• Rachel Penate

The Only Plane in the Sky by Garrett M. Graff

Updated: Apr 10


TITLE: The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11

AUTHOR: Garrett M. Graff

PUBLISHER: Simon & Schuster

YR PUBLISHED: 2019

GENRE: Historical Non Fiction

STARS: ★★★★★


SUMMARY: “A powerful tribute to the courage of everyday Americans and an essential addition to the literature of 9/11, The Only Plane in the Sky weaves together the unforgettable personal experiences of the men and women who found themselves caught at the center of an unprecedented human drama. The result is a unique, profound, and searing exploration of humanity on a day that changed the course of history, and all of our lives.” (Adapted from Goodreads)


REVIEW: I really, honestly, don’t have words for this book. It feels impossible to try to adequately talk about this profoundly important and deeply intimate account of 9/11.


I was just an 11-yr-old kid in Wisconsin when the Twin Towers came tumbling down, but the images that played on television that day are forever imprinted in my mind.


★The Only Plane in the Sky is an incredible achievement in historical documentation. ★ Not only is it brilliantly curated, it is one of a kind in its depth and breadth of witness. From the towers to the pentagon to Air Force One to the general population, there is just so much memory encapsulated in these 513 pages. I honestly don’t know if a book will ever move me to this magnitude again.


Overall, an incredibly important work of history. Garrett Graff should be very, very proud! If you do find it in you to digest these recollections of 9/11, I recommend listening to this one on audiobook. It is incredibly well narrated and produced with a full cast.


SENSITIVITY WARNINGS: This is definitely a book to read when you are in a good mental state of mind. I don’t recommend reading this one until you can handle extreme accounts of tragedy and grieving.

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