"Based on a series of Pulitzer Prize-winning articles by Washington Post journalist Leon Dash, this is the harrowing true story of one black family's battle to survive against insurmountable odds. Rosa Lee spans half a century of hardship and struggle, as it chronicles the lives of Rosa Lee Cunningham and her children in the slums of Washington, D.C., a short distance from the towering monuments of the world's most prosperous nation.
Born into a world of abject poverty and violence, Rosa Lee became a mother at fourteen and a wife at sixteen. WHen her welfare checks proved insufficient to feed her growing family--she ultimately bore eight children--she turned to prostitution and selling stolen clothes and drugs. Miraculously, two of her sons managed to escape the ghetto and become part of the American mainstream. After the Washington Post ran its series of acclaimed articles, Rosa Lee made several public appearances, in the hopes that by telling her story, 'I can help somebody not follow in my footsteps.'
In the bestselling tradition of Jonathan Kozol's Death at an Early Age, Rosa Lee is a haunting, unforgettable portrayal of the plight of the black urban poor."