Discussion Guide: FALLOUT by Steve Sheinkin


Fallout by Steve Sheinkin
Ages 12-18

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New York Times bestselling author Steve Sheinkin presents a follow up to his award-winning book Bomb: The Race to Buildand Steal–the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon, taking readers on a terrifying journey into the Cold War and our mutual assured destruction.

As World War II comes to a close, the United States and the Soviet Union emerge as the two greatest world powers on extreme opposites of the political spectrum. After the United States showed its hand with the atomic bomb in Hiroshima, the Soviets refuse to be left behind. With communism sweeping the globe, the two nations begin a neck-and-neck competition to build even more destructive bombs and conquer the Space Race. In their battle for dominance, spy planes fly above, armed submarines swim deep below, and undercover agents meet in the dead of night.

The Cold War game grows more precarious as weapons are pointed towards each other, with fingers literally on the trigger. The decades-long showdown culminates in the Cuban Missile Crisis, the world’s close call with the third—and final—world war.

Praise for FALLOUT:

“In this gripping account, Newbery Honor Book author and Sibert medalist Sheinkin offers an intense narrative that captures the terrifying tensions of the Cold War.” —Bookliststarred review

“Sheinkin reprises his role as masterful, ever-so-wry storyteller, winking his audience into complicity in his critique of boneheaded brinksmanship…” —The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Booksstarred review

“In tightly organized chapters adorned with historical photos, Sheinkin seamlessly weaves the stories of different players and includes meticulously well-researched details to personalize and humanize his subjects… A first purchase for all teen collections.” —School Library Journalstarred review

“Throughout, the highly charged narrative maintains a strong perspective and keen attention to detail, rounding out the figures involved—such as the American pilot Gary Powers, who flew U-2 jets to spy on Russia—with character and personality.” —Publishers Weeklystarred review

“Steve Sheinkin recounts the “most intense years of the Cold War” with a cinematic writing style that is keenly detailed… Look no further for informative and entertaining nonfiction.” —Shelf Awarenessstarred review