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What We’re Reading: Bomb

Post by Danielle Allison
Posted July 23, 2013 in NoveList Bookshelf, NoveList Plus

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Bomb: the Race to Build -- and Steal -- the World's Most Dangerous Weapon

by Steve Sheinkin

"'Lord,' Oppenheimer said to no one in particular, 'these affairs are hard on the heart.'"

As soon as I saw Bomb won the YALSA award for excellence in nonfiction, I immediately went to my county library's website and put it on hold. Am I glad I did! Sheinkin weaves together three very action-driven storylines:

  • the American quest to harness fission to make a bomb
  • the Allied quest to stop the Nazis from developing a bomb before the Allies could
  • the Russian mission to steal America's bomb plans
I'm not much of a nonfiction reader, but the narrative storyline and the images of key players at the start of each chapter kept me very interested. I also had never even heard about the Allied plot to destroy a heavy water factory in Norway, a storyline which was so suspenseful and interesting. Bomb was very engaging, and more in-depth about the development of the bomb than I'd ever read. This was a good introduction and was very fast-paced; the list of sources at the end was great and I've even added American Prometheus to my list of books to read. I also plan on reading Sheinkin's other books.

-- Danielle Allison, Cataloger