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Author event and giveaway: Denise Kiernan

May 30, 2013

Denise Kiernan

I was fortunate to hear Denise Kiernan speak at a Book Your Lunch event while I was reading her latest book, The Girls of Atomic City.   We were lucky to have a 90 year old woman who worked at Oak Ridge and three women whose parents met at one of the tennis court dances there in attendance.  They all said they are impressed with the book and Denise’s research.  One asked if there has been any negative reaction to the nuclear aspect of the book and Denise told us there hasn’t been and only people from Oak Ridge have wondered about that.

While Denise was doing research for another book she ran across a photo of women working at Oak Ridge during World War II.  She hadn’t been aware of what went on there and initially assumed it was a gap in her knowledge.  She quickly discovered that very few people knew about the women of Oak Ridge.  She became obsessed in telling the story of these women from their perspective and spent countless hours interviewing as many people as she could and going through many of the 5,000 boxes of material in the Atlanta archives.  It was obvious Denise felt privileged to meet these women and she described them as humble.

Secrecy was drilled into the workers at Oak Ridge, so some people refused to speak with Denise because no one’s ever told them it’s okay to talk about their experience.  Training was compartmentalized and many people still don’t understand exactly what their part of the operation was.  They only discovered what they were working on when the bomb was detonated over Hiroshima.

Today, Oak Ridge is about half the size it was during it’s heyday.  It’s being considered for the Manhattan Project National Park Site.  The Atomic Heritage Foundation interviews workers for its oral history project.

The Girls of Atomic CityI got Denise to autograph a copy of The Girls of Atomic City for one lucky reader.  To enter to win an autographed copy of THE GIRLS OF ATOMIC CITY, by Denise Kiernan, simply fill out the entry form.  Contest is open worldwide – one entry per person, please.  I will use to determine the winner. Contest ends at midnight EDT Wednesday, June 5, 2013.    Comments are welcome (and appreciated) but will not get you an entry in the contest.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. May 30, 2013 5:40 am

    I already have a copy so don’t enter me. You sure were lucky to get to hear her speak and meet her in person!

  2. May 30, 2013 8:44 am

    This had to be fascinating to research. Definitely on my to-read, or to-listen list.

  3. Jennifer @ The Relentless Reader permalink
    May 30, 2013 8:47 am

    I won’t be entering, as I’ve just finished this book recently 😉 But I had to say how much I enjoyed the book. Good luck everyone!

  4. talesofwhimsy permalink
    May 30, 2013 10:44 am


  5. May 30, 2013 1:16 pm

    SQUEEE! I’m so happy you’re hosting a giveaway of this one! Parts crossed!

  6. Patty permalink
    May 30, 2013 1:40 pm


  7. May 30, 2013 2:15 pm

    I have been dying to read this book. I absolutely love non-fiction books that look at lesser known people and events.

  8. May 30, 2013 2:51 pm

    I love your author event posts because they introduce me to new authors and books!

  9. May 31, 2013 9:35 pm

    I admit ignorance and curiousity.

  10. June 2, 2013 1:37 am

    I’ve heard a few things about this book, now my interest is really piqued. Thanks for the giveaway.

  11. June 2, 2013 10:15 am

    I just signed up, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed double and triple ways in order for me to win. I think I would love this book.

  12. bookingmama permalink
    June 4, 2013 3:02 pm

    You’ve certainly convinced me about this one!

  13. June 4, 2013 8:45 pm

    This book sounds like one everyone should read!

  14. June 5, 2013 8:12 am

    I’ve never heard of this book or the subject! It sounds fascinating!

  15. June 5, 2013 3:04 pm

    I had heard of this book on NPR and it sounds very interesting. It’s very cool that you were able to hear the author at an author event. Interesting post!

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