This is a strangely captivating book — dark and utterly frightening, despite or perhaps because of the author’s dispassionate tone ... Zak’s narrative is a perfectly measured blend of biography, suspense and history. He skillfully uses the small, finite story of the Y-12 protest to explore our national identity as a people whose culture is now intimately connected with things nuclear.
Not exactly a chuckle-fest, and yet for the density of the subject matter, Almighty is fast-paced and inviting. The most disturbing portion of the book is also the most memorable, as Zak recounts the only two times atomic bombs were used as weapons of war ... What we can do is learn and think and question. Zak’s book could go a long way toward achieving that goal.
I wish Zak had checked his physics more carefully; his descriptions of how nuclear weapons work are badly garbled ... These minor errors hardly weaken the authority of Zak’s report on where we are and how we got here ... With nuns splashing blood, countries making pledges, diplomats working to reduce the size of world-destroying arsenals, suppliers cheering a new Cold War, Zak demonstrates that we’re all in it together. And he’s honest enough to report as well the hard truth that none of us yet knows how to get out of it alive.