- Paperback: 275 pages
- Publisher: Random House (October 29, 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0812991850
- ISBN-13: 978-0812991857
- Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 51 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #899,717 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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First Light: The Search for the Edge of the Universe
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"There is a saying among astronomers that five billion people concern themselves with the surface of the Earth, and ten thousand with everything else," writes Richard Preston, best-selling author of The Hot Zone. And if you think these professional stargazers spend most of their time serenely peering into the night sky, guess again. Today's astronomers are world-class gadgeteers who scurry about giant (and often frigid) observatories tinkering with the mechanical and electronic tools of their trade. In First Light, they tangle with the Hale Telescope, one of the world's oldest and largest. This beautifully written book is highly recommended for anybody interested in astronomy. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From School Library Journal
YA As the title suggests, this is a book on astronomy, but it is also a great deal more than that. Nominally, First Light is about the efforts of a group of astronomers who are attempting to map the edge of the known universe. Because the sheer size of the numbers and concepts involved in astronomy have an almost universal gee-whiz fascination, that subject is interesting reading all by itself. What really makes this book something special, however, are the portraits of the people involved: how they approach their work, how they interact with each other. What is made clear in First Light is that for all their genius, for all their magnificent achievements, these astronomers are just like the rest of us: subject to the same emotions and frustrations, foibles and shortcomings. With no index or bibliography, this is not a book for students who just want to get through their next science report, nor is it intended to be. Karl Penny , Houston Public Lib .
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
This book tells a modern tale of astronomy with some of the leading astrophysicists in the world. He also had a chance to visit and interview some of the people responsible for the building of the Palomar telescope. He even found one of the lens grinders, still alive at home in southern California.
A great read!
'First Light' follows two different groups of people: one working at the famed Palomar Telescope in Pasadena; the other, Carolyn and Eugene Shoemaker of the Shoemaker Comets fame. The book is rich with detail and lovingly paints a picture of the kindly, eccentric and brilliant people who inhabit that world. Especially wonderful are the analogies that help you understand how large the universe is when compared to objects around us (i.e., "Imagine the sun the size of the dot on this i. . .").
No, the writing isn't flawless, but the depth of detail and the easy flow of the narrative will keep you reading. . .
Highly recommended for all ages.