The Radioactive Boyscout: The Frightening True Story of a Whiz Kid and His Homemade Nuclear Reactor by Ken Silverstein

This book was freaking scary! Why? Because the whole thing is actually true. I know some titles use literary license and include the word “true” in a fictional story, but this is straight-up non-fiction… Even though it sounds a lot more like Sci-Fi in some parts.

A socially-awkward kid with a penchant for science projects decides he wants to build a nuclear reactor. Using really old textbooks (which downplay safety and give WAY too much information), and via correspondence with top scientists (posing as a professor), he is able to actually figure out how to obtain radioactive materials with which to begin his experiment. He manages to keep his activities secret — even from his parents and his girlfriend. He gets far enough that the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), the NRC (Nuclear Regulatory Commission), and the FBI need to work together to dispose of the shed in which he performed his experiments. Oh yeah… And he still refuses to be tested to see the extent to which radioactivity from his experiments has damaged his body. Come on… You know you wanna read it!

Happy Reading!


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