Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man, by John Coster-Mullen


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Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man, by John Coster-Mullen

Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man, by John Coster-Mullen

Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man, by John Coster-Mullen

Free PDF Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man, by John Coster-Mullen

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Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man, by John Coster-Mullen

  • Sales Rank: #420887 in Books
  • Published on: 2002
  • Binding: Spiral-bound
  • 138 pages

From the Publisher
The author has attended every reunion of the 509th Composite Group since 1994. In 2004, he created a full-scale exact replica of the Little Boy atomic bomb for permanent display at the Historic Wendover, Utah Airfield Museum. Before final delivery to Wendover, it was signed by all of the surviving members of the 509th at their 2004 reunion in Wichita. This book was used by Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) author Dr. Robert S. Norris as the primary source for information on both bombs in his monumental “Racing For The Bomb” biography of General Groves published in 2002. Excerpts from the book pertaining to the Little Boy safing and arming plugs were used by the Defense (Exhibit K) in the famous case of the United States vs. Butterfields Auctioneers (Case No. 02-2776) and were instrumental in U.S. District Court Judge Susan Illston’s 6/14/2002 decision to reject the government’s claim to the plugs. The book was used by Japanese author Kiyoshi Souwa for his 2003 book “Hiroshima Atomic Bombing, The Meaning To Drop It At 8:15 A.M.” and by English author Stephen Walker for his 2005 book “Shockwave.” The book was also used as the main source for artist Jim Sanborn’s 2003 “Critical Assembly” exhibit at the Corcoran Gallery in DC. The book is in the technical libraries at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), Aldermaston in England, and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum library. People at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Sandia National Laboratory (SNL), ORNL, LLNL, Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), Hanford, DOE, Fermilab, IAEA, Naval Post Graduate School, NRDC, Georgetown University, Harvard, Princeton, and Stanford have all bought copies. He serves as advisor to the National Atomic Museum and The Children of the Manhattan Project Preservation Association.

The author worked with the BBC, which produced a documentary pertaining to the bombs and used his book as source material. The “Tech Effects” program “Hiroshima” also appears on the History Channel and the author is listed in the credits. He has been interviewed by ABC News, National Public Radio in Vienna, Austria, NHK TV Tokyo, Hiroshima Chogoku Shimbun, and The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. He gave a presentation at a Manhattan Project Symposium in New York on 6/26/04 and on 8/14/04, along with General Paul Tibbets, at the Wright-Patterson USAF Museum in Ohio. On April 6, 2005, he met with the Hiroshima World Peace Mission delegation at Wendover where they inspected the areas where the original test atomic bombs were assembled and uncovered the fragmentary remains of the grounded copper-covered floor used in the Fat Man test unit final assembly building. In August 2005, he was honored to accept an invitation by the government of Tinian to give a series of presentations on the 60th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bombs on Japan to an audience of both US and Japanese veterans. “I was very much impressed.” — Paul W. Tibbets, Brig. General, USAF, Retired “What you have now written is the best, I am sure, of any discussion on the subject I have seen.” — Frederick L. Ashworth, Vice Admiral, USN, Retired “Your book contains the best description of the Nagasaki mission I have ever read.” — Dutch Van Kirk, Enola Gay Navigator “I think your story is excellent. I don’t recall anything like it before.” — George Caron, Enola Gay Tail Gunner “I am very favorably impressed by the amount of information you have gathered together and presented in an interesting fashion.” — Norman F. Ramsey, Project Alberta “You have done a remarkable job.” — Philip Morrison, Manhattan Project Physicist “Your detailed and unique research is very impressive.” — Henry Linschitz, Manhattan Project Chemist “Most amazing document…In all first rate.” — Harold Agnew, Project Alberta and former Director of Los Alamos

About the Author
The author is a married 59-year-old father of three. His physics teacher in school worked at the University of Chicago Metallurgical Laboratory during WWII as part of the Manhattan Project. He was a professional corporate and advertising photographer for almost 30 years, including three years as Chief Photographer for the Trane Air Conditioning Company and spent ten years in charge of an advertising photography studio in Milwaukee. He received numerous state and national awards, including a Graphic Design USA DESI Award, and served on the editorial board of Industrial Photography magazine, the Board of Directors of the Chicago Chapter of the ASMP (American Society of Magazine Photographers), and as Vice President of the APM (Advertising Photographers of Milwaukee). This is his first book.

Most helpful customer reviews

53 of 55 people found the following review helpful.
The Missing Part of the Manhattan Project Story
By Terry Sunday
“Atom Bombs: The Top Secret Inside Story of Little Boy and Fat Man” fills an important niche in the literature about the development of nuclear weapons. There is no shortage of books on the Manhattan Project, including such classics as “Now It Can Be Told,” “Brighter Than A Thousand Suns” and “The Making of the Atomic Bomb.” Biographies of scientists who worked on the project, including Robert Oppenheimer and Edward Teller, also abound. One would think that there would not be much fresh material to write about a project that, after all, took place more than 60 years ago. But new books on the subject continue to crop up. One of the latest, “Shockwave: Countdown to Hiroshima,” released in 2005, details the last couple of weeks before the atomic bombings of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki that ended World War II. In reading “Shockwave,” I found that virtually all of the passages that referred to the technical details of the “Little Boy” and “Fat Man” bombs footnoted John Coster-Mullens’ “Atom Bombs.” So I had to buy it. It was an excellent decision.

According to a review in “The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists,” Coster-Mullen has not yet found a publisher willing to print his book, which is unfortunate–it deserves to be issued in bound hardcover form. Hopefully someday it will be. Now, what you get is a spiral-bound 8-1/2×11-inch, 402-page book with nice thick card-stock covers. Although it is printed on a laser printer, the printing quality is very good, and the photos and drawings are clear, sharp and crisp. My order, shipped directly from the author in Wisconsin, showed up very quickly and in perfect condition in a large padded envelope.

Enough about the appearance–what about the content? Quite simply, there is NO better source of information on the technical details of the world’s first two nuclear weapons. In the first 88 pages, after touching on the history of the Manhattan Project and the “Silverplate” Boeing B-29 “Superfortress” bombers that were specially modified to carry the weapons, Coster-Mullen describes the design, configuration, materials and assembly procedures of “Little Boy” and “Fat Man” to an unprecedented level of detail. But wait, there’s more! The bulk of “Atom Bombs” is made up of appendices containing hundreds of pages of photos, drawings, sketches, patent applications and declassified source documents that reveal nearly every detail about the design, development, construction and testing of “Little Boy” and “Fat Man” that you could ever want to know. This is really “nuts and bolts” stuff, literally. Finally, there are over 30 pages of endnotes, which themselves constitute a unique and valuable resource. You’ll know more when you finish reading “Atom Bombs” than you can learn from all of the other books on the subject combined. It gets my highest possible recommendation.

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful.
The quest to replicate the first A-bombs
By Frederick J. Miller
The December 15, 2008 issue of New Yorker contains a lengthy and fascinating story about the author of this book. “Atomic John: A truck driver uncovers secrets about the first nuclear bombs” by David Samuels, is every bit as engrossing as the book itself. Having read the book before the magazine article I had assumed that the author was a scientist of world renown, not the over-the-road truck driver who has devoted much of his life researching the subject, writing, and even printing the book and mailing it to the purchasers from his home in Waukesha, Wisconsin. The New Yorker article should be included as an addendum to the book.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
This book passes muster & then some…
By David Rolon
After reading a fascinating article in the New Yorker about the author and his passion for atom bomb research, I gave this book as a Christmas gift to a hard to please engineer friend who has a 20+ year interest in the subject matter. His typical criticism about a-bomb books is that they are sugar-coated not technical enough. I’m happy to report that this one gets two thumbs up across the board. Mr. Coster-Mullen has obviously put together a well-researched, serious document. His dedication and hard work shine!

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