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Richard Rhodes - The Making of the Atomic Bomb

This was recommended by a couple of people on the bulletin board.

I.I. Rabi, Nobel Laureate for Physics, 1944 writes,

"The Making of the Atomic Bomb is an epic worthy of Milton. Nowhere else have I seen the whole story put down with such elegance and gusto and in such revealing detail and simple language which carries the reader through wonderful and profound scientific discoveries and their application.

The great figures of the age, scientific, military, and political, come to life when confronted with the fateful and awesome decisions which faced them in this agonizing century. This great book dealing with the most profound problems of the 20th century can help us to apprehend the opportunities and pitfalls that face the world in the 21st."

From the publisher:
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, The National Book Award, and The National Book Critics Circle Award.

Here for the first time, in rich, human, political, and scientific detail, is the complete story of how the bomb was developed, from the turn-of-the-century discovery of the vast energy locked inside the atom to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan.

Few great discoveries have evolved so swiftly--or have been so misunderstood. From the theoretical discussions of nuclear energy to the bright glare of Trinity there was a span of hardly more than twenty-five years. What began as merely an interesting speculative problem in physics grew into the Manhattan Project, and then into the Bomb with frightening rapidity, while scientists known only to their peers--Szilard, Teller, Oppenheimer, Bohr, Meitner, Fermi, Lawrence, and von Neumann-stepped from their ivory towers into the limelight.

Richard Rhodes takes us on that journey step by step, minute by minute, and gives us the definitive story of man's most awesome discovery and invention. The Making of the Atomic Bomb has been compared in its sweep and importance to William L. Shirer's The Rise and Fail of the Third Reich. It is at once a narrative tour de force and a document as powerful as its subject.

"A stirring intellectual adventure... clear, fast-paced, and indispensable." -- Carl Sagan
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