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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (169 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: William Langewiesche Narrator: Tom Weiner Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2015 ISBN: 9781504626293
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In his shocking and revelatory new work, celebrated journalist William Langewiesche investigates the burgeoning threat of nuclear-weapons production and the inexorable drift of nuclear-weapons technology from the hands of the rich into the hands of the poor. As more unstable and undeveloped nations acquire the ultimate arms, the stakes of state-sponsored nuclear activity have soared to frightening heights. Even more disturbing is the likelihood of such weapons being used by guerrilla non-state terrorists.

The author also recounts the recent history of Abdul Qadeer Khan, the scientist at the forefront of nuclear development who single-handedly peddled nuclear plans to North Korea, Iran, and other potentially hostile countries. He then examines in dramatic and tangible detail the chances for nuclear terrorism.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Langewiesche brings knowledge and passion as well as a careful eloquence to his subject.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Langewiesche has evolved into perhaps our leading forensic journalist, a voracious student of all that can go wrong. Like a literary-minded accident investigator, he digs for every shred of evidence, without worrying about whom his conclusions might offend.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “[A] brief, tightly packed study that precisely defines an issue worthy of being at the forefront of our international policy.”

    Publishers Weekly, Best Books of the Year 2007

  • “Tom Weiner’s baritone lends gravity to this chilling book about nuclear weapons and the potential for terrorists to use them.”

    AudioFile

  • “Intrepid and electrifying…Langewiesche’s bracing exposé of nuclear criminality blasts away the ubiquitous misinformation usually attendant on this alarming subject.”

    Booklist

  • “Langewiesche takes a hard look at nuclear proliferation and explains why the problem isn't going away…His blunt summary of this sorry history pulls no punches and offers very little consolation. Depressing but essential reading.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tom | 2/6/2014

    " This chilling, detailed analysis of the black market spread of nuclear technology puts the fear in me that nuclear war and/or terrorism will happen in my lifetime... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ned | 1/23/2014

    " Very engaging read by a skilled writer and reporter that somehow never quite makes a point but nonetheless provides lots of very interesting perspective on the like Abdul Qadir Khan, the woeful state of intelligence on nuclear matters and the strange and probably impenetrable isolation of the ex-Soviet secret nuclear cities. I could not put it down but I also can't tell you whether the author thinks we're more or less vulnerable than we think we are. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rebecca | 1/19/2014

    " an interesting, simple explanation of nuclear proliferation issues - good starter pack with your stolen cesium-137. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Freddy | 1/17/2014

    " While the information was interesting, the book is littered with what, in my opinion, amounted to heavily partisan political cheapshots that severely detracted from the reading experience. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mk100 | 1/2/2014

    " As the old movie tag used to say, "Be afraid. Be very afraid." Wow - Langewiesche is his usually terrific writerly self, and the information he has assembled on the use and misuse of nuclear material is terrifying and fascinating. A terrific read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jake | 12/30/2013

    " I found this book at my local dollar store and it looked interesting enough for the price. I was presently surprised, William Langewiesche does a great job of debunking some of our most common assumptions about atomic weapons falling into the "wrong hands". "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ray | 12/27/2013

    " Well documented book, discussing how weapons can be spread, and focusing on Pakistan's chief nuclear scientist A. Q. Khan and how he facilitated profliferation of nuclear weapons to North Korea, Libya, and several other nations. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bill | 11/8/2013

    " Very good overall, but not well-served by the punched-up journalistic style. Nice to see Mark Hibbs get his due. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Geza Tatrallyay | 9/18/2013

    " Gives a great perspective on how easy it could be for terrorists to get their hands on nuclear material from one of the former Soviet secret nuclear cities, where international efforts are now trying to warehouse the stuff. A short, gripping book, very illuminating and hard to put down. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Aaron | 6/10/2012

    " much better and more interesting than I thought it would be from the jacket. good mix of science, theory and politics surrounding the atom "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Craig Fiebig | 8/13/2011

    " Everybody should read this very disturbing book. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Diener | 3/29/2011

    " Eye-opening. Peers into a world often overlooked, or at least underreported, by mainstream media. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Steve | 12/12/2010

    " There are some scary people in the world, and there isn't a lot we can do to stop them. An insightful book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kevin | 12/10/2010

    " Interesting look at nuclear proliferation and the life of AQ Khan "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stephen | 6/18/2010

    " Too much A.Q. Khan, not enough cloak-and-dagger. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jake | 5/4/2010

    " I found this book at my local dollar store and it looked interesting enough for the price. I was presently surprised, William Langewiesche does a great job of debunking some of our most common assumptions about atomic weapons falling into the "wrong hands". "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mk100 | 1/4/2010

    " As the old movie tag used to say, "Be afraid. Be very afraid." Wow - Langewiesche is his usually terrific writerly self, and the information he has assembled on the use and misuse of nuclear material is terrifying and fascinating. A terrific read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Diener | 8/18/2009

    " Eye-opening. Peers into a world often overlooked, or at least underreported, by mainstream media. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kevin | 11/9/2008

    " Interesting look at nuclear proliferation and the life of AQ Khan "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ray | 10/12/2008

    " Well documented book, discussing how weapons can be spread, and focusing on Pakistan's chief nuclear scientist A. Q. Khan and how he facilitated profliferation of nuclear weapons to North Korea, Libya, and several other nations. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stephen | 9/18/2008

    " Too much A.Q. Khan, not enough cloak-and-dagger. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bill | 9/2/2008

    " Very good overall, but not well-served by the punched-up journalistic style. Nice to see Mark Hibbs get his due. "

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About the Author

William Langewiesche is the author of eight books, including Cutting for Sign, Sahara Unveiled, Inside the Sky, American Ground, and, most recently, Aloft: Thoughts on the Experience of Flight. He is currently an international editor for Vanity Fair and was for years a national correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly, where he was nominated for eight consecutive National Magazine Awards.

About the Narrator

Tom Weiner, a dialogue director and voice artist best known for his roles in video games and television shows such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Transformers, is the winner of eight Earphones Awards and Audie Award finalist. He is a former member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.