Monday, January 27, 2020

BOOK REVIEW: The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11 by Garrett M. Graff

The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11 by Garrett M. Graff is a riveting read. It’s a chronological account of the events of 9/11 told in bits and pieces by people who were there. Some of the voices are carried though the whole story and others appear only once or twice. The effect is to take you back to that awful day and give the event new immediacy.

The author does an amazing job pacing the story as the day progresses and the focus shifts from New York to the Pentagon to Pennsylvania and back again. We learn exactly what was going on at the Twin Towers,  in the bunkers, and on Air Force One–the confusion, disorganization, and fear, as well as remarkable dedication and bravery.

I wasn’t expecting to find this so readable or so important. No matter your perspective on where the country is now, it’s worthwhile reading and remembering what it was back then.