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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 29 June 2009
This is a dream book: the book that you thought you could find but never did... My only negative point are the typos here and there which suggests they went too fast.... There is a particular big mistake too...
anyway, nice book.
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on 17 March 2011
The only book that you'll find cocktail recipes along with statistics. Everything you ever wanted to know about the moon is here: moon-related books, films and music, the moon and wildlife, the future and the ancient past, mythology, medicine and everything in between. Comprehensive doesn't do it justice, and it certainly inspires wonder.

One thing to remember is that this is a book for the general public: if you're a hardened astrophysicist don't expect a journal article. Instead you have an immensely readable, very neatly laid-out and heavy illustrated framework of both the broad facts and those little details you never even thought to consider. And it definitely caters to every interest: if you like psychology there're parts on insanity and lycanthropy; if you're a biologist it has parts describing animals named after the moon and the moon's effects on animal migration and breeding; if you're a history buff it has huge parts on mythology, history of observation and even the history of telescopes and mapping, and if you're more into writing it has pages of poems nearer the end. Not to forget, of course, the actual space enthusiast: for you there's things like the different types of craters, how the moon was formed, librations, regolith, lunar volcanic activity and the Maria, along with detailed summaries of the Apollo missions.

If you've ever been curious about the moon and want something that's easy to stomach without losing any of it's charm, then you owe it to yourself to get this book.
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on 21 January 2013
If you arte interested in the moon, this is an excellent read, all about the history, landscape, and man's trip to the moon.
Would fully recommend this book.
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on 28 May 2011
Very informative book bought for a friend initially, but who knows if it will actually get wrapped & given! I'm hooked!
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on 26 March 2011
This book which is, of course, basically a moon miscellany, is a rather beautifully put together collection of stories and facts about our nearest celestial neighbour, although the matt finish of the cover does mean that it can start to look a bit tatty if you're not careful when handling it. It contains lots of information about all things lunar from the expeditions exploring it to the myths, legends and beliefs about it. Listed below are some of the things I most enjoyed finding out about, and I thought that this would be most appropriate form to put them in.

1. The lunar `seas', or Maria, are evidence of long ago volcanic activity and are mostly made up of lava. They are where the largest disturbances due to mass concentrations (or `mascons') of high gravity occur on the moon's surface. It is still unknown what causes the mascons, although they did affect some of the readings on the equipment aboard the Apollo missions, but it is suspected that it might be due to asteroid fragments buried deep beneath the lava or just by the lava itself, although not all the areas of volcanic activity contain them.

2. Biodynamic farming does sound a lot like witchcraft, with its references to sowing seeds at moonrise according to the appropriate zodiac sign of the plant you wish to grow (apples are seeds and thus fire signs, for example, and therefore should be planted when the moon is in Aries, Leo or Sagittarius in the Sidreal "of the stars" 27.3 day cycle) and harvesting at moonset, and burying powdered quartz in a cowhorn for the summer to attract and magnify cosmic energy, but a lot of real scientists believe that there might be something in it.

3. `Mawu' was the name of the most powerful goddess of the Fon people of Western Nigeria and Dahomey in Africa. She is associated with joy and fertility and, ironically brings the night and the cool air, both of which are associated with wisdom and age. Her twin brother is apparently Liza, the Sun God and an eclipse is what happens when he's making love with his sister.

4. The Metonic cycle measures the time it takes for the moon to reappear in exactly the same spot in the sky. This takes apparently 6940 days, or about 19 years and is named after Meton, a Greek philosopher although the Babylonians had also known this centuries earlier. The nearest point that the moon gets to the earth (the perigee), is 221,468 miles, and the furthest away it gets (the apogee) is 252,716 miles.

5. Despite worshipping both Sun Gods and Moon Gods, the Ancient Egyptians were not actually great astronomers. It interests me that, because, despite this, the relationship of the pyramids to position of the sun and the stars has fascinated certain people for many, many years.

6. The Soviet mission Luna 1 was the first man-made object to ever achieve escape velocity from the planet earth, but it missed the moon by 40,000 miles and went into solar orbit, technically becoming the first artificial planet, as well as having been the first artificial comet when it released a cloud of sodium gas nearly three quarters of a million miles into its flight. It still orbits the sun every 443 days and has been renamed Mechta, which is a Russian word meaning `dreamer'.

7. Luna 15 was launched three days before Apollo 11 and the mission happened simultaneously with the much more famous first landing of men on the moon. Eleven hours after Neil Armstrong made that historic "giant leap for mankind", Luna 15 crashed into the Sea of Crises, thankfully nowhere near the first Apollo landing site.

8. The Soviet space programme successfully retrieved moon-rock and returned it to the earth using a remote controlled lander during the mission designated Luna 16. Interestingly, a later mission, Luna 20, which drilled into an area in the lunar highlands, retrieved a one ounce sample which contained rock that was over three billion years old.

9. The Russians developed the first (remote controlled) lunar rover, Lunokhod 1, which landed on the moon within Luna 17 on November 17th 1970 and operated relatively successfully for eleven months. The equipment was housed inside the body of the machine and the chamber containing it was heated by the radioactive decay of polonium-210. Luna 21's Lunokhod 2 rover also functioned well, thanks in no small part to some high-resolution pictures supplied unofficially by NASA which helped to solve some early navigational problems

10. The word `Zodiac' is actually Greek and literally means `circus of animals' which I suppose makes sense if you think about it, but I'd never really thought about it before.
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on 1 September 2015
A good starter if you want to know a bit about the moon - from the science to the myths and everything in-between.
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on 31 January 2015
Bought for someone else,looked interesting
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on 17 June 2016
a lovely read if you are a moon fan
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on 6 June 2016
My wife adored the book.
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