Review of Meltdown: Earthquake, Tsunami, and Nuclear Disaster in Fukushima

Meltdown: Earthquake, Tsunami, and Nuclear Disaster in Fukushima
by Deirdre Langeland
Middle School, High School    Roaring Brook    208 pp.    g
2/21    978-1-62672-700-7    $19.99
e-book ed.  978-1-62672-699-4    $10.99

In time for the tenth anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear disaster (March 2011), Langeland chronicles the largest nuclear disaster of the twenty-first century. This comprehensive look at the causes and consequences of the reactor meltdowns at the Fukushima nuclear power plant captures the tension and fear that gripped the world. Eyewitness accounts from survivors woven throughout the expertly narrated text reveal the horror and devastation of the earthquake and subsequent tsunami as well as the resulting nuclear reactor meltdowns. Clear explanations of both the science behind the seismic events that precipitated the disaster and the ­technology that was meant to contain it provide a full picture of the events and heroic feats that prevented an even greater catastrophe. Langeland leaves room for these scientific expository asides without ever hampering the narrative momentum. A chapter discussing the long-term consequences of the disaster as well as the ongoing efforts to revitalize the surrounding towns and cities is appreciated. Color photographs, maps, and diagrams throughout, as well as substantial back matter including a detailed timeline, glossary of scientific terms, a well-organized bibliography, and extensive quotation sourcing, round out this impressive and compelling work of nonfiction.

From the March/April 2021 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Eric Carpenter
Eric Carpenter
Eric Carpenter is the school librarian at Fred A. Toomer Elementary School in Atlanta, Georgia.

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