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America Is Under Attack: September 11, 2001: The Day the Towers Fell (Actual Times) Hardcover – August 16, 2011


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 1 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 840L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Flash Point; Actual Times edition (August 16, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596436948
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596436947
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #409,407 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Explaining the events of September 11, even 10 years afterward, is a task fraught with emotion. Brown's sturdy yet empathetic tone seems just right. (Publishers Weekly Online)

Illustrated on every spread with line-and-wash pictures that are forthright but never sensational, the book is superbly focused and completely honest. (Horn Book Magazine, Starred review)

Brown's compelling narrative chronologically recounts the morning's events in a tone both straightforward and compassionate, without resorting to sensationalism. (School Library Journal, starred review)

Brown's take…is a model of straightforward, earnest nonfiction writing that brings things to many an uncomfortable point--that cannot be avoided--without going too far. (Booklist)

Ten years' distance from the events allows Brown to include in his carefully crafted narrative some details missing in even the best of the children's titles released closer to September 11, 2001. (BCCB)

About the Author

Don Brown is the author and illustrator of many highly praised picture-book biographies and histories for children, most recently, He Has Shot the President. He lives on Long Island, New York.

Customer Reviews

A great learning tool!!
busy in PA
There is plenty of factual information and the human interest stories keep the book exciting.
Amazon Customer
I will read it to my own kids when I have them and I want to explain what happened that day.
Krista Moore

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Lisa on August 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent book about 9/11, written for kids ages 8-12 but appropriate for a wider range. The writing is clear and concise, with a straightforward feel. For the most part, the text is factual, rather than emotional. (Example: "With knives, pepper spray, and threats of bombs, they stormed the four airliner cockpits and wrested control away from the pilots. The jets were no longer just ordinary airplanes; they were weapons. The planes banked away from their planned flight paths and headed for their targets.)

A few real-life individuals are incorporated into the story, and quotes from people who were there are used throughout, which helps bring the events down to a human scale. The illustrations are beautiful -- watercolors, I believe -- and suggestive rather than highly detailed, which leads the reader to imagine what it might have been like to be there.

Although the Pentagon and the Pennsylvania crash site each get a 2-page spread, the Twin Towers are the main focus of the book. The Author's Note at the ends provides some additional information, and the book also includes a bibliography.

I think this book would make an excellent introduction to 9/11 for anyone too young to remember it, and also a good tool to begin discussions with children and younger teens. Perfect for use in school or at home. It brought tears to my eyes, and there is also much that is uplifting. Highly recommend.

(Note: I received a free advance reading copy of this book from the publisher at an American Library Association Annual Conference. I was not required to write a positive review. Thank you, Roaring Brook Press!)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 19, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was riveted by this account of the events of September 11. I can not wait to read it with my Grade 5 -6 ESL students (I'll post another review then). There is plenty of factual information and the human interest stories keep the book exciting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By a reader on September 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was just what I was looking for: A great way to present the facts of 9-11 to my 7th and 8th grade students. The book was short enough to read in a class period. 7th and 8th graders have some pretty intense questions and this book presented the facts in a way that led us to a wonderful, authentic discussion. I recommended it to all my teacher friends.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By JCM on October 6, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This story is written in such a manner that my students (4th grade) were able to grasp the concept of what really happened on 9/11. None of my students were born yet, so to them, it's surreal. Excellent read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Denessa Dudley on October 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love how this author takes the Times information about 9/11 and writes it for children to understand. It is in chronological order dipicting that day's events.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the best book so far I have found that explains the shocking and horrifing events of September 11, 2001, to kids. My students can't get enough information about this tragic and, to them, historical, event.

"The second hijacked jetliner had crashed through the 77th to 85th floors of the South Tower. Massive flames spewed from the tower. Wreckage rained down on the street. It was 9:03 AM, seventeen minutes after the strike on the North Tower. People now understood the earlier crash was not a freak accident but a deliberate attack.

How could anyone that witnessed that event ever forget that moment of realization?

The black ink and watercolor illustrations do justice in capturing the initial bewilderment and then determination of all those involved in the efforts to save lives. The author doesn't shy away from some of the communication breakdowns that caused many firefights to perish and describes many acts of heroism. The Pentagon crash is included, and the book ends at the collapse of the towers.

It doesn't get into WHY this happened, but gives enough information for most kids as to HOW it happened.
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By Heidi Grange on September 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
At the tenth anniversary of September 11, the question arises, how do we talk to children about what happened that day. The children I work with weren't even born when it happened. How do we help students understand the event without giving more detail than is appropriate. Don Brown has answered that question beautifully. He gives the basic string of events, but he also humanizes the story by quoting and telling the experiences of some of those who were there that day. The illustrations provide context without being graphic. The use of illustrations softens things a bit. Brown doesn't shy away from the things that went wrong, the chaos, the poor communication, etc. But he doesn't focus on that, he focuses on the sacrifices made by those who chose to risk and sometimes lose their lives to aide others and that is something always worth remembering.
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Format: Hardcover
Unforgettable. The author lets the story tell itself. There are acts of heroism as well as human failing (trapped people hear contradictory messages about evacuating or waiting for rescue; a tired office worker with bad feet refuses to continue downstairs, unwittingly saving herself and her rescuers, who are spared in a miraculous safe spot as the North Tower falls). The illustrations are heartbreaking. Children will be able to see their own parents in the figures of men and women trudging down staircases, prying an elevator door open, stumbling through smoky offices.
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