Uranium: Book summary and reviews of Uranium by Tom Zoellner

Uranium

War, Energy and the Rock That Shaped the World

by Tom Zoellner

Uranium

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Book Summary

Uranium is a common element in the earth’s crust and the only naturally occurring mineral with the power to end all life on the planet. After World War II, it reshaped the global order—whoever could master uranium could master the world.

Marie Curie gave us hope that uranium would be a miracle panacea, but the Manhattan Project gave us reason to believe that civilization would end with apocalypse. Slave labor camps in Africa and Eastern Europe were built around mine shafts and America would knowingly send more than six hundred uranium miners to their graves in the name of national security.

Fortunes have been made from this yellow dirt; massive energy grids have been run from it. Fear of it panicked the American people into supporting a questionable war with Iraq and its specter threatens to create another conflict in Iran. Now, some are hoping it can help avoid a global warming catastrophe.

In Uranium, Tom Zoellner takes readers around the globe in this intriguing look at the mineral that can sustain life or destroy it.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. [A] fine piece of journalism...he superbly paints vivid pictures of uranium's impact." - Publishers Weekly.

"[An] intriguing investigation of the history of uranium development. ... Complete with exhaustive notes for academic and general readers, this is recommended for every library." - Library Journal.

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Author Information

Tom Zoellner Author Biography

© Paul Charest

Tom Zoellner is the author of five nonfiction books, including Train. He is the co-author of the New York Times bestselling book An Ordinary Man, and his book Uranium won the 2011 Science Writing Award from The American Institute of Physics. Tom has worked as a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle and The Arizona Republic, and as a contributing editor for Men's Health magazine.

He is now an associate professor of English at Chapman University. Tom lives in downtown Los Angeles and is a founding member of the journalism collective Deca.

Author Interview
Link to Tom Zoellner's Website

Name Pronunciation
Tom Zoellner: zollner

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