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Ablaze: The Story of the Heroes and Victims of Chernobyl
The bestselling author of Blaze presents a heart-pounding account of the world's greatest nuclear disaster, based on sources not available before the fall of the Soviet Union. Read's enthralling account is filled with acts of courage--and also bumbling confusion, secrecy, lies, and coverups. Read spent many months in Russia interviewing hundreds of survivors and experts. P ...more
Hardcover, 362 pages
Published April 19th 1993 by Random House
(first published 1993)
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I finally gave this back to the library 'cause it was overdue (not that the TCL is very stringent with their fines). (I'm a big supporter.) It's a fairly good book, and I'd have been interested to see what Read had to say about the effect of Chernobyl on the future of the nuclear power industry. In fact, I'm still interested enough to maybe check the book out again. I got a little bogged down in the middle, where he was talking about the legal aftermath in the USSR and the health and agriculture ...more
If you've never read anything about Chernobyl, this book will tell you a great deal. There are real-life villains and real-life heroes, and Read interviewed both. But this book was also very obviously written in a huge hurry- Read clearly wanted to be the first to come out with a Western account of the 1986 nuclear disaster after the USSR dissolved. There are typos on (literally) almost every page, there are no footnotes, and no explanation at the end of the book which of the interviews the jack ...more
Sep 16, 2009 Meg - A Bookish Affair rated it 3 of 5 stars
This book was definitely interesting. I didn't know much about the Chernobyl accident. One of my friends who is getting ready to go into the Peace Corps in Ukraine recommended the book to me. What was most interesting to me is that so much of the aftermath of the accident was totally mishandled because of the government that was in place at the time (Remember, this still happened under the Soviet Union). I wonder how much of the damage of the town and the sickness of the people could have been p ...more
This book took me a while to get through, but I enjoyed the ride.One drawback was the many characters to keep track of, with beautiful but difficult to remember Russian names; the author does inclues a cast of characters at the beginning of the book. At times it dragged, but for the most part it was a good read and I learned a lot. The book encompasses the whole story, not only about the actual Chernobyl disaster, but events leading up to it, and all that went what wrong with the communist syste ...more
This was the most in-depth, thorough account and study of the Chernobyl accident I have ever read. The author explored the history and culture of the country and how they related to the accident and the reactions to the accident. It's a long book but well worth the time to read it.
Jul 27, 2007 Koshenka rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: ayone interested in the story of Chernobyl
It not only gives you the facts of the tragedy that occured at Chernobyl, it gives you a glimpse of what life was like for people during the Soviet era. If you're interested in this subject at all, read it.
British novelist and non-fiction writer. Educated at the Benedictines' Ampleforth College, and subsequently entered St John's College, University of Cambridge where he received his BA and MA (history). Artist-in-Residence at the Ford Foundation in Berlin (1963-4), Harkness Fellow, Commonwealth Fund, New York (1967-8), member of the Council of the Institute of Contemporary Arts (1971-5), member of ...moreMore about Piers Paul Read...