The Wives of Los Alamos (Paperback)

By Tarashea Nesbit

Bloomsbury USA, 9781620405048, 240pp.

Publication Date: December 30, 2014

March 2014 Indie Next List

“In 1943, families of mathematicians and scientists, escorted under high security, move to The Hill - Los Alamos, New Mexico. Not knowing where they're going or why, these wives from all over the world cut their ties with friends and relatives to live in isolation, without telephones or uncensored mail. Based on the history of the development of 'The Gadget' - the atomic bomb - this novel reads like a collective diary of hundreds of wives. This unique first-person plural recounting of real events culminates with varied reactions to the use of this powerful weapon on the people of Japan. Nesbit portrays these delicate issues brilliantly!”
— Jane Morck, Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park, WA
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Description

Winner of New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards (2014) in Fiction (historical fiction) and Best Book/New Mexico categories

They arrived in New Mexico ready for adventure, or at least resigned to it. But hope quickly turned to hardship as they were forced to adapt to a rugged military town where everything was a secret--including what their husbands were doing at the lab. Though they were strangers, they joined together--adapting to a landscape as fierce as it was absorbing, full of the banalities of everyday life and the drama of scientific discovery.

While the bomb was being invented, babies were born, friendships were forged, children grew up, and Los Alamos gradually transformed into a real community: one that was strained by the words they couldn't say out loud or in letters, and by the freedom they didn't have. But the end of the war would bring even bigger challenges, as the scientists and their families struggled with the burden of their contribution to the most destructive force in the history of mankind.

The Wives of Los Alamos is a testament to a remarkable group of real-life women and an exploration of a crucial, largely unconsidered aspect of one of the most monumental research projects in modern history.

Mountains and Plains bestseller list
Denver Post bestseller list
Mid-Atlantic bestseller list



About the Author

TaraShea Nesbit was born in Dayton, Ohio, one of the lesser-known Manhattan Project locations. Her writing has been featured in the Iowa Review, Quarterly West, Hayden's Ferry Review, and other literary journals. She teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Denver and is the nonfiction editor of Better: Culture & Lit. A graduate of the M.F.A. program at Washington University, Nesbit is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in literature and creative writing at the University of Denver.
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