The Bomb Doctor: A Scientist's Story of Bombers, Beakers, and Bloodhounds

The Bomb Doctor: A Scientist's Story of Bombers, Beakers, and Bloodhounds

The Bomb Doctor: A Scientist's Story of Bombers, Beakers, and Bloodhounds

The Bomb Doctor: A Scientist's Story of Bombers, Beakers, and Bloodhounds


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A rare peek behind the curtain into boots-on-the-ground, in-the-lab scientific bomb forensics—told with humanity, heart, and even a bit of humor.

This is not CSI. What you encounter as a true bomb detective—or “Bomb Doctor,” as some in the FBI call me—are fields of twisted metal containing soot-covered fragments intermingled with human remains. You have carnage and chaos. As you wade into that sea of wailing sirens and screaming survivors awash with the stench of diesel fuel and decaying bodies, your job is to ferret out forensic clues in a type of macabre scavenger hunt to ultimately reconstruct the scene and the explosive device and determine what happened and what the bomb looked like before it was torn asunder.

None of this happens overnight. Nor does it happen in a timeframe that can be neatly packaged in an hour-long made-for-TV drama. The scavenger hunt can take months—or, in the case of the infamous Collar Bomber, seven painstaking years. The work is worth every second and every horrific image that etches itself into your brain because it helps prevent new horrors. Not all, obviously. We are not superheroes. But unlike shooters, who often just “snap” or seem to act out in random ways, bombers almost always have a story—one that follows an arc.

In The Bomb Doctor, my goal is to explain that arc, explode myths, reconstruct reality, and build an understanding of the reason and means behind the mayhem, as well as pull back the curtain on the investigative process that brings bombers to justice.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9798888452974
Publisher: Regalo Press
Publication date: 05/21/2024
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

About the Author

Dr. Kirk Yeager received his BS in Chemistry from Lafayette College and PhD in Inorganic Chemistry from Cornell University. He worked as a research scientist and became the associate director of R&D at the Energetic Materials Research and Testing Center (EMRTC) in Socorro, New Mexico. While in the Land of Enchantment, he also held the position of adjunct professor in the New Mexico Tech chemistry department. For ten years, he served as a physical scientist and forensic examiner for the FBI Laboratory’s Explosives Unit, where he deployed as a bombing crime scene investigator to dozens of countries. Currently, Dr. Yeager is the FBI’s chief explosives scientist. Dr. Yeager has nearly thirty years of experience with improvised explosives and IEDs. Over the course of his colorful career, he has served as a subject matter expert for the National Academies of Sciences, worked as a technical adviser for MythBusters, and been the subject of a feature article in Popular Mechanics. He is an avid geocacher and holds the rank of Black Belt in Danzan Ryu Jujitsu. His academic prowess is surpassed only by his charm and humility.

Selene Yeager is Kirk Yeager’s sister. At least that’s how high school teachers referred to her, right after “Ron Yeager’s daughter,” until everyone realized that she was a little bit like them...and a whole lot of something different. Terrible at chemistry and good at sneaking out of the house, she was single-minded in the pursuit of two things: riding a bike and expressing herself in the written word. The former has taken her around the world. The latter has helped her build a career in storytelling and journalism and as author, coauthor, and contributor to nearly thirty books, granted her a nomination for a National Magazine Award for excellence in service journalism, and given her the great honor of bringing her brother’s work to the world through this book.
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