On the morning of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, Mitchell Zuckoff was sitting at home in “fuzzy slippers mode,” on book leave from his job as a reporter at The Boston Globe. Shortly after the second plane hit the Twin Towers, he received a call from the Globe’s then-living arts editor Mark Morrow, whom he said had a simple message: “Your book leave is over.”
Zuckoff, now the Sumner M. Redstone Professor of Narrative Studies at Boston University’s College of Communication, went on to write the story that ran on the front page of the Globe the next day, as well as several other stories about the attacks for months afterward. This spring, he will release a new book, “Fall and Rise: The Story of 9/11.”
Billed by publisher HarperCollins as the “first comprehensive account” of Sept. 11, Zuckoff’s book will be a minute-by-minute retelling of the stories of 24 people whose lives were irrevocably changed that day, weaving together narratives from New York, Washington, D.C., and Shanksville, Pa.
Zuckoff, who also wrote the bestseller “13 Hours” and is married to Globe photographer Suzanne Kreiter, said that he was inspired to write “Fall and Rise” because he didn’t believe there was one single book that you could hand to someone who didn’t live through 9/11 that told the whole story of that day.
“We’ve got an entire generation with no personal memories of what happened,” Zuckoff said. “There are wonderful books out there about 9/11, but you’re not going to necessarily hand them a shelf full of books about the Towers and about the Pentagon and about Shanksville and about Flight 93.
“I thought if I could find a way to capture the entire episode, all of it, then it would really have value,” Zuckoff continued, “both for those of us who were there, who have the memories but they’re starting to fade, and also those people who need to know about how these events changed our world but have no way to connect to it.”
“Fall and Rise: The Story of 9/11″ will be released on April 30.