This is a very dense 424 pages book.
An excellent book, written in a narrative mode, of the MIR space station program. It is not a technical description of the spacecraft, but rather a story of all Russian space stations. Detailed and thorough, it can be read as a thriller, a tribute to the Russian way of handling problems. There are 3 main sections, Salyut, MIR and an extremely interesting 82 pages glossary, which spare numerous explanations to be laid as microscopic bottom page legends. The back cover is an accurate account of the book, and they are many good, but small, quality black and white rare pictures. Few diagrams and schematics though...
The title, MIR, is a bit inaccurate, as the first 139 pages are devoted to the Salyut program. The other 178 pages is the detailed account of the saga of the MIR space station. This book organization makes sense, because the evolution of the Salyut program explains many of the basic design options of MIR.
The book contains lots of interesting details about life in space, scientific experiments, human relationships, space walks, management problems and the incredible resilience of Russian cosmonauts. We can know all the things we wish to know at the time, thanks to soviet era secrecy policy.
After reading the book, the contribution to the design of the ISS from the experience gained in MIR becomes obvious, so many lessons taken from all the incidents that happened.