The book focuses on the timeframe from when Franklin Roosevelt died to when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. The book weaves together four different storylines: Harry Truman becoming president; the pilots who flew the missions to drop the bombs; the scientists building the bombs; and, a Japanese girl living in Hiroshima.
Wednesday, July 01, 2020
Countdown 1945: The Extraordinary Story of the Atomic Bomb and the 116 Days That Changed the World
My book for July was Countdown 1945: The Extraordinary Story of the Atomic Bomb and the 116 Days That Changed the World by Chris Wallace. I saw Chris Wallace talk about the book on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. Although not specifically a presidential biography, It fits into my long term project to read books about all of the presidents.
Drinking with Sam Rayburn in his hideaway in the House when he gets the call to hurry back to the White House, Truman is a central character. The story follows Truman as he learns about the bomb and agonizes about using it. There is a section about the Potsdam Conference when he shares with Stalin and Churchill the existence of the bomb.
This is a compeling story. I recommend the book.