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Publisher's Summary

I have a bomb here and I would like you to sit by me.

That was the note handed to a stewardess by a mild-mannered passenger on a Northwest Orient flight in 1971. It was the start of one of the most astonishing whodunits in the history of American true crime: how one man extorted $200,000 from an airline, then parachuted into the wilds of the Pacific Northwest and into oblivion. D. B. Cooper's case has become the stuff of legend and obsessed and cursed his pursuers with everything from bankruptcy to suicidal despair. Now with Skyjack, journalist Geoffrey Gray delves into this unsolved mystery uncovering new leads in the infamous case.

Starting with a tip from a private investigator into a promising suspect (a Cooper lookalike, Northwest employee, and trained paratrooper), Gray is propelled into the murky depths of a decades-old mystery, conducting new interviews and obtaining a first-ever look at Cooper's FBI file. Beginning with a heartstopping and unprecedented recreation of the crime itself, from cabin to cockpit to tower, and uncanny portraits of characters who either chased Cooper or might have committed the crime, including Ralph Himmelsbach, the most dogged of FBI agents, who watched with horror as a criminal became a counter-culture folk hero who supposedly shafted the system.

With explosive new information and exclusive access to FBI files and forensic evidence, Skyjack reopens one of the great cold cases of the 20th century.

©2011 Geoffrey Gray (P)2011 Random House

What listeners say about Skyjack

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Joel D Offenberg
  • 06-10-11

Unsolved mystery with many layers...

Dan ("D.B.") Cooper was one of many individuals who hijacked a jetliner for ransom money or transportation to Cuba in the '60's and early '70's. Cooper's ransom demand included $200,000 and parachutes, and he apparently jumped out of the back stairs of the hijacked 727...and was never seen again (although a small number of the marked bills in his ransom payment were found). To this day, this remains the only unsolved airline hijacking in the US.

Geoffrey Gray's book relates 3 tales---the story of the actual D.B. Cooper hijacking and follow-up investigation...the stories of some of the leading suspects...and the story of Gray's personal search for Cooper, which brought him into contact with some, umm, interesting characters. I didn't realize this when I started this book, but apparently, like the JFK assassination, the D.B. Cooper hijacking remains fodder for speculation, conspiracy theory and some unusual ideas. Of course, the D.B. Cooper mystery remains a mystery and there are some oddities in the case, so speculation and conspiracy are not unlikely outcomes, and there is still almost $200K to find...maybe...

Skyjack is well written and seems to be a fairly balanced account of the D.B. Cooper story. The book is narrated by the author and he does a very good job with that as well.

PS - One reviewer complained that the audiobook seemed to have technical difficulties. I didn't find anything missing or hear any problems.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Azriel Knight
  • 19-07-21

3x longer than it needs to be.

this drags on for way too long and covers aspects of the story that is not necessary.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Robert Ritz
  • 23-04-18

Very Disappointing

Any additional comments?

To start with the author has a good voice for a story narration. That is the only positive I took from listening to this book. The book starts out with 30 mins to 1 hour discussing very detailed information about the passengers on the plane and the PI he speaks to and the location of their meeting. The overly descriptive nature of the first half hour or so made it very frustrating and hard to continue. Over the 8 hour book there is probably only 4 or less hours spent on the details of the hijacking and information about possible suspects. The authors detail about non pertinent aspects of each subject made it seem as though he did not have enough material about the case to write a book so he had to use a lot of filler.

Also, to mention as a few others have done in their reviews I think the book just ends midway through it literally ends mid sentence as he is speaking to the widow of a potential suspect.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • VC
  • 05-07-18

There Better Be a Sequel

Overall, this was a really well done book. It does not claim to know who D.B. Cooper is and fairly examines the strongest contenders, but it is left unfinished. I wish the Author would have added a few chapters narrowing down the suspects and finally picking one, even if it is only the Author's opinion. I will add this though, if there is not a sequel, the ending of the book is total bullshit. Also, I will add my opinion, that Joe, Duane's wife, if making her story up. I find it convenient that one: her husband cannot refute anything she says because he's dead; and two: he supposedly told her all of these things about D.B. Cooper which she claimed to know nothing about and didn't make the connection, then suddenly after his alleged confession, she becomes an expert on the case and sees connections everywhere. I personally find the transition suspicious and think it's her way to gain attention.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Kindle Customer
  • 10-08-11

Technical problem?

This books seems to end practically in the middle of a sentence. It seems to have a couple of chapters missing or something. I checked it out from the library and it had this problem, so I figured it was a library problem. So, I used my Audible account and it has the same problem. I certainly can't recommend the book.

7 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • brendan f kelly
  • 05-09-21

Huge disappointment.

OK... there isn't much known about D.B. Cooper. I understand how the author could find that a problem. He sets out to write a book, presumably THE book about the Cooper hijack. He finds the details of what happened. He finds details about the find of the ransom money. He talks to the flight crew and some of the people who investigated the case.

So far, so good. It's an exciting and fascinating story. I learned a lot from this part. Sadly, there isn't all that much to learn.
It seems likely , that D.B. survived the jump and buried (at least some) of the money near the river. It seems likely that that the Feds were searching to the east of where D.B. landed, which may explain why neither he nor his parachute were found. It is certain that D.B. meticulously planned this out; and if he had planned the skyjacking he MUST have had a plan for getting out of the woods and disappearing after he landed. It is not impossible that D.B. had someone waiting to pick him up.

That alone would have made for an interesting, but short, book.

Sadly, the author did not feel that way. This is NOT a book about D.B. Cooper. This is a book about Geoffrey Gray running around investigating, and falling for, ridiculous stores about D.B. Cooper. This is understandable, Mr. Cooper covered his tracks well. That being said, about 2/3 of this book is just long stories about... how do I put this nicely.... nut jobs that think they know who D.B. Cooper was... or think that they were related to D.B.

These nut job stories are a complete waste of time. NONE of these stories are credible, or even very interesting. After a while I was reminded of "Monty Python's Contractual Obligation Album". One suspects that somebody had burned through all the advance money, didn't have much to show for it, and that this was the result. I skipped over a lot of chapters.

I"m not sure if it was worth what I paid for it... but I KNOW it wasn't worth the time I invested in it.

The author does a great job of reading his work. His voice is pleasing and the inflection and emotion conveyed is genuine. He was likable, and I do hope that someday he does find out who D.B. Cooper was, and what happened to him. In the unlikely event that ever happens, I'll be interested in picking up a book about it... THIS however, is not that book.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 30-03-21

Excellent!

Truly a great read start to finish. Felt like I was on a noir style detective assignment investigating one of the most fascinating cases of all time. Highly recommend!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • 2nd Markets Corporation
  • 05-07-20

Surprisingly good

This was a surprisingly good audibook. It weaves an excellent first person narrative around the facts surrounding several of the prime suspects.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mark Broderick
  • 05-12-18

I Want the recipe!!!!!!

great book. great performance. kept me invested throughout. really really wanted more, but obviously that is the same with the DB Cooper case. The more you learn the further away from figuring it out you are. so I won't hold that against him. overall very entertaining read.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Walter Hartford
  • 27-01-18

Amazing🛩

I am obsessed with the DB Cooper case. I have been researching for 2 years. There was nothing I disliked about the book. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes mysteries, wants to research DB Cooper, or needs a lengthy book.