The Green Glass Sea, by Ellen Klages

Four stars, read May 2011.

I don’t think I’ve ever read anything about the Manhattan Project before, and the history involved was really fascinating; besides that, the characters are well-written and very likeable, and the story—not just the historical story, but the parts of the plot that are fiction—is easy to get engaged in. This was a truly lovely book.

Dewey and Suze are the two main characters; both are young girls who live at Los Alamos, where their scientist parents are working on something they know only as “the gadget” (which the reader knows is the atomic bomb). Dewey is a very clever girl who’s fascinated by mechanics and building things. Suze reads comic books and wants to be friends with the girly girls, but doesn’t fit in with them because she’s too adventurous. I don’t want to tell you any more about the story, so I will just say that it was done very well, and I really liked how all the elements—the families, the girls’ relationships, the war—came together.

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