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In the Shadow of the Moon: A Challenging Journey to Tranquility, 1965-1969

4.41  ·  Rating details ·  207 ratings  ·  25 reviews
In the Shadow of the Moon tells the story of the most exciting and challenging years in spaceflight, with two superpowers engaged in a titanic struggle to land one of their own people on the moon. While describing awe-inspiring technical achievements, the authors go beyond the missions and the competition of the space race to focus on the people who made it all possible. ...more
Hardcover, 448 pages
Published September 1st 2007 by University of Nebraska Press
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Start your review of In the Shadow of the Moon: A Challenging Journey to Tranquility, 1965-1969
When I was in my teens, I had a poster showing Earthrise – a photo, I know now, by Bill Anders – with the quote "Someday I would liketo stand on the moon, look through a quarter of a million miles of space and say There certainly is a beautiful Earth out tonight." I loved that poster; I don't know what happened to it, but to my joy I found a close facsimile online, reminded by this book to go look for it. I loved that quote – and I meant it. I was (and am) a Trekkie. I loved the shuttle program. ...more
Michael Jandrok
Mar 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I need to do a couple of housekeeping tasks before we get to the main review, so feel free to skip on down a couple of paragraphs if you have no interest in listening to me get on my personal soapbox and venting a bit.

First off, I’m a HUGE believer that math and science literacy in the United States should be a targeted focus for K-12 curriculums nationwide. Students in the United States suffer when compared to other countries around the world when it comes to math and science proficiency, and
Michael Flanagan
Apr 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science, history
In the Shadow of the Moon delivers an extremely well researched look at the race to put man on the moon. This is done by following the Gemini program through to Apollo 11. The authors also take a look at the Soviet Union’s efforts to beat the US to the moon.

What really stood out for me was the effort the authors took in not just telling the story of those astronaut’s we all know well but also shining the light on all the astronauts that went into space before them. They step the reader through
Jul 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is second of three books by Francis French and Colin Burgess covering the history of manned space exploration. It's an incredible book...telling an incredible story. It covers both US and Soviet space travel and provides a detailed account with comments from many of the astronauts and cosmonauts. I grew up near the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston and knew many people who worked for NASA. I thought I knew a lot about the Gemini and Apollo programs - this book's focus. I learned so much ...more
Jun 22, 2013 rated it liked it
A workmanlike look at the U.S. space program from 1965 to 1969, encompassing the Gemini program, the Apollo I tragedy and the first five flights of the Apollo program. This book is the second of a trilogy looking at the entirety of the race to the moon and its exploration by the United States.

Overall I enjoyed the book in the same way I enjoy a really well written Wikipedia entry. I get all the information I want, with the pleasure being the information itself and not so much the writing.

It was
Jun 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
Great book on the Apollo space program, although not the very best book of the many I have read on the subject, it is right up there near the top of the pile.

Apr 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Stories from the race-to-the-moon era, with lots of direct quotations from those who were there, on both the Soviet and American sides. I could have done with a little less detail on Donn Eisele’s personal life but enjoyed most of the rest of the book. I was surprised that the book ended so abruptly at Apollo 11 and treated it almost like a footnote. The author’s purpose seems to be to show how the other missions in the Apollo program led up to the first landing in a logical sequence, and to ...more
Dele Cooke
Aug 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Superbly told history
Roopkumar Balachandran
Aug 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The cover of the book caught my attention to pick up from the library. The book is about the race to reach Moon.

 photo Earth_Moon_zpspqawr6gr.jpg

Foreground is Moon and the crescent is the Earth. First photo of Earth from Moon. Image courtesy NASA.

It is well researched and the author has given much details about the space programs to put man on the moon, he also given the biography of each astronauts and selected cosmonauts in the space race. The vivid description of each mission is worth mentioning.

The description given for
May 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have a great interest in the space program, being a child of the 60's. I admit I was born in 69 on the Apollo 11 launch date, but always had the memory of my mother telling me often that she was making me watch the moon landing at the hospital. So I always had a fascination for the era which persists to this day. Listening to audiobooks on the subject, particularly the Apollo program, is a favorite pastime of mine. I was fortunate to be able to get a free copy of this from the narrator, but it ...more
Alex Mu
I’ll admit I have a lot of interest in space programs, and both the historical and current progress made in space exploration. Therefore the description of the book grabbed me right off the bat. I have read a number of space related books, both paper and audio, and this ranks high in that list. A lot of interesting facts, anecdotes, and stories that let you learn the different personalities of the mission teams, particularly the flight crews. I knew a lot of the problems encountered in the space ...more
Melissa Dwyer
Aug 13, 2015 rated it liked it
Originally rated G by Dale J. Bizub
In the Shadow of the Moon tells the story of the most exciting and challenging years in spaceflight, with two superpowers engaged in a titanic struggle to land one of their own people on the moon. While describing awe-inspiring technical achievements, the authors go beyond the missions and the competition of the space race to focus on the people who made it all possible. Their book explores the inspirations, ambitions, personalities, and experiences of the
May 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very good book on the history in human space flight. It is a long one considering it covers only the Gemini and early Apollo flights between 1965-1969. The events and the technicality are already well documented in many places, so the major differentiator of this book is its focus on the people. Many of its interviews look at what the astronauts went through from a personal stand point, both in the space and on earth.

I received the audiobook version for free from the narrator in exchange for a
Gary Willprecht
Mar 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Being very young when the Gemini flights were taking place, I was very interested in learning the tasks each Gemini mission set out to accomplish. We knew very little about travel in space, each mission added to our understanding of equipment needs, affects on the human body and technical know-how. Without that understanding, our men would have perished.

You can see some parallels taking place today as we set out to travel to Mars. We are sending probes to Mars to gather information about
Angela Joyce
Sep 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Like its predecessor, this book is a delight. Not only was I glad (or in one instance, devastated) to learn more of the fates of the astronauts from the first book, I greatly enjoyed learning more about the crews which came next. As before, they are presented as real, complex human beings, and it's easy to grow attached to them while reading both the narrative and their own accounts. The authors really know how to keep you reading!

Additionally, there are insights about the moon landing/moon
Apr 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, audio
I read quite a bit of non-fiction, but I haven't read much space history before -- so the book was very interesting, and I learned a lot. This was a very long audio book with lots and lots of details. The chapters were so long that they exceeded the length of the audible chapter files. The book was presented mostly chronologically, but with each new astronaut introduced often a biography from birth to death would be given. I had a difficult time figuring out why some astronauts were given so ...more
Nov 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone
I nicely written and researched book. Although this is a topic that I have read many accounts/vignettes of, this one added to my knowledge by digging out archives from both the US and Russia. How much new material? That's hard to say, but it's also about how different authors approach a topic. This author was different enough that I read it through without feeling that it was just another re-hash of familiar material.

A good reprise of the Apollo program and it's first successful landing on the
Leslie Fisher
I thought this was a really interesting book, and I enjoyed it. I learned a lot about the space program during the '60's. I had no idea of the different problems or situations that they had in the space program. It was interesting to learn about the different personality types that become astronauts, and how they interacted. If you are interested in space, or just enjoy non-fiction, I recommend giving this book a try. I listened to the Audible version and enjoyed the narration.
History Geek
This was my second book about the US space program, the first being Gene Cernan's autobiography, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was full of details, both physical and emotional, related to the missions and the astronauts that flew them. I was sort of hoping for a little more from the chapter about Apollo 11, but the rest of the chapters and stories were exceptionally well researched and written.
Mar 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
An engrossing telling of the Gemini And Apollo space programmes, told through the astronauts who lived through them. This is a fascinating read and will set you off looking for more reading material on space exploration. Highly recommended.
Nov 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
Gemini and Apollo missions (up to 11) are covered in great detail in this book. Fine companion to the earlier book in the series and good stories and information throughout. What's keeping it from five stars is the fact that a lot of this material has been covered in other books as well.
Jun 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
this puts all those moon missons I saw live as a kid in prospective. And explains why we should be going back to the moon and contiuing space exploration
Jan 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is a gripping read. The authors take the reader through the Gemini missions and into the early Apollo missions.
Aug 23, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: space, history
A fascinating and well written history of the Gemini and early Apollo missions, putting together the space programme as a continuous planned project leading up to the moon landing. Recommended.
Oct 01, 2012 rated it liked it
was a bit jumpy/all over the place, but not bad
Steven Billingham
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Apr 11, 2016
Scott Kardel
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Richard Southworth
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