The Atomic Weight of Love follows Meridian, an intelligent and brilliant young woman, from the age of seventeen when she’s starting university in 1941, to the present day when she’s in her eighties.
While at university she falls in love with an older man, Alden, an intelligent but mysterious professor. They end up getting married and she follows him to Los Alamos where he’s working on a secret project (which we later find out is the atomic bomb). For him she gives up her hopes of studying for a PhD and of furthering her career in ornithology (the study of birds).
We follow our main character through the decades as she makes and loses friends, falls into temptation with a younger man and deals with the changing roles and increasing power of being a woman.
This novel is many things – it definitely has a feminist slant as Meridian promotes this throughout her story. At the end of the book we learn what she is up to in her later years and it really is fantastic.
It’s also a very erotic novel in parts, as we’re with her as she discovers the power and freedom of sex and truly explores it for the first time. Continue Reading