'Manifest' Season 1: Did Grant Finnegan's thriller book 'Flight 19' inspire the Jeff Rake show?

Both the TV series and the book deal with a missing flight, broken relations, and a massive jump in time


                            'Manifest' Season 1: Did Grant Finnegan's thriller book 'Flight 19' inspire the Jeff Rake show?

'Manifest' has never ceased to surprise us, and even after the NBC show reached the end of its first season, fans are still talking about it. This actually proves just how intense the mystery is when it comes to the show created by Jeff Rake. However, as the storyline of the show deals with Montego Air Flight 828, which left Hawaii in 2013 and reached New York in 2018, fans have come up with a mind-boggling discovery. Quite similar to Rake's plot is the book 'Flight 19' from author Grant Finnegan.

Finnegan's book deals with an extremely familiar plot. The official summary of the story reads as: "Pacific International Airlines Flight PI019 — Flight 19 — leaves Honolulu airport on a routine trip to Los Angeles on Thursday, January 17th, 2019. Two hours in, with 210 people on-board, the plane vanishes into thin air."

It continues: "An exhaustive search finds no trace of Flight 19, its passengers, or its crew, and the disappearance becomes modern aviation's greatest mystery. Five years later, an incoming plane asks for permission to enter LAX airspace. But there’s something unusual about this apparently routine request. It’s the missing Pacific International flight. What’s more, those on-board don’t yet know the year is now 2024. The last five years have passed them by in a matter of minutes. Flight 19 takes you through the months just after these people learn of their fate: their husbands and wives remarried, houses sold, jobs lost, possessions given away or disposed of, and loved ones dead and buried. This is a story that will touch everyone who cares about the life they have."

Grant Finnegan's book seems to be exactly similar to Rake's story. (Amazon)
Grant Finnegan's book seems to be exactly similar to Rake's story. (Amazon)

While the eerie similarity between Rake's show and Finnegan's book has left several fans baffled, a few took to Reddit to discuss it. One fan claimed, "The book overview sounds like an exact copy of 'Manifest'." However, that seems to be quite unusual since Rake has time and again stated that he came up with the idea of the show almost 10 years ago, and the show only established itself once the infamous incident involving Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 took place. However, Flight 19 in itself has quite a controversial story. Known to be the designation of a group of five Grumman TBM Avenger torpedo bombers, Flight 19 had disappeared under some mysterious circumstances over the Bermuda Triangle on December 5, 1945.

Fans are left baffled at the similarities between the show and the book. (IMDb)
Fans are left baffled at the similarities between the show and the book. (IMDb)

After losing contact during a United States Navy overwater navigation training flight from Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale, Florida, all 14 airmen on the flight were lost, as were all 13 crew members of a Martin PBM Mariner flying boat that subsequently launched from Naval Air Station Banana River to search for Flight 19. Steve Macgregor's book, 'The real story of Flight 19: The unsolved mystery of the disappearance of six US Navy aircraft in December 1945' takes a deeper look at the controversial incident. The book has stated, "More nonsense has been written about Flight 19 than almost any other aviation mystery. The loss of these aircraft has been blamed on everything from giant waterspouts to UFOs and even on the malign influence of the Bermuda Triangle."

MEA WorldWide (MEAWW) reached out to Rake himself for the clarification regarding the relation between the book and the series. Rake immediately denied fans' doubt if the series is based on the book, as he explained, "I’m not familiar with the book Flight 19 or with the author, so, no, Manifest is not related to it. That’s cool if we came up with similar ideas, but it’s just a coincidence.