Cover Image: Atomic Love

Atomic Love

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Overall, I found the writing flat, cliched & very little happened in terms of plot! I liked the idea of the story but the execution was done poorly. The writing style wasn’t my taste and I cringed at the dialogue. I didn’t care for the characters and hated that Rosalind wasn’t portrayed in more of a smart, independent woman who used her scientific ability but instead was a ditzy damsel-in-distress
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I was interested in this book because it was a spy novel with a dash of romance. However, there was very little spying going on in the story. There is a lot of romance in this novel. Overall, it just wasn’t for me.
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I love the way this novel was able to combine mystery, romance, and history all in one novel! It was well written, and I had a good time reading through this book.
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Lately, I've been a little burned out on historical fiction, but this title really sparked up the embers to my astonished delight.  Set against the aftermath of World War II and the dropping of the atomic bombs on Japan, Rosalind, a female scientist who contributed to The Manhattan Project, is reeling from changes in all aspects of her life.  Her personal feelings of her own involvement with the creation of something that could create so much destruction, her ongoing tension with her sister and the role they play in each other's lives, the recovery of a shattered heart after her fellow colleague, Thomas Weaver, abruptly cuts off their romantic relationship, and the slow suffocation of having to revert to selling jewelry in a department store after being tossed from her passionate career in the science field.

Treading water day after day at her jewelry counter, Rosalind is contacted by Weaver and wants to start a relationship again and also apparently get some secrets he's been keeping off his chest.  Enter FBI Agent Charlie Szydlo wanting Rosalind to be an asset to the bureau by relaying info about Weaver who they believe to be covertly sending nuclear secrets to Russia.  This encapsulates the major plot line running through this novel told in alternating voices by Rosalind and Szydlo.  While I could easily throw out the love triangle between Rosalind and the two male leads as a basic time filler of the plot, it is much more than that.  Fields really focuses on the characters and their evolution as they encounter the actions in the main plot.  While reading, I felt emotions for all three major characters regardless of whether they were negative or positive.  I find that a feat as some stories tend to droll out the events of the story leaving the reader with a bland indifference to the characters and how they feel.  Rosalind felt a little flaky at times in the beginning, but you understood her frustration and indecision upon the reveal of her backstory and how she had strived to live life on her terms.   The same can be said for Szydlo and his actions.  Especially brutal in this story are the flashbacks to his imprisonment during the war.

Great read, loved the characters, story ran at a good pace and evenly, romance done well but didn't overpower the story, was satisfied with the ending.  Also, while the main plot is espionage, spy stuff, etc, it is not really too complicated in that area.  Would recommend if you like historical fiction with modern sensibilities and a look at how actions on a global and personal scale can reverberate through life.  Four out of five stars.  

I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for an eARC of this title.
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Page-turning and heart breaking, this story of espionage, commitment to country, and following your heart clash when physicist Rosalind is asked to spy on a former lover she worked with on the Manhattan Project. 

As she navigates her new world, she must keep her mission in check as old feelings emerge and new feelings for her field agent, simmer. 

Great roller-coaster of a read to discover to learn how her life plays out and who her heart chooses. 

I received an advanced reader copy of this book for an honest review.
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I think I get overly excited about new books and think I can read them all.  That's I'll love them all.   That's not the case. I just can't get past the first chapter in so many of them.
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I truly enjoyed this book.  It was so different than I originally expected.  I loved the story of a female scientist working on the Manhattan Project. I enjoyed the romance, mystery and intrigue.
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I really enjoyed this book...right up until the last chapter.  I don’t like the final statements on where the characters ended up.  If she had ended it one chapter sooner it would have been a 5 star read for me.
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Suspenseful historical fiction! I loved this book so much that I read it in two sittings. What a great premise, a woman scientist from the Manhattan Project asked to spy on her former lover who may be a Russian informant.
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More historical fiction to fill my reading heart with joy! But be warned there's a hefty amount of romance and melodrama, too (which I did not mind one bit). 

I so enjoyed Rosalind -- her independence and career focus during a time when it was less than popular. I loved the friction between Weaver and Charlie and the layers of nuance in Rosalind's decision about which man she would choose. (Even though I felt pretty strongly who about I'd choose if I were her, without question.)

The descriptions were so vivid; I could picture myself throughout 1950s Chicago: in Rosalind's apartment, in the department store, the streets, Charlie's basement apartment....

This book was a delightful escape and a wonderful blend of romance, espionage, science, and historical fiction.
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Atomic Love follows Rosalind Porter, a scientist on the Manhattan Project, as she navigates work and life post-war. This was an easy read. I finished it over a few days. I wish that it had dived more into Rosalind's work but it stayed more firmly in the post-war timeframe. It also had the potential to be a super gritty spy thriller, but ended up a little lighter in tone and story. If you are looking for a lite historical romance, then this book is for you. Overall, I did enjoy it.
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I was so excited about this book but ended up finding the narration not to my liking. Definitely the best part was the strong heroine.
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Rosalind (Roz) Porter is a scientist who was involved in the Manhattan Project.  Now in Chicago in 1950, she is working in Marshall Field’s behind the jewelry counter.  Her guilt over her role in developing the atomic bomb that killed tens of thousands of people, and the sudden inexplicable end to her love affair with Thomas Weaver, a fellow scientist, were her emotional undoing that led to the loss of her job at the lab.

Now she is avoiding Weaver’s recent attempts to reconnect with her, but Charlie Szydlo, an FBI agent, steps in and pushes her to accept Weaver back into her life.  The FBI is looking for information that will tie Weaver to a Soviet spy ring and implicate him in passing classified secrets.  Roz agrees to meet Weaver and, despite hurts of the past, they resume their steamy affair.  But along with her task of drawing secrets from him, she wants answers – why did he suddenly drop her and marry someone else?  Rosalind struggles with her loyalty to Weaver and her responsibility to Szydlo.  Agent Szydlo is dealing with the scars from WWII, both physical and emotional, and Roz is there to help him heal.

The character of Roz is inconsistent.  She wavers between a strong, independent woman as a female physicist and a typical woman of the 1950s, ready to bend and please her man while falling into his arms when she meets danger. This book is equal parts romance and spy novel.  The romance overshadows the more important issue of Rosalind’s struggle with her role in the building of the atomic bomb and the gray areas of right or wrong in using it to end the war, but the spy narrative keeps the pages turning.

--Historical Novels Review, August 2020
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I usually do not enjoy romance books, but I had high hopes for the science and spy part of the book. Everything just seemed a bit too predicatable and the romance was in my opinion a bit over the top. Charlie was too insecure for a FBI agent, Weaver was too needy, and Rosalind kept making bad decisions. But if romance is your thing, you will probably enjoy this book.
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This novel combines a bit of mystery, a bit of romance and a bit of history. Rosalind Porter worked on the Manhattan Project in Chicago in 1950. Rosalind is smart ("What man wanted to be with a bookish girl?") and was overlooked and discounted as
a woman in her field. She had an affair with her colleague Thomas Weaver. At first when she started working for him, she didn't like him. (a standard trope where they dislike each other at first then fall in love) I couldn't understand the attraction: "Hazel eyes of constantly changing color, impressive brown hair, a dimpled Cary Grant chin. He was the cartoon of a good-looking man. He knew it, and this was the thing she disliked most about him. His swagger. His certainty. She was aware from the start the man was a flirt, and not just with her." Five years later, she's heartbroken about the end of that affair and feels guilty about the atomic bomb. The FBI wants her to spy on Weaver-- "Though she never asked for this assignment--spying on Weaver--the man still intrigues her as much as he repels her. Is it possible he's done awful things, is capable of future choices that could affect all the people passing them on the street? Everyone on the planet?" And interesting premise but I'd have preferred more focus on the science then on the romance and spies. I think I'd have liked to read about the Manhattan Project instead of its aftermath. So it dragged at times for me and I skimmed a bit.
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Historical Fiction is one of my favorite genres, and I was so excited to read Atomic Love!

I was drawn in right away to the 1950s Chicago backdrop, and I was so fascinated by the development into The Manhattan Project. 

I loved seeing a strong female protagonist featured, and Rosalind Porter was such an inspiring character. Jennie Fields really captured the details surrounding WWII at the heart of this story, and I loved the twists, the romance, and the mystery wrapped into one.

*many thanks to Putnam and Netgalley for the gifted copy. All opinions are my own
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I am not a big historical fiction reader, however this boo was so great! With a setting after the war, the atmosphere in this book was so well written. I loved the historical setting, the mystery and intrigue behind the characters and what will happen next. 

Such a phenomenal book, and highly recommend.
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I really enjoyed this title more than I expected to! I loved the romance and the science and how it all wrapped up. I would definitely read more by this author going forward.
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I never got the chance to read this one before it was archived, but the idea behind it is so promising! I'm truly grateful for the publisher giving me a chance to read it, and will be looking for a physical copy in my local bookstore.
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It's 1950, and the war is over, physics-loving Rosalind Porter feels guilty because she was part of the Manhattan Project, where the atomic bombs were created, but that's not all as she is also heartbroken. However, she manages to overcome those two problems until the FBI tells her that she has to get back into a relationship with her ex, Thomas Wheeler, in order to extract information from him, as Wheeler is suspected of having sold crucial information to the Russians. 
That sounds great, doesn't it? Sadly, the book focuses more on Roz's love and moral interest than solving the mystery of whether Wheeler sells the info to Russians. 
The plot at the beginning was engaging but as it continues, it ended up being a story that didn't meet my expectations. I expected a little more drama, and also learn more about the Russians.
What I did like was knowing about Charlie's past in order to connect with him, and also to let us know about the horrible reality of the war. And the romance seemed too insta-love, it lacked development. Anyway, I was disappointed and I don't think I will read another book by the author.
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