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In the Shadow of the Moon: A Challenging Journey to Tranquility, 1965-1969 (Outward Odyssey: A People's History of S) Paperback – June 1, 2010

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In the Shadow of the Moon: A Challenging Journey to Tranquility, 1965-1969 (Outward Odyssey: A People's History of S) + Into That Silent Sea: Trailblazers of the Space Era, 1961-1965 (Outward Odyssey: A People's History of S) + Footprints in the Dust: The Epic Voyages of Apollo, 1969-1975 (Outward Odyssey: A People's History of S)
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The Gemini program has always been NASA's quiet, superachieving middle child, overshadowed by the space cowboys of the Mercury years and Apollo's lunar prospectors. French, an executive at Sally Ride Science, and Burgess, author of Fallen Astronauts, chronicle the missions on which American astronauts learned how to live in space for more than a few hours; steer a spacecraft around the Earth at almost 20,000 miles an hour; rendezvous with a companion ship; and navigate to another world and return safely. The authors relate that during the early Gemini missions, in the mid-'60s, several crews came close to ending in tragedy before NASA had the bright idea to have Buzz Aldrin practice in a Baltimore swimming pool for the final flight, Gemini 12. The book also covers the Apollo program and the U.S.S.R.'s simultaneous space efforts. Although the authors interviewed surviving astronauts, family members and NASA staff for some fresh material, space aficionados will know most of this saga by heart. For young readers born decades after man last walked on the moon, this is a readable introduction to the first years of America's leap into space. Illus. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"President Kennedy's goal of landing a man on the Moon was achieved only because of 15 trailblazing Gemini and Apollo missions flown during four dynamic years of trial and discovery described in this meticulously researched book. [In the Shadow of the Moon] truly captures the spirit and culture of those who won the race to the Moon."--Dave Scott, commander of the Apollo 15 mission<br /><br />"French and Burgess present a first-rate, detailed, and very personal account of the space race to the moon. . . . Strongly recommended both as a study of the social interactions among this unique group of people and as a gripping series of anecdotes that describe the exciting, dangerous steps behind the successful moon landing."--Choice<br /><br />"The writers have gone beyond old soviet propaganda to tell the untold stories of heroic cosmonauts through new and recent interviews. This volume captures the anxiety and haste shown by both nations at the height of the space race . . . . This series will be read by future generations when they want the complete perspectives of the original generation of space explorers."--Space Times<br /><br />"This book has everything you ever wanted to know about the astronauts that paved the way for the first Moon landing. Rarely does one get the entire information of Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programmes, encased in one book, about the men who entered the dangerous and untried realm of flying off the Earth."--Jeff Green, Liftoff<br /><br />"For both space superpowers, human spaceflight was filled with remarkable triumphs as they strove to place the first person on the moon. There were also devastating tragedies to overcome. Through diligent research and pivotal interviews the authors recount that extraordinary era in this superbly crafted and eminently readable book."--Rex Hall, MBE, former president of the British Interplanetary Society<br /><br />"Our lives and those of future generations were forever transformed by the events so vividly related in this book. These were the tense, often inspiring days of pioneering human space travel, and the authors are to be congratulated for their unerring portrayals of many larger-than-life personalities involved in that historic endeavor." --Cece Bibby, first woman to work at the Mercury launch pad

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Product Details

  • Series: Outward Odyssey: A People's History of S
  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Bison Books (June 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0803229798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0803229792
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #487,728 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 55 people found the following review helpful By KevMac on July 31, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I've been reading space history books since my earliest days, as I grew up in the first decade of the space program - and yet many of these stories are new to me. I've read almost every astronaut book that's come out over the last 35 years and this book, along with "Into That Silent Sea," tells the manned space flight story like no books before. I love it so much I'm going to go back and read the first one next. I took my time reading "In the Shadow of the Moon", as the book is like a very fine wine that can't be hurried through. I needed to take small sips of each chapter and savor the history and never-before-told personal stories. My thanks to the authors for putting this history and these memories to paper and sharing them with the rest of us; I'm glad the subjects shared their time and memories.
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45 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Dee O'Hara on October 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Another great book on the Golden years of Spaceflight . Francis and Colin really have the "right stuff". Their insight and facts of the events are spot on and they have made the telling of each flight just as interesting and exciting as the previous one. Not an easy chore. I had forgotten how perilous the EVA's were and they brought back such vivid memories of them. Both "Into the Silent Sea" and "In The Shadow of the Moon" are terrific reads and a great way to "experience it all". I owe the authors a debt of gratitude for writing and accurately documenting these historical flights.
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44 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Tahir Rahman on November 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
French and Burgess have written a wonderful book with lots of vivid details. For example, I was captivated by reading Gene Cernan's account of the intense pain and difficulty he had during the his Gemini EVA.

The vividness and suspense flows well. The editing is excellent. A must have book for any serious space history buff.

Tahir Rahman, author of We Came in Peace for all Mankind
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37 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Guzman on October 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the book you have been looking for.

This is a fantastic book, accounting the details and nuances of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo astronauts and their missions. Mr. Francis French and co-author Colin Burgess has taken just another telling of human space flight and created a new track - infused in it the personal thoughts, sentiments and reflections of ordinary men doing extra-ordinary feats. One does not quickly skim through this document, but instead slowly take in what the astronauts are telling us.

The authors gained the confidence and respect from the astronauts to share with them data, information and personal experiences not found anywhere else. I found myself lost in reading about the never before known aspects of the pioneers of the Mercury and Gemini programs - testing never before used technology and crews sharing their often near disastrous incidents. This is where man learned how to fly in space, with the Gemini capsule being the most maneuverable craft...even by todays standards. Questions we often asked ourselves about conditions in the crew cabin, conflicts with NASA administration or more private (and sometimes embarrassing), events/incidents are answered in this work.

I had the honor to interview Mr. French while he was Chicago, and he brought new insights and narration to the book and companion film. Sharing with me his own experiences in researching, interviewing and documenting forever the words of the astronauts, he demonstrated his love and passion for his work.
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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Shell in Space on November 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I just reviewed the authors' previous publication, Into That Silent Sea: Trailblazers of the Space Era, 1961-1965 (Outward Odyssey: A People's History of S), and I absolutely had to write a review for this one, as well. I am an educator at a major astronomy and space museum, and "In the Shadow of the Moon" and "Into that Silent Sea" are two books that we will be purchasing for our spaceflight docents as resource books. The books are fabulous and you won't want to put them down. I sure didn't. When I got to the section about the Apollo 1 tragedy, the tears started flowing. I knew a bit about what happened, but not everything I learned from this book. Absolutely amazing interviewing and writing. Please buy these books if you want first-hand accounts of Russian and U.S. space history. We're getting farther and farther from that era as the years pass, and the largest tragedy would be that people would forget what happened.
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By G. Robson on January 12, 2008
Format: Hardcover
There are and have been hundreds if not thousands of books about manned spaceflight over the years but only a select few have really been able to communicate the true story and feeling generated by one of the most fondly remembered era's in American history. A time most commonly remembered as being one of technological marvel. However the true story is one of the men & Women who supported and flew the missions. This book goes deeper into the "Golden era" or manned spaceflight and tells stories that have never been told all the while keeping the reader enthralled. It touches on subjects long since forgotten or ignored and brings them to the fore. With first hand interviews with the people involved the authors really touch on the human aspect. I was especially taken by surprise that they told the story the way it should be. Not just the American effort, but the Russians too as there story never really gets told. I have read many books on spaceflight and I can honestly say this is one of only a few books that have kept me addicted and wanting to come back for more. Buy this book. You will not be disappointed. Even if you are not interested in manned spaceflight buy this book as you will be by the end. It reminds us all why we were interested in spaceflight to begin with. For a long long time the Book A Man on the Moon by Andrew Chaikin was the book to beat. This is no longer the case.
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