City in the Sky

Glanz, James and Eric Lipton. City in the Sky: the Rise and Fall of the World Trade Center. New York: Henry Holt & Company, 2003.

Because City in the Sky was written just two short years after the horrific events of September 11, 2001 and the spectacular collapse of the World Trade Center towers it is easy to accuse Glanz and Lipton of jumping on the 9/11 bandwagon and capitalizing on an unprecedented tragedy. But, the events of 9/11/2001, specifically the seemingly impossible collapse of the towers doesn’t appear in the narrative until the very end – practically the last chapter. Instead, Glanz and Lipton start from the very beginning. They present the key players and historical events in a tightly written account of how the World Trade Center went from an ambitious idea to an iconic city in the sky. To read City in the Sky is to witness the conception, birth, life and ultimate death of a New York City and world icon. Just like the Rockefeller ancestors before him, David Rockefeller harnessed his ambition and went head to head with shop keepers, politicians and naysayers to build an architectural masterpiece.

Reason read: September 11th, 2001. Need I say more?

As an aside – I had to ask my cousin for clarification on this since I saw the name “Boody” several times in the index. He confirmed that my father’s second cousin was Irving Rickerson Boody. Rick’s father was Irving. The connection to the World Trade Center? Irving (senior) founded the first company to occupy the World Trade Center. Hmmmm.

Quotes that stuck with me, “But common sense does not always prevail in New york” (p 47).

Book trivia: City in the Sky includes some great photos, including one of the directory for the WTC. Boody was on the 11th floor in suite # 1103.

Authors fact: Glanz and Lipton both worked for the New York Times at the time City in the Sky was published.

BookLust Twist: from More Book Lust in the chapter called “Building Blocks” (p 37).

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