The Looming Tower

Yesterday I finished a book about 9/11 called The Looming Tower. I practically cheered when I was done, it was so wonderfully, beautifully written and researched, a freaking work of art. Never mind that you will gain an incredible understanding of what happened (it starts at 1948 and ends a little after 9/11) but it’s un-put-downable and a great great read.

It was also very close to a book I once thought about writing. When I was working on my book about the NYPD’s cold case squad I saw how different law enforcement agencies work together (not well). It made me curious about how law enforcement agencies around the world work together. I wanted to find a case that involved as many different agencies as possible, both here and around the world, and then dramatically show what happens. But I decided I was not the right person for this book. I don’t fly, for one, so I could never get anywhere in the world quickly if needed.

This is that book, although it’s both broader and deeper than this one aspect. But 9/11 was the best possible case to illustrate what I wanted to illustrate. There was one line that just made me laugh (and inwardly cry). It’s about the CIA not giving information to the FBI. However, it must be said, the FBI is guilty of doing the same to the NYPD.

“Overvaluing information for its own sake, the agency was a black hole, emitting nothing that was not blasted out if by a force greater than gravity …”

God I wish I had written that.

Another shot from my Chinatown glasses expedition yesterday. Poor fishes. Nice colors, though.


Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

2 thoughts on “The Looming Tower

  1. That sounds like a great book, will have to read it. So true about different law enforcement agencies not working well together. My late husband used to say when the FBI showed up, their first words were, “We’re here to help you.” At which point a collective groan could be heard from the local cops!

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