A selection of new titles shine a light on little-known aspects of the events of Sept. 11, 2001.

The Lives They Saved

Douglas Keeney. Lyons, Aug.

When the towers came down, most New Yorkers fled uptown on foot; car traffic was jammed bumper-to-bumper and the subways were stopped underground. But 300,000 people were evacuated from Battery Park on ferries, merchant mariner ships, and tugboats. Keeney’s story collects photographs and oral histories to explore this rarely told chapter of the 9/11 story.

On That Day

William M. Arkin. PublicAffairs, Aug.

Political commentator Arkin, author of The Generals Have No Clothes (“an impassioned takedown of the national security establishment,” per PW), here builds a minute-by-minute timeline of the events of 9/11, and the government and military’s shock, disbelief, and scramble to respond. Civilians on the ground, military forces, city and federal governments, and air traffic control systems all tried to make sense of what was happening and usher survivors to safety. Arkin’s reconstruction collects what went right and what went very wrong.


Some Kids Left Behind

Lila Nordstrom. Apollo, Aug.

On 9/11, Nordstrom, then a student at Stuyvesant High School in New York City, watched the towers fall from her downtown classroom window. Classes started again less than a month later, and exposure to the dust and debris sickened many of her classmates. The memoir follows her founding of StuyHealth, an advocacy group representing the students, and her work with the Victim Compensation Fund.

Women’s Stories of 9/11

Christopher Hilton. History Press, Sept.

Many lives were changed irrevocably by 9/11, including those of the 11 women—some in South Asia, some in the West—journalist Hilton interviewed for this oral history. They include a firefighter’s widow in Brooklyn, a naval chief at the Pentagon, and a women’s rights activist just across the Afghan border in Peshawar, Pakistan.

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