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On the Bedside Table… Five Days at Memorial

UPDATE: I just finished the book, so I wanted to post a quick update. As a mother with a toddler, I found this book a little difficult to get through. Thank goodness there is an audio version available on, which allowed me to listen during my commute to work.

I found the first part very intriguing as it demonstrated how quickly life as we know it can disappear when the infrastructure we depend on crumbs during a disaster. The second portion of the book focuses more of the ramifications that the medical personal faced after the storm when called to answer for the decisions they made during their time in Memorial after Hurricane Katrina. I found this portion of the book to drag on just a little and this may have been because I was reading this book out of interest in the societal preparedness component. In that respect, the epilogue, which looked at what lessons where learned, was very interesting to me and worth the cover to cover read. Overall, it was a fair read and if you have some time, pick it up.

And on a side note, I just have to say that I found it extremely ironic that the ad roll for “Morning Joe Book Club” review was for GE’s #BrilliantMachines campaign, since so much of “Five Days at Memorial” is a lesson in what happens when all that “brilliance” goes offline.


After watching last week’s Daily Show with special guest Sheri Fink, I ordered “Five Days at Memorial”. This book investigates the happenings at Memorial Medical Center in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

I have read a few fictional books with similar “end of the world” scenarios about what happens when everything fails, but to read a real life account is a bit unsettling.

One aspect I found that brought up questions of preparedness in my own prepping was the component of elderly care and the care of those needing medical attention. How exactly would my family care for elderly family members that, even though don’t require constant medial care, still rely on medications and regular care from trained medical professionals?…

I am currently about halfway through the book, and would so far, recommend reading it.

Here’s the link to the the Daily Show interview if you want to check it out.

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