Bomb: The Race to Build--And Steal--The World's Most Dangerous Weapon (Newbery Honor Book) Hardcover – 4 Sep 2012
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"This superb and exciting work of nonfiction would be a fine tonic for any jaded adolescent who thinks history is 'boring.' It's also an excellent primer for adult readers who may have forgotten, or never learned, the remarkable story of how nuclear weaponry was first imagined, invented and deployed--and of how an international arms race began well before there was such a thing as an atomic bomb." --"The Wall Street Journal"* "This is edge-of-the seat material that will resonate with YAs who clamor for true spy stories, and it will undoubtedly engross a cross-market audience of adults who dozed through the World War II unit in high school." --"BCCB," starred review* "Reads like an international spy thriller, and that's the beauty of it." --"School Library Journal," starred review* "A must-read." --"Publishers Weekly," starred review* "A superb tale of an era and an effort that forever changed our world." --"Kirkus Reviews," starred review* "Sheinkin here maintains the pace of a thriller without betraying history . . . or skipping over the science." --"The Horn Book Review," starred review"[A] complicated thriller that intercuts action with the deftness of a Hollywood blockbuster." --"Booklist" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Steve Sheinkin is the award-winning author of several fascinating books on American history, including "The Notorious Benedict Arnold," which won the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults and the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for nonfiction. His recent book "Bomb" was a Newbery Honor Book, " "National Book Award finalist, and winner of the Sibert Award as well as the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults. He lives in Saratoga Springs, NY. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
This keeps the science light and easily understandable (I now know the difference between nuclear fission and fusion, and between the different types of uranium and plutonium!) and concentrates on the political manoeuvring, the spies, the scientists, the sabotage, and the kidnapping of `brains'.
Actual witness accounts are used for some stunning moments: the first testing of an atomic bomb in the desert of New Mexico; the dropping of the first bomb on Hiroshima - and the incredibly mixed emotions of pride and horror of everyone involved from the pilot of the Enola Gay to the scientists who had seen the study of the physics they loved turned into the deadliest weapon in history.
This is being marketed as a YA book but there's nothing childish or patronising about it, and the author has included an excellent bibliography and sources list for follow-up reading. I found this thrilling and terrifying in equal measure - recommended.
(This review is from an ARC courtesy of the publisher)
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The race to build the first atom bomb involves several stories: the Los Alamos scientists, the Soviet spies stealing our secrets, and the Norwegian saboteurs stopping the Germans. I have read several books about each of these stories; this is the first book that ties them all together. It is well-written, and reads like a thriller in the way it flips from one threadline to another, keeping you turn the page. My only quibble is that the footnotes do not give the page number of the source, but then this is a book for the general reader, not for historians like myself. It is an introduction to an important and fascinating topic, and it does the job well. After you read this book, you may well want to read more.
If I make may an unusual compliment: even though I am very familiar with what this book talks about, I wasn't in the least bit impatient as I read this book. A joy to read.
he accomplishe's this purpose by taking more time to explain people. For example, "Harry gold had been living a double life for seventeen years. Overwhelmed by exhaustion" (Sheinkin 3). Also with, "Oppenheimer was a tough critic. 'A repulsively good little boy,' he said of himself. 'My lilife as a child did not prepare me for the fact that the world is full of cruel and bitter things.' " (Sheinkin 8).
This book just works, and it works good for the soul purpose of loading your mind with interesting information of the invention of this deadly weapon. Personally it is hard for me to like a book. As a teenager who is, by no means, in love with literature I found my self clinging to this book. I suppose I liked Sheinkin's style of teaching. You know how you can read read a book and completely forgot what has been happening for the last ten minutes? Well, that doesn't happen here. As for dislikes on this book... I have none. I absolutely loved every aspect of this book.
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