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Summer Stargazing: A Practical Guide for Recreational Astronomers Hardcover – April 2, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Gr. 6^-10. Dickinson, editor of SkyNews magazine and author of Exploring the Night Sky (1987), offers an informative, useful, and beautiful guide to observing the summer night sky above North America. Illustrated with charts, many full-color photographs, including excellent ones by the author, this large-format book features succinct, readable discussions of topics such as binoculars, telescopes, observation sites, moon watching, stargazing, comets, auroras, eclipses, meteor showers, and identifying constellations. Beyond the information provided, the book's most useful feature is its presentation of sky charts. In a series of spreads, seven segments of the night sky are shown with duplicate photos on facing pages. The left-hand page shows a star-studded section of the night sky. On the right page, the same section of sky (somewhat lighter to facilitate labeling) appears with the constellations delineated by connect-the-dot lines and the major stars and star groups labeled. Featuring charts for early summer as well as late summer and succinct discussions of sky sights and phenomena, this is precise, readable, and handsomely produced. Carolyn Phelan

Review

An unusually attractive and straightforward introduction to the heavens. (Scientific American)

An informative, useful, and beautiful guide to observing the summer night sky above North America. Illustrated with charts, many full-color photographs, including excellent ones by the author, this large-format book features succinct, readable discussions of topics such as binoculars, telescopes, observation sites, moon watching, stargazing, comets, auroras, eclipses, meteor showers, and identifying constellations ... This is precise, readable, and handsomely produced. (Carolyn Phelan Booklist 1996-07-19)
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 - 12
  • Lexile Measure: 1270L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Firefly Books (April 2, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1552090140
  • ISBN-13: 978-1552090145
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 0.4 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,230,652 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Pam Stratton (pjvanstrat@aol.com) on April 23, 1998
Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent guide to the night sky. It is great for kids and adults alike. I especially like the use of actual photos of the sky with and without diagrams of the constellations (not just charts or drawings.) This makes it much easier to find them in the sky.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cirrus1500 on January 10, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This book is a handy book with nice pictures for starters . There should be more materials than these as the pages are filled with more pictures than words and too little explainations. There are too little detail or advice or tips said about stargazing as the main subject. Conslusion: Good, but should contain about 50% more materials and advices/details.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like many of you, I've long grown accustomed to diminished observing under a light polluted night sky. Sure, I can usually trace the major constellations and still find the best and brightest Messier objects. Yet, I hadn't realized my viewing deficiency until I had the benefit of an exceptionally dark night sky, far from city lights. There, I was lost, overwhelmed by a stellar grandeur that obliterated my limited sense of what I thought was there. I went scurrying for works that would come to my rescue. Few did, even the elaborate observing guides I had with me.

I found this one at the Air & Space Museum. Wow! For me, the price is worth it for just the wide field star images on pages 24-47. Even more so, the "close-up" photo swaths on pages 38, 40 and 44 I have turned to time and again for revealing deep sky treasures in the context of their placement in the Summer Triangle, and the richness of the Scorpius and Saggitarius regions.

If you have the occasional privilige to look into a truly dark summer night sky, this work can be your faithful seeing eye dog. I carry it with me along with my higher priced observing encyclopedias to keep me mindful of all that is there in the spendid Mily Way.

The balance of the book is helpful more for begininners and an excellent introduction for those who want to sample observing the summer night sky. Be aware that planetary positions are only through the year 2010 (I've never used that section anyway). But, even for this guy who owns an 8" scope, I won't be without "Summer Stargazing" under dark summmer sky observing. I pack it right along with several of the deep sky observing tomes each summer.
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Format: Hardcover
If you are ages 10-15, or an adult who wants to get "up to speed" on astronomy-speak in under a 5 hour read -- this is the book to own! This chronology of major astrological events to look for in the sky which comes at the end of the book is outdated by a few years due to the publish date, but the sky charts (actually full page photos) -- specifically and only for summer months in the U.S. -- were actually usable! Also useful was the section on purchasing a telescope for a novice or even decent binoculars (a $50 investment to start was recommended, imagine that!). Also, a handy refernce for dates of meteor showers is a great thing for kids in large groups. And for a freeze-baby who lives in a northern climate who only takes the time to stargaze on warm, summer, cloudless nights, this is the only book I need.
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