Bomb: The Race to Build—and Steal—the World's Most Dangerous Weapon is a 2012 adolescent non-fiction book by author Steve Sheinkin. The book won the 2013 Newbery Honor and Sibert Medal[1] from the American Library Association. This book follows the process of building the nuclear bomb by the discovery of nuclear fission by German scientist Otto Hahn in December 17, 1938.

Bomb : The Race to Build-and Steal-the World's Most Dangerous Weapon
Sheinkin Bomb cover.jpg
AuthorSteve Sheinkin
CountryUnited States
PublisherRoaring Brook Press
Publication date
Media typePrints
623.45119 SHE
LC ClassUG1282.A8 .S235 2012


The book traces the origin and development of the first atomic bomb. It follows the development of the atomic bomb from the discovery of nuclear fission through the Nazi heavy water manufacture to the Manhattan Project and the attempts of the Soviet Union to steal the bomb design, finishing at the dropping of the bombs on the cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima Japan.


The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (Missouri) in 2013 called this the best nonfiction book of the year for young adults (YA), and said that it was a '... most distinguished informational ...' book.[2] Kirkus Review said "the book is a true spy thriller...It takes a lot of work to make a complicated subject clear and exciting, and from his prodigious research and storytelling skill, Sheinkin has created a nonfiction story young people will want to read."[3] Lisa Taylor, from School Library Journal Reviews, said that "this award-winning, meticulously sourced book deserves a spot in every library"[4] and Brian Odom noted the extensive historical information and hard facts, concluding that Bomb was a "well-documented account. It reads like an international spy thriller, and that's the beauty of it."[5]


  • Winner of the 2013 Sibert Medal
  • Winner of the 2013 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction[6]
  • A 2013 Newbery Medal Honor Book[7]
  • 2012 National Book Award Finalist for Young People's Literature[8]


  1. ^ "Robert F. Sibert Medal and Honor Books, 2001-present". Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC). American Library Association (ALA). Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  2. ^ Review. St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 2013
  3. ^ Kirkus Review. "Review. 'Bomb: The Race to Build -and steal- the World's Most Dangerous Weapon'". 2012.
  4. ^ Taylor, Lisa. Review. School Library Journal reviews 2013.
  5. ^ Odom, Brian. Review. School Library Journal reviews. 2012
  6. ^ "YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults". Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). American Library Association (ALA). Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  7. ^ "2013 Newbery Medal and Honor Books". Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC). American Library Association (ALA). Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  8. ^ "2012 National Book Awards". National Book Awards. National Book Foundation. Retrieved 20 February 2018.