The Destroyer of Worlds: Oppenheimer and the Atomic Bomb

The latest in the In A Nutshell series acts as a poignant retelling of the life of J. Robert Oppenheimer for child readers. Oppenheimer, a theoretical physicist from the United States of America, was the director of the Manhattan Project during World War II and known by many as ‘the father of the atomic bomb’.

Rod Smith expertly relates the delicate subject matter in this sensitive and highly topical account of Oppenheimer’s life and the use of atomic bombs in the Second World War. Smith provides an objective and easily accessible account of Oppenheimer’s life, scientific expertise, and political career, emphasizing not only his role in the creation of the atomic bomb, but also his vehement opposition to the continued use of nuclear weapons. 

Accompanied by colourful illustrations from Derry Dillon, Smith’s writing imparts the significance of peaceful negotiation as a means of resolving conflict between nations, spotlighting the experiences of those who survived the nuclear bombings at Nagasaki and Hiroshima, and their activism in protest against nuclear weaponry.

Readers will be able to engage in meaningful discussion of this book with the help of the useful educational resources included at the back, including a glossary, quiz, and a timeline of events. This book successfully relates a tragic chapter from human history in a child-friendly manner and encourages readers to work towards a peaceful future.

Book Cover – The Destroyer of Worlds: Oppenheimer and the Atomic Bomb
Publication Date
March 2024