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We Seven: By the Astronauts Themselves
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We Seven: By the Astronauts Themselves

4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  320 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
The pioneer astronauts who took America into space tell their personal stories about the challenges they faced, their fears, joys, friendships & successes. Chosen from hundreds of crackerjack pilots for their fitness, intelligence & courage, the original Mercury Seven astronauts risked their lives to cross the space frontier. In We Seven they take readers behind th ...more
Hardcover, 1st, 465 pages
Published 1962 by Simon & Schuster (NY)
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Rebecca
Aug 31, 2015 Rebecca rated it really liked it
I gave to his book 4 stars not because it was all great writing but it was honest or as honest as a bunch of military test pilots turned pioneer astronauts could be. They were asked to do something, go somewhere that no one had ever gone. it was the ground floor of the space program, a time of adventure, risk, challenge, national pride, innocents. it was before tragedy, financial debate, cultural strife, age. All but one of these men is now gone and why they were not perfect they had guts and th ...more
Nick Penzenstadler
Jan 30, 2017 Nick Penzenstadler rated it it was ok
Learned the rich details behind the Mercury missions. John Glenn was a complete badass, but the other six were carbon copy explorers that pushed into a new frontier. Book is printed just after the missions, so comes with a 1961 perspective. I've been on a space kick recently with Hidden Figures and re-watching Apollo 13.
Ali Kutner
May 11, 2017 Ali Kutner rated it really liked it
Loved it! Didn't want to put it down! Great intro book into the genre of space travel- can't wait to read more! I thought the book taught just enough about each of the seven astronauts to bring an element of humanity to what they were doing.
James Montgomery
Jun 10, 2017 James Montgomery rated it it was amazing
Fabulous book about the Mercury program by the 7 astronauts themselves.
The Pittman
Mar 21, 2017 The Pittman rated it it was amazing
Godspeed John Glenn. Before they could fly in space, they had to invent the way to get there safely. This book focuses on the challenge, the celebrity and the ingenuity of the Mercury Seven. An awesome read for all space buffs.
Erik Graff
Jan 24, 2011 Erik Graff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: space program fans
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: sciences
It might be fair to say that I grew up with the Vietnam War and the space race, both of them substantially consequences of the Cold War. The space race came first, with the launching of Sputnik by the USSR in 1957 and of Yuri Gagarin in 1961. Both were much discussed, in the media and in school. Indeed, the school curriculum changed as the result of these and other Soviet firsts. Science and mathematics got more attention. Textbooks were supplemented by hastily printed materials about things lik ...more
срфкдшу
Aug 11, 2015 срфкдшу rated it it was amazing
We Seven follows the lives and experiences of seven American astronauts: M. Scott Carpenter, L. Gordon Cooper Jr., John H. Glenn Jr., Virgil I. Grissom, Walter M. Schirra Jr., Alan B Shepard Jr., and Donald K. Slayton. The main focus of the book is the astronauts training and experiences in, and for, space. The book describes specific challenges that each astronaut faced while in space. Each different astronaut’s part in the book is very detailed and worded uniquely, because it is actually writt ...more
Nikky
Nov 17, 2015 Nikky rated it it was ok
An astronomy professor once told me that "there's a reason astronauts aren't writers." We Seven feels like a book that was rushed to press to quell an insatiable thirst for knowledge about the Mercury program and the men behind it. Writing styles vary, but generally hue fairly closely to the kind of writing former test pilots would create.

Buried in the book are a few snippets of personality, a modicum of new and interesting facts about Mercury, and a smattering of sentimentality, but it's not a
...more
Darkpool (protesting GR censorship)
Dec 08, 2008 Darkpool (protesting GR censorship) rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: space program junkies
Really found this terribly interesting. There is so much detail here about the very start of the US manned space program that is omitted from later volumes. Certainly, there are also details we now know about the first Mercury flights which have been omitted from this book! It was a great curiosity to read something written so early in the story of the space program. How odd it was to have no mention of Neil Armstrong, the Apollo 1 fire, or all the other staples of the moon program story. Many o ...more
Mark
May 13, 2015 Mark rated it liked it
Shelves: history, biography
A collection of memoirs "by THE ASTRONAUTS themselves" (it says so on the cover) from the original Mercury 7 in 1962. A fascinating historical account of their backgrounds (including John Glenn's Korean war stories), training (including the MASTIF device in Cleveland that spins you on three axes simultaneously - even the expression head over heels doesn't do it justice), technical information about the capsule and boosters (you have to keep reminding yourself what they called a computer was in t ...more
Kathryn
Jan 09, 2017 Kathryn rated it really liked it
Like Gene Kranz' book, "Failure Is Not An Option," this book was very operationally oriented so it took me a very long time to get through it. As with all the other books I've read about the space race during the 1950's and '60's, this is an important read. Written by the astronauts themselves it was an early peek behind the scenes (written in 1962). Although all seven astronauts wrote the book, they only covered the first four Mercury flights. The book end a bit abruptly--I felt it could have u ...more
Mitchell Weiner
Jan 06, 2013 Mitchell Weiner rated it it was amazing
A fascinating book about the birth of the American space program and the seven men eventually chosen for the first American manned space flight which would be known as the Apollo program. Each astronaut has written a biographical chapter that does include a lot of technical jargon but is ultimately heartwarming, terrifying and thrilling in the end.

Despite the technical language and age of the book, it was written in 1962, it is a very easy and quick read and as compelling as any modern nonficti
...more
Sharon
Aug 29, 2013 Sharon rated it it was amazing
Having been born about two months before the moon landing, I have always been intrigued by the space program and especially the Mercury astronauts who started it all. This is a wonderful book written in the early 60's by the astronauts themselves and does a great job of explaining how they were all chosen and how working as a team they accomplished so much together in so little time... Recommend to anyone who is interested in NASA and the astronauts !!!
James Pittman
Feb 25, 2013 James Pittman rated it it was amazing
Journey into the final frontier when manned space flight was still by the seat of your pants. Look into the eyes and hearts of the pioneering men who made America's first ventures into the Final Frontier. This book gives you a unique view into the men who not only made the journey, but also helped shape the spacecraft and rockets they would eventually ride into space with. This is an outstanding book for both history and space buffs.
Margaret
They should have called this John Glenn and the Other Six. This was published in 1962, after the Mercury missions, and far more attention is paid to Glenn's mission than to any of the others, while he's listed as the author of six of the book's twenty-six chapters. It's definitely a valuable addition to our space library and a engaging look at the astronauts and the program, but I could wish that it had been less Glenn-centric.
Pamela Mckinnon
May 20, 2015 Pamela Mckinnon rated it really liked it
I enjoy reading true stories of great people, accomplishing great things, and these men certainly qualify-as well as being GOOD men-always a plus. Fascinating detail (but them I'm surrounded by engineers in my family) regarding the actual equipment and mission, as well as backgroud of the men's lives, education, and careers. The only criticism I had was that it got difficult to re-read the same accounts several times, as the different astronauts all weighed in individually often.
Janet
Oct 06, 2012 Janet rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Definitely an in-depth look at the very early stages of the space program. I had not realized the years and years of strenuous, detailed, exhaustive training that the first seven astronauts went through and how badly they wanted to be the pioneering explorers of space. I'm not a huge space fan, per se, so it was a look at an unfamiliar topic that I'm pleased to have had the chance to read. It makes the lunar landing all that more unbelievable to know how the Mercury program got started.
Elie Harriett
Sep 16, 2012 Elie Harriett rated it it was amazing
This is a collection of memoirs from the original seven astronauts in the Mercury Seven program. It is very technically minded, but I found I couldn't put it down. Even though the writers took great pains to give a very factual description of what was happening, the book is a thrilling guide to the very beginnings (literally -- the beginnings) of manned spaceflight.
Mike Thorne
May 26, 2013 Mike Thorne rated it liked it
An interesting read not least for the bizarre sanitisation of the early space programme. If you're interested in the history though I'd suggest any of the books written later and more honestly, there are several including Al Shepards after the moon landing.
Rebecca
Sep 21, 2012 Rebecca rated it liked it


I read The Right Stuff immediately before reading this book, and the differences between the two are fascinating. The Right Stuff seems to be a much more honest description of the astronauts in the Mercury program and of the program itself, but We Seven is completely sanitized.
Janet
Dec 27, 2009 Janet rated it really liked it
Written by original 7 US astronauts. Great detail of their experiences. They were able to explain complicated, technical information in a very understandable way. Good read. Bit slow in places, but I enjoyed it.
Joel
Jun 05, 2012 Joel rated it liked it
Shelves: apollo-nasa
very good read. It was great to here from all the astronauts about what they went through. Glenn, Carpenter when they went around the earth and there experiences while in there ship was great. If you like what NASA was like when it started you will enjoy this book.
Rob Roy
Aug 10, 2009 Rob Roy rated it liked it
Shelves: biographical
Not as exciting as I would have liked, but the astronauts were all the rage
J.C.
got to about page 90 before I quit. real boring, poorly written. the ghost writer could have used a ghost writer. would rather read THE RIGHT STUFF or OF A FIRE ON THE MOON.
Danielle
I told mom she could borrow this book as long as she didn't bend back the spine...
Dave
Dec 27, 2015 Dave rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. It was very informative. However, it is (was) very much a propaganda piece for space program.
flannery
Jun 27, 2012 flannery rated it really liked it
After reading a lot of Carl Sagan it's kind of nice to read a really banal book about outer space.
Leora
Leora rated it it was ok
Aug 25, 2011
Robert Gonko
Robert Gonko rated it really liked it
Jul 01, 2014
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Malcolm Scott Carpenter (May 1, 1925 – October 10, 2013) was an American test pilot, astronaut, and aquanaut. He was one of the original seven astronauts selected for NASA's Project Mercury in April 1959. Carpenter was the second American to orbit the Earth and the fourth American in space, following Alan Shepard, Gus Grissom, and John Glenn.
More about Scott Carpenter...

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