The General and the Genius by James  Kunetka audiobook

The General and the Genius: Groves and Oppenheimer—the Unlikely Partnership That Built the Atom Bomb

By James Kunetka
Read by Malcolm Hillgartner

Blackstone Publishing 9781621573388
14.08 Hours Unabridged
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Two ambitious men. One historic mission. With a blinding flash in the New Mexico desert in the summer of 1945, the world was changed forever. The bomb that ushered in the atomic age was the product of one of history’s most improbable partnerships. The General and the Genius reveals how two extraordinary men pulled off the greatest scientific feat of the twentieth century. Leslie Richard Groves of the Army Corps of Engineers, who had made his name by building the Pentagon in record time and under budget, was made overlord of the impossibly vast scientific enterprise known as the Manhattan Project. His mission: to beat the Nazis to the atomic bomb. So he turned to the nation’s preeminent theoretical physicist, J. Robert Oppenheimer—the chain-smoking, martini-quaffing son of wealthy Jewish immigrants, whose background was riddled with communist associations—Groves’ opposite in nearly every respect. In their three-year collaboration, the iron-willed general and the visionary scientist led a brilliant team in a secret mountaintop lab and built the fearsome weapons that ended the war but introduced the human race to unimaginable new terrors. And at the heart of this most momentous work of World War II is the story of two extraordinary men—the general and the genius.

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Summary

Summary

Two ambitious men. One historic mission.

With a blinding flash in the New Mexico desert in the summer of 1945, the world was changed forever. The bomb that ushered in the atomic age was the product of one of history’s most improbable partnerships. The General and the Genius reveals how two extraordinary men pulled off the greatest scientific feat of the twentieth century.

Leslie Richard Groves of the Army Corps of Engineers, who had made his name by building the Pentagon in record time and under budget, was made overlord of the impossibly vast scientific enterprise known as the Manhattan Project. His mission: to beat the Nazis to the atomic bomb. So he turned to the nation’s preeminent theoretical physicist, J. Robert Oppenheimer—the chain-smoking, martini-quaffing son of wealthy Jewish immigrants, whose background was riddled with communist associations—Groves’ opposite in nearly every respect. In their three-year collaboration, the iron-willed general and the visionary scientist led a brilliant team in a secret mountaintop lab and built the fearsome weapons that ended the war but introduced the human race to unimaginable new terrors. And at the heart of this most momentous work of World War II is the story of two extraordinary men—the general and the genius.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Kunetka highlights the unlikeliness of their positive relationship and attributes it to the qualities they shared…He also simplifies the physics to be understandable to lay readers. This is an entertaining and informative account of a time of great tension, great discovery, and great accomplishment.” Publishers Weekly
“A wonderful book that captures the creative tension at Los Alamos National Laboratory between 1943 and 1945. Verdict: This valuable dual biography of two exceptional men is a worthy addition to the ever-expanding literature on the development of the atomic bomb. Recommended for all collections.” Library Journal
“A fascinating look at one of the pivotal moments in both military and human history, and Kunetka deftly weaves together science, politics, and personal color to bring to life the extraordinary circumstances facing his subjects…An accessible and expansive look at the development of the atom bomb.” Kirkus Reviews
“Narrator Malcolm Hillgartner’s timbre, intonation, and clarity suggest those of a radio announcer from the early twentieth-century period in which these events take place…Hillgartner’s delivery is confident and direct as General Groves advocates a no-nonsense military approach and Professor Oppenheimer focuses on the minute scientific details.” AudioFile

Reviews

Reviews

by Paul 9/13/2017
Overall Performance
Narration
Story

Paint by the numbers history

While this book could have been an exploration of a fascinating relationship between two men and the momentous events in history, it is instead a dry retelling of facts that fails to capture much of anything.

The author purports to tell us the story of General Groves and Robert Oppenheimer, but it seems like there wasn't enough material or some other obstruction that caused this book to include details of phone number extensions and miscellanea that are of no consequence. The relationship between the two men is never really explored in any depth and the same goes for the other people who frequently take center stage of the book for short periods.

It feels like you could get the same story from reading the archives and papers of the Manhattan project as you could from this book. This was my first book on this subject, so it was enlightening, but it wasn't fascinating by any means.

I suspect there are much better titles on this topic out there and I can't say I would recommend this one.

Author

Author Bio: James Kunetka

Author Bio: James  Kunetka

James Kunetka is a bestselling novelist and the author of two previous books about Los Alamos and the Manhattan Project. As a consultant at Los Alamos with top-secret clearance, he evaluated classified documents in the archives for their historical value. He is retired from the University of Texas at Austin.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Biography & Autobiography
Runtime: 14.08
Audience: Adult
Language: English