Daniel Asa Rose is an award-winning author of novels, memoirs, short stories, essays, reviews, and poetry.
He won an O. Henry Prize and two PEN Fiction Awards for the stories in his first collection, Small Family with Rooster. His first novel, Flipping for It, a black comedy about divorce, was a New York Times New and Noteworthy Paperback. He is also the author of Hiding Places, A Father and His Sons Retrace Their Family's Escape from the Holocaust. His most recent book, Larry's Kidney: Being the True Story of How I Found Myself in China with My Black Sheep Cousin and His Mail-Order Bride, Skirting the Law to Get Him a Transplant--and Save His Life, was named one of the Top Books of the Year by Publishers Weekly.
Coming May 2023
Truth or Consequences
Improbable Adventures, a Near-Death Experience, and Unexpected Redemption in the New Mexico Desert
Published by The University of New Mexico Press
Imprint: High Road Books
Daniel Asa Rose was a successful novelist, memoirist, book critic, and columnist for the New York Times Magazine, Esquire, and others, when the top blew off his domestic life. His wife of sixteen years wanted out. Before he could slip into depression, doubt, and self-loathing, his lifelong friend made him an irresistible proposition: go back to the place where, forty years earlier, their college road trip had come to a crashing halt when they were T-boned and thrown thirty feet in the air by a woman in the decidedly oddball little town of Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
Together, Dan and Tony return to the scene of the crash in an effort to make sense of that fateful moment. He's certain that if he can locate the mysterious blonde in whose arms he almost died, he will find the self he lost and make peace with the life choices he has made. Dan moves into a single-wide trailer four blocks from the crash. Over the next eight months, he searches for the self he left behind forty years earlier. Amid inexplicable encounters, madcap friendships, and the serendipity of second chances, he falls in love with the New Mexico desert and the wiggy place that embraces him.
Advance Praise for Truth or Consequences:
"The best books are the unclassifiable ones, and Truth or Consequences wriggles out of the reader’s grasp on almost every page. Are we reading a memoir, a travel narrative, a fantasy, a reckoning with time and mortality? The answer would be all of the above. What holds it together is Daniel Asa Rose’s comic verve, without which he never could have produced this indelible gallery of American eccentrics. He possesses, too, that most essential of writerly gifts: ravenous curiosity. He really pays attention, and penetrates to the heart of things, places, people. “Attention this deep feels devotional,” Rose notes at one point, and he has captured at least a particle of eternity in his consideration of various lost souls, including his own." --James Marcus, former editor of Harper's Magazine, author of Amazonia and Glad to the Brink of Fear: A Portrait of Ralph Waldo Emerson
"A haunting, surprising, smile-inducing, poignant memoir that paints an irresistible portrait of Truth or Consequences, NM, a down-on-its-luck desert town that in the 1950s sold its soul to rename itself after a TV quiz show. The MacGuffin is that Daniel Rose -- at a crisis point in his life and his marriage -- is searching for the beautiful blonde woman who comforted him after she caused a near-fatal car crash in 1970. But describing this glorious book in those narrow terms is like summarizing Citizen Kane as a movie about a Rosebud sled. This is a book that I will cherish for decades." --Walter Shapiro, political writer for The New Republic and columnist for Roll Call
"At the start of Daniel Asa Rose’s memoir, he’s young and seeking adventure, so he and a friend drive West. In New Mexico, a reckless driver crashes into their car, and Dan goes flying. Decades later, unmoored by the failure of his marriage, Dan returns to New Mexico, looking to investigate what happened, but really to investigate himself. “Truth or Consequences” is — remarkably — the name of the the town. Like the game show, there are twists and turns there, and nothing is quite what it seems. The result is an emotionally complex, stylishly executed and surprisingly moving memoir." --Jessie Kornbluth, headbutler.com
"A shaggy-dog story of the best sort, funny, good-hearted, finely observed, and larded with life lessons. A pleasure throughout." --Peter D. Kramer, author of Death of the Great Man and Listening to Prozac
"Daniel Asa Rose is a great writer, and Truth or Consequences is a great tale. A funny, poignant, bizarrely uplifting adventure." --A. J. Jacobs, author of The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible
"Truth or Consequences is the rollicking tale of Daniel Asa Rose's return to the scene of a near-death experience. Forty years after he almost died in a car accident on a cross-country road trip, he returns to the small desert town where it happened and launches a madcap investigation into the wreck. Along the way, he finds much more than he bargained for: friends, enemies, maybe even himself. This is a thoroughly unique and entertaining memoir." --Justin St. Germain, author of Son of a Gun: A Memoir
"This memoir reveals that each point in one's life may invigorate a new 'coming of age' in one's ever-evolving consciousness--if indeed one possesses the self-discipline and strength of character to follow the truth no matter where it leads. Herein we find that chance is an enormous factor in determining one's destiny, that chance spices the flavor of our lives." --Jack Loeffler, author of Headed into the Wind: A Memoir