The Atomic City Girls

The Atomic City Girls

Book - 2018
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In November 1944, eighteen-year-old June Walker boards an unmarked bus, destined for a city that doesn't officially exist. Oak Ridge, Tennessee has sprung up in a matter of months--a town of trailers and segregated houses, 24-hour cafeterias, and constant security checks. There, June joins hundreds of other young girls operating massive machines whose purpose is never explained. They know they are helping to win the war, but must ask no questions and reveal nothing to outsiders. The girls spend their evenings socializing and flirting with soldiers, scientists, and workmen at dances and movies, bowling alleys and canteens. June longs to know more about their top-secret assignment and begins an affair with Sam Cantor, the young Jewish physicist from New York who oversees the lab where she works and understands the end goal only too well, while her beautiful roommate Cici is on her own mission: to find a wealthy husband and escape her sharecropper roots. Across town, African-American construction worker Joe Brewer knows nothing of the government's plans, only that his new job pays enough to make it worth leaving his family behind, at least for now. But a breach in security will intertwine his fate with June's search for answers. When the bombing of Hiroshima brings the truth about Oak Ridge into devastating focus, June must confront her ideals about loyalty, patriotism, and war itself.
Publisher: New York, NY : William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2018]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780062666710
Branch Call Number: FIC BEARD 2018
Characteristics: 353 pages, 18 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm


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Nov 11, 2018

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Atomic City Girls. It is a work of fiction with some history of how the US Army worked on creating the atomic bomb first in WWII. How the war changed the life of the main character, June. She goes from being poorly educated to being knowledgable about Physics. Her inside information and personal transformation create an attention grabbing lesson in history, secrecy and personal relationships.

Nov 06, 2018

What a confusing novel! I picked up this book thinking that it would provide some insight and knowledge around the atomic bomb and World War II. Instead, what I got was a dumb love story and strange character rivalries. Even though this story builds around the town of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, the home of the atomic bomb, it focused less on that and more on just the relationships between the main characters. There was too much time wasted on character-building and too much detail given to mundane events that I often wondered if the author herself forgot what she was even writing about. If you thought about reading this book, don't waste you time.

Katherine_A Mar 13, 2018

For fans of The Wives of Los Alamos by TaraShea Nesbit, this title would be a great read alike. This story takes place during WWII at a different top secret location in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Both locations are working on the Manhattan project and towards the same goal.
I thought the characters were well developed and I enjoyed the multiple story lines.


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