclaimed stage shows in New Orleans.

1 dead in attic is a collection of stories by Rose, recounting the harrowing months of life in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. One reviewer wrote, "Celebrated as a local treasure and heaped with national praise, Rose provides a rollercoaster ride of observation, commentary, emotion, tragedy and even humor — in a way that only he could find in a devastated wasteland.

"They are stories of the dead and the living, stories of survivors and believers, stories of hope and despair. And stories about refrigerators."

1 dead in attic freeze-frames New Orleans, caught between an old era and a new, during its most desperate time, as it struggles out of the floodwaters and wills itself back to life.