Loralee's Reviews > How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming

How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming by Mike Brown
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May 31, 12


There's hard work, intrigue (when some Spanish astronomers try to steal the scoop on the announcement of a new object in space), tension (when the IAU meets to decide once and for all the fate of Pluto), romance (the author misleads his intended by verbally condemning engagement rings before popping the question with a carefully pre-bought ring), and even some obsessive parenting (the author complains extensively that no one can tell him the statistical spread for how many babies get born before, on, and after their due dates, and later charts his daughter's feeding and sleep time). This memoir of how Mike Brown decided to discover a new planet, and ended up finding so many that the definition of planet had to be redone, is surprisingly readable, and gets downright exciting at times (at least to someone who was obsessed with astronomy in seventh grade, who actually took a class about planetary astronomy at BYU, and who, in deference to this former passion, made the family drive 1000 miles to see the recent solar eclipse.) You put down the book feeling as you might after the retirement of an especially dear hero: nostalgic for Pluto's good run, but understanding.
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