The Author

Joel Achenbach

Joel Achenbach is a staff writer for The Washington Post and the author of six previous books, including Captured by Aliens and Why Things Are. He has been a monthly science columnist for National Geographic magazine and a commentator on National Public Radio’s Morning Edition. He lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and three children.

Achenbach is a science writer and explanatory journalist. He covered this story daily for The Washington Post, interviewing everyone from BP head Bob Dudley to Energy Secretary Steve Chu to rank and file ROV pilots. He flew to the disaster site on a helicopter and witnessed the response up close. He was twice in the BP war room and covered the fact-finding hearings devoted to finding the cause of the disaster. No one is better positioned to bring the story alive and make the technical and scientific aspects of this clear to the lay reader. The thrust of this book is to capture the technological and scientific complexity and let the reader be present at the greatest engineering crisis of the century so far.

View Joel Achenbach’s PBS Interviews

Oil Gusher Halted At Least For Now: ‘Something Went Right’

BP Works to Install New Cap on Broken Oil Well