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Craig Mazin's Top Book Recommendations

Writer, Producer/Chernobyl TV Series

Want to know what books Craig Mazin recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Craig Mazin's favorite book recommendations of all time.


The Truth About Chernobyl

The Truth About Chernobyl by Grigori Medvedev, the top Soviet physicist who was originally commissioned to investigate the tragedy, is at long last available to reveal the long-suppressed, minute-by-minute account of the disaster and cover-up along with an analysis of the consequences. less
Recommended by Craig Mazin, and 1 others.

Craig MazinThe Truth About Chernobyl is essential reading from a Soviet physicist's perspective... and Grigori Medvedev had his boots on the ground. An excellent combination of historic recounting and clear science. (Source)

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Insight from the Inside

Chernousenko's "Chernobyl" is a first-hand account of the events and facts surrounding this global disaster: The first part of the book includes an absoring account of what happened at Chernobyl nuclear power station on April 26, 1986, as well as a review of the rectification measures taken so far. The author re-analyzes the causes of the accident, confronting us with startling details about critical design faults in the (RBMK) reactors of the Chernobyl type. - The second part deals with the long-range and long-term effects of the catastrophe on man and environment, including a wealth of yet... more
Recommended by Craig Mazin, and 1 others.

Craig MazinOthers worth considering (although they are often hard to find) that rounded out my library... Chernobyl: Insight from the Inside by VM Chernousenko. (Source)

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The nuclear accident at Chernobyl on April 26, 1986 had a heavy impact on life, health, and the environment. It caused agony to people in the Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia and anxiety far away from these countries. The economic losses and social dislocation were severe in a region already under strain. It is now possible to make more accurate assessments of these effects than it was in the first few years following the catastrophe.

An internationally known author, speaker, and medical physicist, Dr. Mould visited the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Station in December 1987 and in June 1998....
Recommended by Craig Mazin, and 1 others.

Craig MazinTwo others worth considering (although they are often hard to find) that rounded out my library...Chernobyl: Insight from the Inside by VM ChernousenkoChernobyl Record by RF Mould (Source)

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The Legacy of Chernobyl

On the morning of April 26, 1986, a Soviet nuclear plant at Chernobyl (near Kiev) exploded, pouring radioactivity into the environment and setting off the worst disaster in the history of nuclear energy. Now a former Soviet scientist gives a comprehensive account of the catastrophe. less
Recommended by Craig Mazin, and 1 others.

Craig MazinThe Legacy of Chernobyl is also good for an additional perspective from the inside. (Source)

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The bestselling author of Blaze presents a heart-pounding account of the world's greatest nuclear disaster, based on sources not available before the fall of the Soviet Union. Read's enthralling account is filled with acts of courage--and also bumbling confusion, secrecy, lies, and coverups. Read spent many months in Russia interviewing hundreds of survivors and experts. Photographs. 3 maps. less
Recommended by Craig Mazin, and 1 others.

Craig MazinABLAZE is a very well-done book from a Western historical perspective. As with a number of the books I read, it's a bit outdated simply because of when it was written, but it's an excellent recounting. (Source)

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Voices from Chernobyl

On April 26, 1986, the worst nuclear reactor accident in history occurred at the Chernobyl complex in Pripyat. English-language reportage on the incident has, so far, focused on facts, names, and data; Voices from Chernobyl presents first-hand accounts of what happened to the people of Belarus and the fear, anger, and uncertainty that they lived through. In order to give voice to their experiences, Svetlana Alexievich interviewed hundreds of people (firefighters, disaster-cleanup technicians, and innocent citizens alike) affected by the meltdown. She presents these interviews in monologue... more

Craig MazinThese are sources I found fascinating and useful. Not ALL of them, but a bunch. First up, obviously... Svetlana Alexievich's Voices From Chernobyl. Absolutely essential, and heartbreaking, reading. There's a reason Ms. Alexievich has a Nobel Prize. (Source)

Kate BrownIt’s a very beautiful work and I think it gives you the emotional landscape of how people dealt with their anxieties, fears, the health problems that ensued, and their growing sense of disillusionment with their political leaders and the Communist party. (Source)

Rebecca AltmanWhat follows events like Chernobyl is a politics of measurement. Who counts? What counts? Who does the counting? How are boundaries drawn for the purposes of counting and comparing? And what is discounted, or never counted at all? (Source)

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A Documentary Story

A documentary account of the Chernobyl disaster of April 1986, this is based on interviews with many of the participants. Shcherbak considers Chernobyl to be the most important event in the USSR since World War II and felt compelled to go and live there and interview those involved. less
Recommended by Craig Mazin, and 1 others.

Craig MazinChernobyl: A Documentary Story by Iurii Scherbak has some amazing stuff from a Ukrainian and Soviet perspective, including some remarkable exchanges with Legasov himself. (Source)

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At 01:23:40 on April 26th 1986, Alexander Akimov pressed the emergency shutdown button at Chernobyl’s fourth nuclear reactor. It was an act that forced the permanent evacuation of a city, killed thousands and crippled the Soviet Union. The event spawned decades of conflicting, exaggerated and inaccurate stories.

This book, the result of five years of research, presents an accessible but comprehensive account of what really happened. From the desperate fight to prevent a burning reactor core from irradiating eastern Europe, to the self-sacrifice of the heroic men who entered fields...
Recommended by Brad Feld, Craig Mazin, and 2 others.

Brad Feld@leatherbarr0w It's pretty awesome. I just bought your book. (Source)

Craig MazinAndrew's book is a fantastic combination of travelogue and historic and scientific recounting of the Chernobyl disaster, and I found it incredibly helpful. Plus... he's a great guy! Buy this one! (Source)

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