Oh pure and radiant heart /

by Millet, Lydia.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: Brooklyn, NY : [Berkeley, Calif.] : Soft Skull Press ; Distributed by Publishers Group West, c2005Description: 489 p. ; 24 cm.ISBN: 1932360859 :.Title notes: $25.00 6-2006 (db)Subject(s): Oppenheimer, J. Robert, 1904-1967 -- Fiction | Fermi, Enrico, 1901-1954 -- Fiction | Nuclear physicists -- Fiction | Women librarians -- Fiction | Santa Fe (N.M.) -- Fiction | Szilard, Leo -- Fiction | Celebrities -- Fiction | Atomic bomb -- Fiction | Time travel -- Fiction | Science fiction | Fantasy fictionOnline resources: Table of contents
The meaning of the porkpie hat -- Why tall people fear dwarves -- The dead maintain their good looks -- A vast infant.
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Item type Home library Collection Shelving location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Books Books Altadena Main Library
Adult Collection Adult Science Fiction SF MIL Available 39270002720310

Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

Oh Pure and Radiant Heart plucks the three scientists who were key to the invention of the atom bomb--Oppenheimer, Leo Szilard and Enrico Fermi--as they watch history's first mushroom cloud rise over the desert on July 16th, 1945...and places them down in modern-day Santa Fe. One by one, the scientists are spotted by a shy librarian who becomes convinced of their authenticity. Entranced, bewildered, overwhelmed by their significance as historical markers on the one hand, and their peculiar personalities on the other, she, to the dismay of her husband, devotes herself to them. Soon the scientists acquire a sugar daddy--a young pothead millionaire from Tokyo who bankrolls them. Heroes to some, lunatics or con artists to others, the scientists finally become messianic religious figureheads to fanatics, who believe Oppenheimer to be the Second Coming. As the ever-growing convoy traverses the country in a fleet of RV's on a pilgrimage to the UN, the scientists wrestle with the legacy of their invention and their growing celebrity, while Ann and her husband struggle with the strain on their marriage, a personal journey married to a history of thermonuclear weapons.

$25.00 6-2006 (db)

The meaning of the porkpie hat -- Why tall people fear dwarves -- The dead maintain their good looks -- A vast infant.

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Contentsithe Meaning of the Porkpie
  • Hat1iiwhy Tall People Fear Dwarvesiiithe
  • Dead Maintain their Good Looksiva Vast Infant

Excerpt provided by Syndetics

<opt> <anon I1="BLANK" I2="BLANK">1~In the middle of the twentieth century three men were charged with the task of removing the tension between minute and vast things. It was their job to rend asunder the smallest unit of being known to be separable from itself; out of a particle so modest there are billions in a single tear, in a moment so brief it could not be perceived, they would make the finite infinite.Two of the scientists were self-selected to split the atom. Leo Szilard and Enrico Fermi had chosen long before to work on the matter, to follow in the footsteps of Marie Curie and her husband, who had discovered radioactivity.The third man was a theoretical physicist who had considered the subject of the divisible atom among many others. He was a generalist, not a specialist. He did not select himself per se, but was chosen for the job by a soldier.Thousands worked at the whims of these men. From Szilard they took the first idea, from Fermi the fuel, from Oppenheimer both the orders and the inspiration. They built the first atomic bomb with primitive tools, performing their calculations on the same slide rules schoolchildren were given. For complex sums they punched keys on adding machines. Their equipment was clumsy and dull, or so it would seem by the standards of their children. Only their minds were sharp. In three years they achieved a technological miracle.Essentially they learned how to split the atom by chiseling secret runes onto rocks.And it should be admitted, the concession must be gracefully made: in the moment when a speck of dust acquires the power to engulf the world in fire, suddenly, then, all bets are off.Suddenly then there is no idea that cannot be entertained.~On a clear, cool spring night more than half a century after the invention of the atom bomb, a woman lying in her bed in the rich and leisured citadel of Santa Fe, New Mexico, had a dream.This itself was not surprising.To be precise it was less a dream than an idea in the struggle of waking up. She thought the dream as she began to rouse herself and she was left, after waking, with an urgency that had no answer. She was left salty and dry, trussed up in a sheet, the length of her a shudder of vague regret.In the dream a man was kneeling in the desert.The man was J. Robert Oppenheimer, the Father of the Atom Bomb. The desert was an American desert: it was the New Mexico desert, and the site was named Trinity. Oppenheimer named it that. He gave lofty names to all his works, all except Fat Man and Little Boy.These details would be revealed to her later. At the time nothing had a name but the man.The mans porkpie hat was tipped forward on his head and his pants were torn. His knobby knees were scratched and the abrasions were full of sand. She almost thought she could feel the sand against her own raw flesh, where the grains agitated. It may have been dust on the sheet beneath her, or, further removed, dust between the sheet and the mattress, a pea dreamed by a princess.H Excerpted from Oh Pure and Radiant Heart by Lydia Millet All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.</anon> </opt>

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