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Dragonfly: NASA And The Crisis Aboard Mir Hardcover – December 1, 1998

4.7 out of 5 stars 73 ratings

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  • Dragonfly: NASA And The Crisis Aboard Mir
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  • Off the Planet: Surviving Five Perilous Months Aboard the Space Station Mir
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Bryan Burrough, coauthor of the bestselling Barbarians at the Gate, has a talent for reworking factual accounts so they read like first-rate thrillers. Dragonfly: NASA and the Crisis Aboard Mir is overwhelming in its scope and breadth of detail, culled from one-on-one interviews and transcripts of recorded conversations between the astronauts and cosmonauts on Mir and Russian Mission Control. Burrough delves deeply into the personal and professional lives of the 11 people who lived aboard Mir from 1995 to 1998. What we soon discover is simultaneously disheartening and fascinating: the men and women who would be astronauts must run a gauntlet of hazings, are judged professionally on their personal lives, and win flight assignments through serendipity as often as through hard work. NASA is controlled by cliques and cults of personality: "People don't speak out, because George makes short work of you if you do.... If you get on his bad side, you won't get a flight assignment...." There are "issues dealing with training and the selection of crews that you don't dare speak up about." The down-to-the-last-bolt descriptions of life aboard the station, from what the air smells like to an explanation of "penguin suits" to the distance between the dinner table and the original, now seldom-used toilet--2 feet--will thrill space enthusiasts. Space may not be "where no man has gone before" anymore, but it nevertheless provides endless dream fodder for those of us left behind on Earth. --Jhana Bach

Review

(Bryan Burrough's) book will probably become required reading, and entertaining reading, for anyone who wants to understand the dysfunction of (NASA). -- Peter Maas, Washington Post

Burrough ... writes like a dream ... (t)his book - the best of its kind in the past five years - deserves a larger audience than it has received so far. -- Alex Beam, The Boston Globe

Frightening, informative and silkily readable. -- New Yorker Magazine

I'm embarrassed by how much I enjoyed this book... Burrough writes brilliantly... "Dragonfly" is the best account of the interplay of American and Russian cultures to appear in years. -- Alex Beam, The Boston Globe

Mr Burrough has written one of the most absorbing space books in some time -- Thomas Mallon, The Wall Street Journal

He succeeds in spinning a gripping yarn out of his remarkably candid conversations with both countries' Mir crews, managers and flight controllers. -- The New York Times Book Review, Andrew Chaikin

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ HarperCollins; 1st edition (December 1, 1998)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 544 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0887307833
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0887307836
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 2 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6.13 x 1.61 x 9.25 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 73 ratings

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
73 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on August 20, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on May 23, 2013
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Top reviews from other countries

L. Lane
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating insight into Mir
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 29, 2013
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Steve J.
4.0 out of 5 stars A great read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 11, 2011
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Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars The book is better ... No, this is the movie
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 29, 2015
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Micheal O Doibhilin
4.0 out of 5 stars Valuable book on the subject
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 20, 2014
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Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in Canada on March 18, 2018
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