Version: Unabridged
Author: David Halberstam
Narrator: Mel Foster
Genres: Biography & Memoir
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Published In: May 2002
# of Units: 4 CDs
Length: 5 hours
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'In the firehouse the men not only live and eat with each other, they play sports together, go off to drink together, help repair one another's houses and, most importantly, share terrifying risks; their loyalties to each other must, by the demands of the dangers they face, be instinctive and absolute.' So writes David Halberstam, one of America's most distinguished reporters and historians in this stunning book about Engine 40, Ladder 35—one of the firehouses hardest hit in the aftermath of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Towers. On the morning of September 11, 2001, two rigs carrying 13 men set out from this firehouse, located on the west side of Manhattan near Lincoln Center; twelve of the men would never return.Firehouse takes us to the very epicenter of the tragedy. We watch the day unfold, the men called to duty, while their families wait anxiously for news of them. In addition we come to understand the culture of the firehouse itself, why gifted men do this and why in so many instances they are anxious to follow in their fathers' footsteps and serve in so dangerous a profession—why more than anything else, it is not just a job, but a calling as well.Firehouse is journalism-as-history at its best. The story of what happens when one small institution gets caught in an apocalyptic day, it is an audiobook that will move listeners as few others have in our time.

Reviews (2)

Written by Matt C on October 17th, 2017

  • Book Rating: 5/5

what a Great book i highly recommend this book for any fire fighter or any FDNY fire history buff


Written by Anonymous on May 9th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 1/5

This is a love letter to the deceased firemen of the 9/11 attack. In spite of the subject matter, it is horribly tedious and full of family facts. It does not/cannot tell you how they died, simply that they never came back and that they were very good men. Sorry about that. Tell me something I don't know.

Author Details

Author Details

Halberstam, David

"A journalist, historian, and biographer, David Halberstam brings his idiosyncratic and stylistic approach to heavy subjects: the Vietnam War (in 1972?s The Best and the Brightest); the shaping of American politics (in 1979?s The Powers That Be); the American economy?s relationship with the automobile industry (in 1986?s The Reckoning); and the civil rights movement (in 1998?s Freedom Riders).

His books are loaded with anecdotes, metaphors, suspense, and a narrative tone most writers reserve for fiction. The resulting books -- many of them huge bestsellers -- have given Halberstam heavyweight status (he won the Pulitzer for international reporting in 1964) and established him as an important commentator on American politics and power.

Halberstam is also known for his sports books. In The Breaks of the Game, which a critic for The New York Times called ?one of the best books I?ve ever read about American sports,? he took on professional basketball.

In The Amateurs, he examined the world of sculling; in Summer of ?49 and October 1964, he focused on two pivotal baseball events: the Boston Red Sox?s exasperating near victory over the New York Yankees for the 1949 pennant, and the 1964 season, when the Yankees lost the World Series to the St. Louis Cardinals. In 1999?s Playing for Keeps: Michael Jordan and the World He Made, Halberstam documented the making of a legend.

Always happy to extend his reach well beyond the subject at hand, Halberstam packs his books with social commentary as well as sports detail.

His writing routine is as strenuous and disciplined as that of any of the athletes he writes about. To sustain his steady output of extensively researched, almost-always-massive books, he allows no unscheduled interruptions: ?Most of us who have survived here [New York] after a number of years have ironclad work rules. Nothing interrupts us. Nothing,? he once wrote in The New York Times. ?We surface only at certain hours of the day.? "