The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright
Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11

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Synopsis

UPDATED AND WITH A NEW AFTERWORD

National Book Award Finalist

A Time, Newsweek, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, and New York Times Book Review Best Book of the Year

A gripping narrative that spans five decades, The Looming Tower explains in unprecedented detail the growth of Islamic fundamentalism, the rise of al-Qaeda, and the intelligence failures that culminated in the attacks on the World Trade Center. Lawrence Wright re-creates firsthand the transformation of Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri from incompetent and idealistic soldiers in Afghanistan to leaders of the most successful terrorist group in history. He follows FBI counterterrorism chief John O’Neill as he uncovers the emerging danger from al-Qaeda in the 1990s and struggles to track this new threat. Packed with new information and a deep historical perspective, The Looming Tower is the definitive history of the long road to September 11.




From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Lawrence Wright

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Lawrence Wright graduated from Tulane University and spent two years teaching at the American University in Cairo, Egypt. He is a staff writer for The New Yorker and a fellow at the Center on Law and Security at New York University School of Law. The author of five works of nonfiction, including the the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Looming Tower, he has also written a novel, God's Favorite, and was cowriter of the movie The Siege. He and his wife are longtime residents of Austin, Texas.














Author Residence: Austin, Texas
 
Published August 8, 2006 by Vintage. 480 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Travel, Literature & Fiction, War. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Looming Tower

Kirkus Reviews

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A comprehensive and compelling account of the events preceding and causing 9/11, with a tight focus on al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden and on the men who were pursuing him before the attacks.

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The New York Times

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Lawrence Wright’s remarkable new book gives the reader a searing view of the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001, a view that is at once wrenchingly intimate and boldly sweeping.

Aug 01 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The New York Times

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agent who worked so frantically to stop Osama bin Laden, only to perish in the attack on the World Trade Center, is worth the price of the book alone.

Aug 06 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The New York Times

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Lawrence Wright offers a detailed, heart-stopping account of the events leading up to 9/11, carried along by villains and heroes that only a crime novelist could dream up.

Aug 06 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The New York Times

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Lawrence Wright’s remarkable new book gives the reader a searing view of the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001, a view that is at once wrenchingly intimate and boldly sweeping.

Aug 01 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The Guardian

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The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright Allen Lane £20, pp480 Al-Qaeda has become a virtual phenomenon.

Sep 10 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The Guardian

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The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda's Road to 9/11 by Lawrence Wright 480pp, Allen Lane, £20 Forty years ago, in a scathing and prescient manifesto against consumer capitalism and celebrity culture entitled The Society of the Spectacle, the French situationist philosopher Guy Debord described everyday...

Sep 09 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

Publishers Weekly

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Less wealthy than believed, bin Laden's talents lay in organization and PR, Wright asserts.

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BC Books

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The saga of Osama — from his early days of fighting against the Soviets in Afghanistan where he puzzlingly fell ill every time there was an attack, to his breakdown of relations with the Saudi royalty, to his exile in Sudan where he spent some of the most satisfying and sedentary years of his lif...

Sep 03 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

BC Books

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Continued on the next page Page 1 — Page 2 — Page 3 — Page 4

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BC Books

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Many years later, an Afghan war veteran named Osama bin Laden, addressing the evening worshippers in the bin Laden family mosque in Jeddah, invoked Gandhi.

Sep 03 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

Book Reporter

Wright never states it outright, but it is a clear subtext of his masterly and important book.

Aug 21 2007 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

Christian Science Monitor

The author traces the philosophy adopted by bin Laden and Al Qaeda to Sayyid Qutb, a brilliant dissident Egyptian scholar.

Mar 15 2009 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

Bookmarks Magazine

Michiko Kakutani NY Times Book Review 4 of 5 Stars "The Looming Tower is not just a detailed, heart-stopping account of the events leading up to 9/11, written with style and verve, and carried along by villains and heroes that only a crime novelist could dream up.

Aug 22 2007 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The Atlantic

And so her students did great things: They took their younger siblings to soccer, made dinner for their family—one kid even got herself out of bed and to the bus stop on her own, no prodding, after years of making her mom beg her to get up and get going.

Oct 09 2014 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

The Atlantic

During that time, he strove to keep her to himself while denying her the marriage that she so anxiously wanted, betrayed her with other women sexually, and eagerly helped Kingsley Amis to employ her as the model for the frigid, drab, and hysterical Margaret Peel in Lucky Jim.

May 13 2015 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

Bloomberg

- Bloomberg Bloomberg.com Businessweek.com Bloomberg TV Premium Professional Products Bloomberg Anywhere Bloomberg Tradebook Industry Products Bloomberg Briefs Bloomberg Government Bloomberg Law Bloomberg BNA Bloomberg New Energy Finance Bloomberg Sp...

Aug 14 2006 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

Campus Watch

Bergner, the State Department's assistant secretary for legislative affairs, wrote in a letter to Sen. Jon Kyl , R-Ariz., in January – 18 months after the U.S.-Saudi agreement – that the State Department planned to monitor the progress of the Saudis in upholding their July 2006 vows to "eliminate...

Jun 25 2008 | Read Full Review of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda a...

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