August 2, 2013

The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan

The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan is the real historical account of the women of Oak Ridge, Tennessee during World War II. It was a home to 75,000 people who worked secretly on the project, not even knowing what they were working on for the government. Read about this important and sadly forgotten part of American history in this book.

Book Description
At the height of World War II, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, was home to 75,000 residents, consuming more electricity than New York City. But to most of the world, the town did not exist. Thousands of civilians—many of them young women from small towns across the South—were recruited to this secret city, enticed by solid wages and the promise of war-ending work. Kept very much in the dark, few would ever guess the true nature of the tasks they performed each day in the hulking factories in the middle of the Appalachian Mountains. That is, until the end of the war—when Oak Ridge’s secret was revealed.

Drawing on the voices of the women who lived it—women who are now in their eighties and nineties—The Girls of Atomic City rescues a remarkable, forgotten chapter of American history from obscurity. Denise Kiernan captures the spirit of the times through these women: their pluck, their desire to contribute, and their enduring courage.” – The Girls of Atomic City

My Thoughts
The Girls of Atomic City is a history lesson that is interesting, memorable, and shows a part of America’s past that I never knew happened until I read this book. It is extremely well researched and executed to make this a fascinating book that I couldn’t put down.

I really enjoyed how this story was told through the memories of the women who worked in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, during the time it was in use during World War II. This made it more readable and personal. The nine women featured in the book represent the thousands that worked there, but their stories are the ones heard, and helped to bring this part of history back to life.

This is a book that all women should read. It represents what some women were doing during World War II, but shows how women were strong leaders and helped to fight the war, too. I enjoyed reading this very much, and will probably read it again in the future. I highly recommend it.

* Thank you to the publisher of The Girls of Atomic City, Touchstone, for providing me with a copy of this book for review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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