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An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth
Book Club 2016 > September 2016 - Astronaut's Guide

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message 1: by Betsy, co-mod (new)

Betsy | 1759 comments Mod
For September 2016 we will be reading An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth. Please use this thread to post questions, comments, and reviews, at any time.

message 2: by Katy (new) - added it

Katy (kathy_h) | 174 comments September is crazy busy for me, but I'd really like to fit this book in for the month.

David Rubenstein | 918 comments Mod
I've been reading this book. It's quite entertaining --- more or less the memoirs of an astronaut. Filled with lots of interesting anecdotes. Although Chris Hadfield played some very important roles in the space program, he comes through as a very humble person. He describes how unglamorous an astronaut's job can be. And, how hard it is on an astronaut's family.

If you enjoyed reading Mary Roach's book, Packing for Mars, then you will doubly enjoy this book.

Chris Hadfield has some very interesting perspectives on how his experiences brought about lessons for all of us living on earth.

aPriL does feral sometimes  (cheshirescratch) | 283 comments I am starting this book today! I've had it on my TBR stack for a long time.

Summer (paradisecity) This one's been pretty interesting so far. Hadfield comes across as a bit arrogant, I think, which makes sense. It makes it a bit difficult for me to reach for this over other books I'm reading right now, but I do enjoy it once I get into it.

message 6: by aPriL does feral sometimes (last edited Sep 17, 2016 12:03PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

aPriL does feral sometimes  (cheshirescratch) | 283 comments He doesn't seem arrogant at all to me. He seems to be sheepish to me, like a man who is embarrassed he won the powerball lottery ticket, so he is emphasizing the hard work and the mental tricks he used to work and sacrifice so much. It is like he is saying underneath his words, like, "excuse me, but I'm sorry I was so lucky, I hate to mention I worked my ass off, but since that is most of my story because all I've done for almost 50 years is study and exercise and take classes and learn more and more stuff, I had to mention it for most of the book, deepest apologies.. sorry, don't mean to show off. It WAS hard work."

Of course given the approach he has decided to take in writing what seems to be his memoirs, a guide to study and maintain hope while working at the goal to be an astronaut for 35 years, he seems SO Canadian to me (I am an American).

No. No way is he arrogant:

having or revealing an exaggerated sense of one's own importance or abilities.
"he's arrogant and opinionated"
synonyms: haughty, conceited, self-important, egotistic, full of oneself, superior

aPriL does feral sometimes  (cheshirescratch) | 283 comments Hadfield's video tuturials on living in the ISS:

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Al Culbertson | 3 comments Started this book yesterday. I love it so far, only at chapter 2 (36 pages in). What I love about this book is the "readability". I just finished Rosalind Franklin, and although the this was a very interesting book, it was the most boring writing style I've ever read. Hadfield is quite the opposite. I'm loving this so far.

David Rubenstein | 918 comments Mod
I finished this book a while ago, but I finally got around to writing a brief review. I highly recommend this entertaining book about the life of an astronaut.

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Bryan Kornele (bkornele) | 19 comments I found this is a good list of points to take away from this book.

As an idea that I got from this book for my son's and daughter's Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops is the idea of event cards for First Aid. Basically some cards that have an accident description on them and have them work as a team to quickly address such an accident. Still flushing out the details. --B

Summer (paradisecity) aPriL does feral sometimes wrote: "No. No way is he arrogant."

Interesting that we have two quite different takes on him! I find him arrogant for two primary reasons: he tries to condense his experience into pithy life lessons that he thinks should apply to everyone and he doesn't seem to acknowledge his privilege. He's certainly worked hard, but he also got extremely lucky. He had the ability and opportunity to study extensively, he had a spouse who supported him and managed the family while he was busy, and he was able to sacrifice everything in pursuit of his goals. Had he been less well off, a single parent, a minority, etc., these opportunities likely wouldn't have been available. And I saw a bit of sheepishness, but that seemed to me more overshadowed but showing off how hard he worked.

I'll likely try to finish this one, since I've invested some time it, but I am having a hard time with the author.

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