The 747 that went up whole and came down in 876 pieces invaded every part of my life. My only consolation is that, without being able to turn around, she never saw the giant hole where the rest of the aircraft should have been. It was an oblong oval opening to the tumbling sky, bordered by torn cables, shredded aluminum aircraft skin, sheared beams, and spars, and accented with sparking severed wires. And I hope she couldn't comprehend what was actually happening if she lived long enough to ride this nearly three-mile-high, free-falling hell-ivator all the way down to the ocean's surface, and then sink to 140 feet below, where her body would wait to be recovered.
This is a TWA Flight 800 memoir told by author Mark L. Berry, a former TWA pilot whose fiancé Susanne was one of the 230 passengers and crew who died when that flight exploded at 13,760 feet off Long Island's southern shore. While primarily read by the author, 94 voice actors help bring the numerous people to life through a full-cast production (including small guest appearances by podcasters Scott Sigler, Seth Harwood, and Mike Bennett). The print and e-book versions contain lyric snippets from 34 original songs infused into their respective chapters, which grew to 41 in the two years this 348-page book was recorded and mixed—giving this audiobook its own soundtrack. The full songs can be heard on the author’s website.
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Amazing, tragic, sad and funny story all at once!
The story line itself is very personal, and tragic, but the life experiences that the author puts into words are written with such detail that you can feel as if you were along side with him. It is a very honest from the heart memoir.
The pilot chapters were my favorite to like. The other chapters were liked for their geographical references. No one wants to admit liking the sad chapters, but they pull you along through the story and connect it all together.
Mark L. Berry's performance is quirky, and he reads in a halting kind of way, but one can become addicted to him reading the Chapter # alone! I listened to the audio after reading the book, and was surprised at the depth of feeling and non-expression he put into the reading at the same time. The songs were an awesome addition.
My reaction to this book was that of hearing a journey through lives so connected. I was sad to not be reading/listening to it anymore when it was finished.