Falling, a review by Amy

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TJ Newman
Narrated by: Steven Weber
8 hours

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Riveting, pulse racing, and wholly consuming. Full of anguish and peril.

One decision can change your whole life. Not those hard decisions. The small ones. Taking an extra shift at work. Scheduling a repair man. One minute, life is full of coffee and kisses. The next is chaos like you’ve never imagined. But then the big decisions matter too. After taking that extra shift at work, Captain Hoffman faces the most difficult, ridiculous decision of his life: crash a plane full of innocent people or his family dies.

This audiobook came off hold over a busy weekend. Knowing my jam-packed schedule, I was only going to listen for a tiny bit while running a solo errand. But then I got home and couldn’t stop. I listened as I fixed lunches. I listened as we headed to the baseball game. I fought to find chances to listen all throughout the busy day. And later that night when my family “needed” things from me, I vowed to hide from them if necessary to finish the book! I was completely and totally captivated. I couldn’t pull myself away. I may never be able to fly cross country again. But I finished this book in one (busy) day.

Newman’s experience as a flight attendant gave this book depth and validity. The inside trade secrets, the mannerisms of the crew, and the overall goal of safety created an authentic atmosphere and enthralled me, a (pre-covid) frequent flyer.

This book is more than thrill though. The spotlight on American privilege is worth pondering. And the overall message Newman leaves us with is utterly important: keep learning, keep listening, and partner with others to do the necessary work.

I highly recommend the audiobook, narrated by Steven Weber. His depiction of the story was layered and nuanced. It created an extra level of anxiety and desperation within an already gripping book.

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