Carlos Mendoza's Reviews > Sex on the Moon: The Amazing Story Behind the Most Audacious Heist in History

Sex on the Moon by Ben Mezrich
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's review
Dec 21, 11

Read in December, 2011

I live a humble, very happy, stay-between-the-lines kind of life. So, I use television and books for vicarious thrills--crime dramas, zombies, espionage--you name it. These stories, whether fact or fiction, are always light years away from my reality but entertaining nonetheless.

Then along comes a story that hits close enough to my reality to really draw me in. "Sex on the Moon" is such a tale. I've been fascinated by our manned space program since childhood, following the details of our space exploration closely. I've been on the Houston NASA campus as a tourist many times. I've touched the moon rock that they have on display in the visitors center. (They let you barely touch it after snaking your fingers through opposing glass panels.) I've dreamed of what it must be like to train like an Astronaut. And I dare to admit that sometimes I indulge myself in flights of fantastic imaginings of what it would be like to pull off a heist, though never of this magnitude.

Put that all together and "Sex on the Moon" strikes the perfect chord for a guy like me. Expertly written with the kind of style best suited for this tale, with the perfect balance of the main character's backstory with the tension-filled drama of the caper itself. It's a sweaty-palmed page turner, instead of a forensic true-crime deconstruction.

As I finished, I found it difficult to admit to myself that, despite Thad being an genius-idiot that threw his whole future away for a flight of fancy, who stole a priceless treasure, and who may have set back the life's work of top scientists, I still thought he was cool as all hell. Antihero's are popular these days, and I suppose as long as we remember the real heroes in the world, like the astronauts and scientists that made it all possible, it's OK to leave a little room to admire a big-dreamer who made a terrible mistake and paid a hefty price.


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