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Countdown 1945 - Chris Wallace

Countdown 1945

By Chris Wallace

  • Release Date: 2020-06-09
  • Genre: United States
Score: 4.5
From 601 Ratings


The #1 national bestselling “riveting” (The New York Times), “propulsive” (Time) behind-the-scenes account “that reads like a tense thriller” (The Washington Post) of the 116 days leading up to the American attack on Hiroshima by veteran journalist and anchor of Fox News Sunday, Chris Wallace.

April 12, 1945: After years of bloody conflict in Europe and the Pacific, America is stunned by news of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s death. In an instant, Vice President Harry Truman, who has been kept out of war planning and knows nothing of the top-secret Manhattan Project to develop the world’s first atomic bomb, must assume command of a nation at war on multiple continents—and confront one of the most consequential decisions in history. Countdown 1945 tells the gripping true story of the turbulent days, weeks, and months to follow, leading up to August 6, 1945, when Truman gives the order to drop the bomb on Hiroshima.

In Countdown 1945, Chris Wallace, the veteran journalist and anchor of Fox News Sunday, takes readers inside the minds of the iconic and elusive figures who join the quest for the bomb, each for different reasons: the legendary Albert Einstein, who eventually calls his vocal support for the atomic bomb “the one great mistake in my life”; lead researcher J. Robert “Oppie” Oppenheimer and the Soviet spies who secretly infiltrate his team; the fiercely competitive pilots of the plane selected to drop the bomb; and many more.

Perhaps most of all, Countdown 1945 is the story of an untested new president confronting a decision that he knows will change the world forever. But more than a book about the atomic bomb, Countdown 1945 is also an unforgettable account of the lives of ordinary American and Japanese civilians in wartime—from “Calutron Girls” like Ruth Sisson in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, to ten-year-old Hiroshima resident Hideko Tamura, who survives the blast at ground zero but loses her mother and later immigrates to the United States, where she lives to this day—as well as American soldiers fighting in the Pacific, waiting in fear for the order to launch a possible invasion of Japan. Told with vigor, intelligence, and humanity, Countdown 1945 is the definitive account of one of the most significant moments in history.


  • Miscategorized

    By Bigdunn22
    Anything written by this author has to be classified as fiction. Chris’s dad at least had some journalistic integrity and talent. Chris has neither.
  • Countdown 1945

    By Mehal21
    This book will make the reader read more about WW2 and the nuclear program and the Manhattan Project
  • An excellent view from the inside....

    By Lwsda
    Wonderfully framed and delivered

    By Clancypro
    Chris Wallace knocks it out of the park! Fast, concise - reads like a timetable thriller - which it is.
  • An easy read

    By lpeax
    Countdown 1945 is an easy read but if you are looking for a more in depth treatment of the subject I would look elsewhere.
  • Good

    By wer749
    Very Good
  • One Fine Book!

    By Jkmadm
    Well written account of the world changing events of the second world war’s dramatic end. A fast read because I wanted to read on. Thank you for the work of putting this together to the authors, historians, and survivors.
  • Great Historical Read!

    By Lol man 2536525
    Countdown 1945 will have you glued to the pages. As the legendary journalist Chris Wallace guides the reader through the exemplary American leadership and tough decisions leading up to the Atomic bomb.
  • Excellent

    By Am book reader
    I thought I knew the history behind the Manhattan Project and Truman’s agonized decision to drop the first WMD, but the behind scenes action and people made this come to life. Even all these decades later, controversy still surrounds the dropping of the can make your own decision after reading this fact filled account of wars horrors. Highly recommend.
  • 1945

    By NHSDoogie67
    Absolutely loved the book. As a military brat who grew up in Germany during the Cold War this book really open my eyes as to what led to many years of struggle and strife following WWII. Chris did an outstanding job of drawing me into the events as if I was really there as they were happening. Way to go Chris. Thank you for sharing your literary genius. Doug Veith