Rummanah Aasi
  If you are reluctant to pick up a nonfiction book in fear of being bored to tears, look no further than Steve Sheinkin's award winning book, Bomb: The Race to Build and Steal the World's Most Dangerous Weapon, as this book reads like a classic spy thriller which so happens to be a true story.

Description: In December of 1938, a chemist in a German laboratory made a shocking discovery: When placed next to radioactive material, a Uranium atom split in two. That simple discovery launched a scientific race that spanned 3 continents. In Great Britain and the United States, Soviet spies worked their way into the scientific community; in Norway, a commando force slipped behind enemy lines to attack German heavy-water manufacturing; and deep in the desert, one brilliant group of scientists was hidden away at a remote site at Los Alamos. This is the story of the plotting, the risk-taking, the deceit, and genius that created the world's most formidable weapon. This is the story of the atomic bomb.

Review: Bomb: The Race to Build and Steal the World's Most Dangerous Weapon weaves together tales of scientific and technological discovery, back-alley espionage, and wartime sabotage in a riveting account of the race to build the first atomic weapon. I found this book very hard to put down even though there is no big surprise on how this story ends. I was enraptured by the storytelling and how the famous and the infamous cast of characters such as Robert Oppenheimer and spy Harry Gold are brought to life in this book.
  Black and white portraits of key players appear in photo-montages that begin each of the book's four sections. The author pulls information from numerous sources to supply every chapter with quotations that swiftly move the narrative forward. Suspenseful play-by-play moments, particularly when focusing on intrigue and spies, will captivate the reader. Though I knew the story of the making of the bomb, I didn't realize how much intrigue and spying was involved. The epilogue also brings the reader up to speed on how the creation of the atom bomb doesn't just stop at the end of World War II, but also has consequences throughout other parts of history such as the arms race during the Cold War and the potential of nuclear war in volatile countries will give readers pause and goose bumps.
 Bomb: The Race to Build and Steal the World's Most Dangerous Weapon is a must-read book and definitely one of the best books I've read thus far this year. I highly recommend it to middle schoolers, teens, and adults especially if you enjoy the spy and thriller genres or if you are curious about history and science. There are lots of notes and biographical references found in the back of the book if you would like to learn more.

Rating: 5 stars

Words of Caution: There is some minor language and mature themes in the book. Recommended for strong Grade 7 readers and up.

If you like this book try: The Ultimate Weapon by Edward Sullivan, The Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages, The Wives of Los Alamos by TaraShea Nesbit
5 Responses
  1. I've been wanting to read this. I've pulled it several times and never managed to get to it. Now that I've read your review, I'm even more ready! Thanks!


  2. Oh this does sound fascinating. I am so intrigued by this era and I would love to know more about how the bomb came into being as I don't know that much. Thanks for sharing this one, I am going to hunt down a copy at my library :)


  3. Candace Says:

    I hadn't heard of this before, and never would have picked it up on my own but your review has me a little curious. I might have to get it for my son for when he's older.


  4. Summer school is finally over so I can get back to blogging and commenting :)

    I don't normally read non-fiction but this sounds very interesting, Rummanah. Since I don't know much about the background behind the building of the atomic bomb, I think it would be nice to learn a bit more.


  5. I completely overlooked this one, but I now I think it might be something I would really like. I'm glad to hear you were hooked! Great review, Rummanah.


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