Friday, September 10, 2010

Remembering...

It seems like yesterday that the whole country stood in horror watching as planes crashed into the twin towers in NYC and ultimately brought them crashing down.  In honor of those who worked there and in honor of those who died trying to save them I am posting information on one of the best books regarding 9/11 that I have read. Written by Pulitzer prize winning NY Times writer Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn.

Title: 102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers by Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn
Publisher:Times Books
384 Pages

Summary: 102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers, New York Times writers Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn vividly recreate the 102-minute span between the moment Flight 11 hit the first Twin Tower on the morning of September 11, 2001, and the moment the second tower collapsed, all from the perspective of those inside the buildings--the 12,000 who escaped, and the 2,749 who did not. It's becoming easier, years later, to forget the profound, visceral responses the Trade Center attacks evoked in the days and weeks following September 11. Using hundreds of interviews, countless transcripts of radio and phone communications, and exhaustive research, Dwyer and Flynn bring that flood of responses back--from heartbreak to bewilderment to fury. The randomness of death and survival is heartbreaking. One man, in the second tower, survived because he bolted from his desk the moment he heard the first plane hit; another, who stayed at his desk on the 97th floor, called his wife in his final moments to tell her to cancel a surprise trip he had planned. In many cases, the deaths of those who survived the initial attacks but were killed by the collapse of the towers were tragically avoidable. Building code exemptions, communication breakdowns between firefighters and police, and policies put in place by building management to keep everyone inside the towers in emergencies led, the authors argue, to the deaths of hundreds who might otherwise have survived.

Review: Drawn from thousands of radio transcripts, phone messages, e-mails and interviews with eyewitnesses, this 9/11 account comes from the perspective of those inside the World Trade Center from the moment the first plane hit at 8:46 a.m. to the collapse of the north tower at 10:28 a.m. This is one of the hardest and most memorable books I have read regarding what went on in the Towers after the planes hit.  The decisions people made, the miscommunication, and the heroic regular people who fought to help those who couldn't help themselves.  This book gave me chills, made me cry and made me proud of those whose lives were lost in the saving of others.  I know Jim Dwyer, I know how hard this book was for him to write as a native New Yorker.  I sat waited for the calls telling us he and his family were okay.  His daughters school was just blocks from ground zero. This book is very personal and I think could only have been written by someone who was so close to it.

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