The Radium Girls
The Dark Story of America's Shining WomenBook - 2017
A New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon Charts Bestseller!
"the glowing ghosts of the radium girls haunt us still."--NPR Books
For fans of Hidden Figures, comes the incredible true story of the women heroes who were exposed to radium in factories across the U.S. in the early 20th century, and their brave and groundbreaking battle to strengthen workers' rights, even as the fatal poison claimed their own lives...
The Curies' newly discovered element of radium makes gleaming headlines across the nation as the fresh face of beauty and wonder drug of the medical community. From body lotion to tonic water, the popular new element shines bright in the otherwise dark years of the First World War.
Meanwhile, hundreds of girls toil amidst the glowing dust of the radium-dial factories. The glittering chemical covers their bodies from head to toe; they light up the night like industrious fireflies. With such a coveted job, these "shining girls" are the luckiest alive -- until they begin to fall mysteriously ill.
But the factories that once offered golden opportunities are now ignoring all claims of the gruesome side effects, and the women's cries of corruption. And as the fatal poison of the radiumtakes hold, the brave shining girls find themselves embroiled in one of the biggest scandals of America's early 20th century, and in a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights that will echo for centuries to come.
Written with a sparkling voice and breakneck pace, The Radium Girlsfully illuminates the inspiring young women exposed to the "wonder" substance of radium, and their awe-inspiring strength in the face of almost impossible circumstances.Their courage and tenacity led to life-changing regulations, research into nuclear bombing, and ultimately saved hundreds of thousands of lives...
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From Library Staff
"I could not put down Radium Girls. It was powerful and almost like a train wreck I couldn't look away from. Those poor women went through so much in their later years, and it was fascinating to see them piece together what was happening to each of them and how it was all linked." - Ale... Read More »
In the 1920s, the recent discovery of radium led to a variety of novelty products sold using the element: radium water (for health!), and glow-in-the-dark watch faces. Employed to paint those watch faces were young women, many of whom later experienced truly horrific — and fatal — effects. This b... Read More »
Chicago Public Library recommends this title as one of the best books published in 2017.
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