The Berlin Project

The Berlin Project

A Novel

Book - 2017
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A fictional "alternate history of the creation of the atom bomb that explores what could have happened if the bomb was ready to be used by June 6, 1944"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Saga Press, [2017]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781481487641
9781481487665
9781481487658
Characteristics: 466 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm

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s
simpatico
May 19, 2018

This is an alternative history so a novel built around "what ifs". What if the bomb development was not delayed by struggles to separate U-235 from U-238? What if the bomb was available a year earlier to be used in the European theatre? What if the H-bomb was kept from being developed? And so on.
The physics and the early history is accurate and the pace is steady. Real persons are included in the story along with their personal quirks. Not a James Bond story by any stretch so it's not a page turner.
For the definitive history see Richard Rhode's "The making of the atomic bomb". For a devastating look at USA's use and abuse of strategic use of atomic weapons see the recent (2017) Daniel Ellsberg book, "The Doomsday Machine".

a
Astraeus
Sep 11, 2017

A medium-paced but richly detailed novel depicting a world where the development of the atomic bomb occurred one year earlier, with the resulting decision to use it against Germany in an effort to end the European war and spare millions of lives. The book's focus on the scientific development of the bomb, as opposed to being more action-oriented, might turn off some readers, but the personal struggles of the main character, combined with the surprising yet plausible twists of the plot will keep the reader entertained, and wondering if how our world would exist today if the atomic bomb had been used to try and bring down Hitler's regime.

m
mammothhawk229e
May 20, 2017

Great alternative steady paced history book with pictures & diagrams on centrifuge technology.
This key diverging point that Udey & Cohen get private funding to centrifuges to shave off six months off of Manhattan project instead of inefficient diffusion technology.
On par with Harry Turtledove & James P. Hogan.
Cohen in spy work not a stretch. He's more Jack Ryan middle age middle management everyman than kiss kiss bang bang James Bond. Besides his peers too famous to blend in.
Dirty bomb idea from John Campbell magazine nice twist.
Minor quibbles like did president FDR died April 12, 1945, Patton get into car accident, British Empire had softer landing, any operation Paperclip, Greek crisis and what about European Economic union?
Liked the two chapter epilogue in 1962CE in a more hopeful future & on weakened Soviet Union. No treasure-draining arms race. More money on space & civilian program. Fewer proxy wars like Korea & Vietnam. Not sure on CIA-KGB spy wars or more orderly decolonization by European powers from Africa, Asia & Caribbean.
However, still simmering Middle East.
The author's afterwords on truth stranger than fiction just as interesting.

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