Fall and Rise/ The Story of 9/11

The story of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, with good reason, will never fade.  Mitchell Zuckoff’s current retrospective on 9/11 and its aftermath, Fall and Rise The Story of 9/11, only adds to the relevance of the recent hard fought congressional battle to extend first responder benefits.

The book is chronologically presented and easy to read, benefiting from Zuckoff’s having covered 9/11 as a reporter for the Boston Globe.  The prism of passed time adds to Zuckoff’s perspective and research.  It is not incidental to his resume that he was a member of the Boston Globe’s Spotlight Team. He also wrote the NYT bestseller 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi.  I recommend Fall and Rise, especially for those too young to have remembered the event as it unfolded.  The book, as well as any can, presents a cohesive story of the tragedy and the impact upon those who lived and died on that day.



Mitchell Zuckoff’s new book Frozen in Time ranks  among the best non-fiction works of survival and rescue during the Second World War. Furthermore,  the book  is testament to the strength of the human spirit.


Frozen in Time details the crash of a B-17 Flying Fortress  on the Greenland ice cap, while itself on a mission to find the crew of another downed plane. A Grumman Duck  amphibious rescue plane also vanishes, adding to the complexity of what becomes an epic tragedy.

Imagine, 9-men huddled in the tail section of a broken B-17 bomber, who during the first month on the ice, had no verification that anyone knew where they were!  They survived 148 days of 50-degree below zero weather with 100 mile per hour winds threatening to dump their makeshift shelter into bottomless crevasse only inches away. Then came the disappointment of many failed rescue attempts and further loss of life by those who tried to save them.  Zuckoff unveils a determination and fortitude of the human spirit that defies comprehension.

The dimension of this gripping survival story is enhanced with the telling of the parallel expedition that took place in 2012, to find the wreckage of the U.S. Coast Guard Grumman Duck rescue plane and to return home the remains of the heroic crew.




There are four other books of this genre and caliber that I highly recommend reading:

The Endurance, by Caroline Alexander, Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition

The Terrible Hours, by Peter Mass, The Greatest Submarine Rescue in History

In Harm’s Way, by Doug Stanton, The Sinking of the USS INDIANAPOLIS

FLYBOYS, by James Bradley, The Tragedy of Chichi Jima

Lost in Shangri-La, by Mitchell Zuckoff, A True Story of Survival and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II.