Wake-Up Call: The Political Education of a 9/11 Widow

by Kristen Breitweiser
Wake-Up Call: The Political Education of a 9/11 Widow
Sat Dec 2, 2006 21:30

Wake-Up Call: The Political Education of a 9/11 Widow (Hardcover)
by Kristen Breitweiser


Editorial Reviews
From Publishers Weekly
In September of 2001, Breitweiser had a tumor in her breast, was suffering from colitis and lupus and recovering from the death of her mother from cancer of the mouth. Then terrorists crashed into the World Trade Center, killing her beloved husband and hundreds more. Devastated, the New Jersey stay-at-home mom became an activist, channeling her pain and rage into learning everything she could about the U.S. government's role in the attacks—an excruciating journey that is carefully chronicled in this emotionally charged memoir. Colloquial in tone, Breitweiser recounts how she and three widow pals—her fellow "Jersey Girls"—began lobbying the government to establish an independent 9/11 commission to explore all that went wrong that day. With narrative ease, the author, who has a law degree, breaks down complex arguments and political theories: one chapter is dedicated to a single footnote from The 9/11 Investigations, while another segment explains why negligence is cheaper than prevention for airlines and governments. But in episodes where she mouths off to Henry Kissinger and campaigns for the "awkward" John Kerry, her frustration palpably grows. Though not the most elegant storyteller, Breitweiser has produced a touching account of her history and ongoing mission that's bound to achieve prominence thanks to Ann Coulter's recent attacks on the author. (Sept.)
Copyright Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist
Breitweiser, whose husband perished in the South Tower of the World Trade Center on September 11, describes in searing, intimate detail the tragic events of that morning and the following days. As she suddenly morphed from wife into widow, her initial confusion was transformed into blind, futile rage. A few months later, she joined forces with several other 9/11 widows; fueled by anger and energized by a zealous sense of mission, these women were determined not only to survive but also to get to the bottom of what happened in order to "make sure someone is held responsible so that nobody else ever has to walk in our shoes." Breitweiser's odyssey from wife and mother to political activist and grassroots organizer makes for inspirational reading and doubles as a sharp rejoinder to Ann Coulter's callous comments about 9/11 widows in her recently published diatribe, Godless: The Church of Liberalism. This heartfelt memoir will resonate with most Americans regardless of their political affiliations and serve as a reminder to many that there is still work to be done and action to be taken. Margaret Flanagan
Copyright American Library Association. All rights reserved

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