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Light This Candle: The Life and Times of Alan Shepard by [Neal Thompson]

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Light This Candle: The Life and Times of Alan Shepard Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 79 ratings

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Length: 578 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"One of the finest books ever written about the space program. On nearly every page of this fine book, I learned something new. Neal has given Shepard's unique humanity a chance to emerge from not only the legend that NASA built around him but the one he built around himself. Alan Shepard, it turns out we didn't know you, after all. Light this candle, indeed." —Homer Hickam, author of Rocket Boys

“Wonderful and gripping ...The can’t-put-it-down story of a modern swashbuckler determined to conquer the universe whatever the risk. In Thompson’s hands, an amazing life, the ultimate American life, comes alive so exquisitely.” —Buzz Bissinger, New York Times bestselling author of Friday Night Lights

“Why don’t you fix your little problem and light this candle.” —Alan Shepard to NASA technicians, at liftoff for America’s first manned spaceflight

“Just what a biography should be: sharp, evocative, and brisk.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Thompson provides the fullest portrait [of Shepard] yet. Does much to illuminate the life and personality of perhaps the most private and complex member of the Mercury Seven.” —Library Journal


From the Trade Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

The 15-minute Freedom 7 flight in 1961 made astronaut Alan Shepard America's first man in space and its first hero of the space age. Later he made history by playing golf on the moon during the Apollo 14 mission. But journalist Thompson reveals another side of this all-American navy pilot with the right stuff. Although married for more than 50 years, Shepard had an eye for the prettiest girl in a room. Even longtime colleagues found him a hard man to get to know. The "Icy Commander" could be charming and helpful one minute, steely-eyed and "reaming them out" the next. Thompson traces Shepard's life from a New Hampshire childhood, when he was captivated with flying, to a lackluster career at Annapolis, where he frequently bent the rules, then his goal of becoming a jet pilot. Thompson shines a light on the very private Shepard's career between his Mercury and Apollo days, when he was earthbound by Menière's disease, which affected his equilibrium. In retirement, Shepard amazed everyone (except probably his devoted wife, Louise) by energetically embracing philanthropic causes before succumbing to leukemia at age 74. Thompson doesn't reveal much that die-hard space junkies don't already know about Shepard's often contentious relationship with his Mercury 7 colleagues, especially John Glenn, but his is a snappily written, factual counterbalance to Tom Wolfe's sometimes poetic renderings of the heroes of the early space program. Space buffs and baby boomers who remember Shepard's gravity-escaping flight should snap it up. 16 pages of b&w photos not seen by PW.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN : B000XUAEGM
  • Publisher : Crown; Reprint edition (December 18, 2007)
  • Publication date : December 18, 2007
  • Language: : English
  • File size : 2805 KB
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Screen Reader : Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Not Enabled
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 578 pages
  • Page numbers source ISBN : 140008122X
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 79 ratings

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
79 global ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on August 27, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on September 17, 2012
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Reviewed in the United States on October 26, 2015
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Reviewed in the United States on July 29, 2009
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Reviewed in the United States on November 24, 2020
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Top reviews from other countries

Clipper 314
5.0 out of 5 stars oustanding !
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 15, 2011
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JZ MAYO
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 13, 2014
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Xenophon12
5.0 out of 5 stars An intelligent biography, and more, on a flamboyant man and his time
Reviewed in France on October 4, 2015
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Braden
3.0 out of 5 stars Good not great.
Reviewed in Canada on June 17, 2014
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Rosanna Lugmao
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book..
Reviewed in Canada on October 12, 2018
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