Years in the making, this spellbinding, heartbreaking, and ultimately uplifting narrative is an unforgettable portrait of 9/11
This is a 9/11 book like no other. Masterfully weaving together multiple strands of the events in New York, at the Pentagon, and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Fall and Rise is a mesmerizing, minute-by-minute account of that terrible day.
In the days and months after 9/11, Mitchell Zuckoff, then a reporter for the Boston Globe, wrote about the attacks, the victims, and their families. After further years of meticulous reporting, Zuckoff has filled Fall and Rise with voices of the lost and the saved. The result is an utterly gripping book, filled with intimate stories of people most affected by the events of that sunny Tuesday in September: an out-of-work actor stuck in an elevator in the North Tower of the World Trade Center; the heroes aboard Flight 93 deciding to take action; a veteran trapped in the inferno in the Pentagon; the fire chief among the first on the scene in sleepy Shanksville; a team of firefighters racing to save an injured woman and themselves; and the men, women, and children flying across country to see loved ones or for work who suddenly faced terrorists bent on murder.
Fall and Rise will open new avenues of understanding for everyone who thinks they know the story of 9/11, bringing to life—and in some cases, bringing back to life—the extraordinary ordinary people who experienced the worst day in modern American history.
Destined to be a classic, Fall and Rise will move, shock, inspire, and fill hearts with love and admiration for the human spirit as it triumphs in the face of horrifying events.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Journalist Mitchell Zuckoff reframes one of American history’s darkest days, using hundreds of interviews with survivors to provide a human-size perspective on the September 11, 2001 terror attacks. Zuckoff’s detailed reporting lays out the horrific events of that day and the ominous missed signals of the preceding months. But his real focus is the ordinary people whose lives were irrevocably changed that day—whether through acts of extraordinary bravery or unimaginable loss. These stories come together to make Fall and Rise the most intimate, humane account of 9/11 that we’ve ever read.
The horror and heroism of 9/11 are brought to life in this panoramic history. Boston University journalism professor Zuckoff, who covered the attacks for the Boston Globe, traces the day's events through the stories of dozens of people who experienced them: the hijackers as they put the finishing touches on their plot and set it in motion; the hijacked aircrew and passengers stunned by the unfolding nightmare; the air-traffic controllers, FAA officials, and military officers who struggled to piece together what was happening in the skies (Zuckoff shows how miscommunication delayed crucial measures that might have saved lives); workers in the World Trade Center and the Pentagon as they scrambled to escape from the growing infernos; and the firefighters who risked their lives to rescue them. Zuckoff draws skillfully on interviews with survivors, family reminiscences, audio documents (including farewell phone calls from doomed victims), tapes from the cockpit of United Flight 93 where passengers fought to take the plane back from the hijackers, and forlorn notes one reading "84th floor. West office. 12 people trapped" drifted down from a tower to flesh out the violence, chaos, and occasional moments of grace. The result is a superb, harrowing retelling of this most dramatic of stories.