Based on a real life story, Rain of Ruin tells the story of a bright, young woman who signs on with the atomic bomb project in Washington, D.C. during WWII and pays a tragically high price for doing her duty.
Military leaders and historians have told the story of the atomic bomb. But the official accounts never focus on the thousands of ordinary Americans who helped make it happen. Rain of Ruin tells the story from their point of view for the first time. It follows Agnes Jenkins Flaherty, an eighteen-year-old country girl, as she takes her devout religious faith and towering sense of responsibility to wartime Washington, D.C. to work with the Manhattan Project.
She quickly finds love in the city, but her budding romance is overshadowed by a growing sense of terror when she learns, from the Top Secret documents crossing her desk, that project scientists think setting off the bomb might destroy the earth. Agnes escapes that prospect, but not the heartbreaking disappointment and tragedy that follow.
“Agnes imagined she could hear the final countdown. She knew everyone at the test site was hearing it over the P-A system Bainbridge had installed. She could think of nothing but that voice, the countdown to eternity: sixty seconds--fifty-nine seconds--fifty-eight seconds--fifty-seven seconds. Agnes reached for her Bible and then sat absolutely still at the dressing table. Ten-nine-eight-seven-six-five-four-three-two-one-now! Agnes strained to hear the roar and feel the heat of the fire that would incinerate the world.”
Midwest Book Review
The most destructive force in the twentieth century still had paper work. Rain of Ruin: The Stirring Account of a Young Woman’s Life as a Clerk for the Top Secret Manhattan Project is a novel from Mark Kelley, telling the tale of Agnes Jenkins Flaherty, an 18 year old girl brought in for secretary work close to the Manhattan Project, seeing bits and pieces of a secret no one intends for her to see. A unique personal story with a creative backdrop, Rain of Ruin is a strong addition to any historical fiction collection.