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Men from Earth Hardcover – 1 May 1989

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On the 20th July 1969 Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon. Here he relives the dramatic human story of Project Apollo.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 11 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Out of this World 16 Dec. 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Truly a book I could hardly put down once I began to read. Not only is this book a facinating history lesson it is exciting to read and more interesting than fiction because it really happened. The book documents the whole space race including how one man "Buzz" was determined to become an astronaut and what obstacles he had to overcome to become one. His life was almost unimaginable and must rank near the top in one of the most facinating autobiographies ever written (in my opinion of course). All (or what is available) details on the Russian space program are placed chronologically through the book to show where the Russian space program was the same time as the Americans. I wish they had kept this book in print because I would like to get it for a gift for one friend who is an ex desert storm soldier and another who was involved in the space program and got to see the famous german scientists who helped the US win the race to the moon. Truly an excellent book!
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
The best book on the Apollo program I have read 1 Dec. 2004
By Charles Ashbacher - Published on
Format: Hardcover
When there is a discussion regarding the creation of a vast new technology, proponents generally use the phrase, "Manhattan project for _________." This is of course a reference to the vast project that led to the development of the atomic bomb. It surprises me that this is used rather than a reference to the Apollo project that put people on the moon. To date, no one has found a use for nuclear weapons other than destruction, but the technical and psychological benefits of the American space program were tremendous. Both projects were enormous in scope and success required the invention of whole new technologies.

Buzz Aldrin was one of three astronauts in the Apollo 11 mission and the second man to walk on the moon. He was a fighter pilot, but like the rest of the early astronaut corps, combined that with a great deal of intelligence. Buzz earned a Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in manned space rendezvous. Therefore, he understands a great deal of the theory behind the movement of space vehicles, which was very helpful in the early days of trying to rendezvous with another space vehicle.

This book is his recollection of the American space program; from the time the first German V2 delivered a deadly warhead to the ignominious aftermath of the Apollo program. His fundamental understanding of many of the principles of space flight is evident, making this different from most of the other histories of the American space program. He also creates two parallel time tracks, one describing the American successes and the other the actions of the Soviets.

Those who understand the history of the times realize that the greatest single impetus for the American space program occurred in the Soviet Union. Their launching of the Sputnik satellite and then the more incredible event of orbiting Yuri Gagarin created a great deal of anxiety in the United States and led to the "space race." While it was a source of great national pride and tremendous technical advancement, the space programs of the two superpowers was just another area of competition. Aldrin explains, as best he could in 1989, how the Soviet Union was able to accomplish what it did. Since most Soviet records were still unavailable at that time, there are many occasions when he resorts to informed speculation.

Aldrin was selected for the astronaut corps in 1963, while the Mercury project was still active. He describes the talent of the astronauts, as well as their fiercely competitive camaraderie. These people were fighter pilots and combat veterans. While they competed with the enemy for their lives and with their fellow pilots for advancement and glory, they also shared the common bonds of people who choose the life of danger. This is the best book about the Apollo program that I have read. Aldrin's combination of astronaut insider and knowledge of the technical details is what made it that way.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Another fine book by Buzz Aldrin/Apollo 11 28 May 2000
By anthony j pache jr tony - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book is almost as good as Buzz's first book--Return To Earth from early 70's. Dr. Aldrin at least takes his time and makes the effort to share the Apollo 11 experience with us and also what was happening [space related] in America and in RUSSIA during Cold War/ Space race era, and compares the two " superpowers'" and what was happening at both places at same time intervals in the 60's. Much research and time spent in book
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Buzz Lightyear Walks on the Moon! 16 Aug. 1999
By Gordon Reade - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Although no where near as good as Carrying the Fire by Mike Collins this is a good solid book and a must for those who collect books written by astronauts.
It has been out of print for many years and so I'm afraid you might have a hard time finding a copy but it is most definitely worth the effort.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Lost in space 8 Jan. 2000
By Robbie Lewis - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The author of this book went to the the moon but unfortunately the book still lurches in Earth orbit. Yes, the book is hard to get and my grateful thanks to Amazon for getting me a copy. Despite the splendor of the subject matter the book was a tough read. Too dry, too technical, too lost in words. Where was the personal touch? Where was Aldrin's inspiring rehabilitation from alcholism, the personal difficulties, the controversy over who would walk first on the moon. The latter makes it in print, but only just, and one can't quite help but feel with much selective editing. For real space buffs only.
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