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The 15:17 to Paris


The 15 17 to Paris
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The 15:17 to Paris

A. Skarlatos, A. Skarlatos, S. Stone & J. Stern

ISBN 9781610398190

On August 21, 2015, Ayoub al-Khazzani boarded the 15:17 train in Brussels, bound for Paris. Khazzani's mission was clear: he had an AK-47, a pistol, a box cutter, and enough ammunition to obliterate every passenger on the crowded train. Slipping into the bathroom in secret, he armed his weapons and prepared to launch his attack.

But when he emerged, he encountered something he hadn't anticipated: three Americans who refused to give in to fear.

Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, and Spencer Stone were childhood friends taking a vacation together. They had some relevant training: Stone was a martial arts enthusiast and airman first class in the US Air Force; Skarlatos was an active duty member of the Oregon National Guard; and not one of the three was afraid of a fight. But their decision to charge the gunman and overpower him, even as he turned first his gun then his knife on Stone, would never have happened if they hadn't had a lifetime of trust, support, and loyalty between them.

This book is the gripping, true story of a terrorist attack that would have killed more than 500 people if not for their actions, but it is also the story of three American boys and their friendship.

Using each hero's point of view in sequence, The 15:17 to Paris skilfully builds the drama of the attack, while weaving in the stories of the protagonists' lives, the friendship and loyalty that would come to define them, and the events that led them, inexorably, to that fateful day.

The 15:17 to Paris is an amazing true story of unparalleled, unexpected courage, and people coming together against fear rather than splitting apart.

It is a story of near tragedy averted by three young men who found the heroic unity and strength inside themselves that we all aspire to.

The Author

Anthony Sadler is a senior at Sacramento State University, majoring in Kinesiology and Athletic Training. He lives in Sacramento

Alek Skarlatos is a Specialist in the Oregon National Guard. A former student of Umpqua Community College, he was recently a finalist on season 21 of Dancing with the Stars. He lives in Roseburg, Oregon.

Spencer Stone is a Staff Sergeant in the United States Air Force. He lives in Sacramento.

Jeffrey E. Stern is the author of The Last Thousand: One School's Promise in a Nation at War. He has been named both a Pulitzer centre Fellow for Crisis Reporting, and a Graduate Fellow at the Stanford centre for International Conflict and Negotiation. Stern's reporting has appeared in Vanity Fair, Esquire, Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Newsweek, Slate, Time, and The New Republic. He has also been featured on PBS News Hour, NPR Morning Edition, and Morning Joe among others.                                






Reviews, News & Interviews:

A nuanced portrait...[the] up-close moments, flashbacks throughout the chronological memoir, make for a compelling ride...into the minds of our three heroes, all in their early 20s, and the chain of events that put them in position to stop what could have become one of the West's deadliest terrorist attacks...Washington Post

A captivating book... An exciting and gripping tale... Throughout the book, the reader will be struck repeatedly by the ordinariness of the three Americans. There was nothing in their past that suggested they would rise to the occasion so dramatically and successfully when needed. Their actions seem to prove the old adage that heroes are almost always ordinary people who, when confronted with great challenges, respond in an extraordinary fashion. How wonderful to be reminded that all of us have such a capacity. Christian Science Monitor

Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, and Spencer Stone demonstrated remarkable bravery and acted without regard for their own safety in order to subdue a heavily armed individual who appeared intent on causing mass casualties... [T]heir heroic actions may have prevented a far worse tragedy. President Barack Obama