Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story by Nora Raleigh Baskin captures the days before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 for four very different children: a girl whose mother travels to New York, a Muslim girl, a boy who lives in New York, and a boy who lives Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Two days before, all four children’s paths cross as they wait for their airplane in Chicago, and their paths cross once more when they all attend the Ground Zero memorial in New York City the following year, September 11, 2002.
Nine, Ten is not what I thought it would be when I thought of a September 11 story. First, the majority of the action happened in the two days before the attacks. Also, the main characters do not face anyone they know that died. Although the author says that not losing loved ones may not have been plausible (especially since two of the characters were in the city that day), I thought it felt more plausible. Although thousands died, many more thousands of people did not die. All of us who did not have anyone directly killed still must deal with the aftermath.
As anyone who was alive in 2001 would say, I will never forget where I was on September 11. It changed my perspective and my future. I loved how the majority of this book dealt with the days before that Tuesday. It built up the intensity so that we, knowing what was going to happen, could anticipate how their lives changed. I enjoyed how the end of the book came full circle and the children’s paths cross again as they are dealing with the aftermath.
I wish I could see a glimpse of them again another year after that. How has their story continued? They were that memorable to me.
Note: I received a digital copy of the book for review consideration.