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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Patriot, A Word Processor and A Rewrite of History, 6 July 2009
D. G. Hawkes "dayglowhippett" (Essex UK) - See all my reviews
This speculation on the early days of the space race launches with an "America The Beautiful" sentiment and never really recovers it's trajectory instead it burns up in an atmosphere of patriotic smugness. This may have been expected, D'Antonios other publications include a study of the all American institution that is the Hershey Bar. Apparently America led the space race from the outset, contributed massively to the Jet Engine (No mention of the Limey Sir Frank Whittle here then) and had the better hardware at every stage and the better Roketeers throughout. Sputnik was a blip in an otherwise American story of cowboy suited mission controllers (complete with a hobby horse bought by his team) and all American "Miss Space 1958" beauty pagent winners. Von Brauns contribution to the Peenmunde slave labour camps is whitewashed and more importantly D'Antonio's ungenerous treatment of the Soviet Chief Designer Korolev and his amazing R7 rocket, shows a bias that damages the natural tension between two worthy competitors afforded by history. Small US successes are clutched at including a rather embarassing and distasteful episode where drunken GI's stole a model Sputnik from the Brussels Expo 58 Science hall. a)what could the idiots learn from a hollow mock up? and b)alcohol fueled college japes do not national honour make. D'Antonio glorifies such endeavours. By reducing worthy adversaries to little more than second class Russian tractor mechanics the author ruins the story of a genuine challenge to the American people and their worthy response to Soviet competition. Space Race The Space Race: The Battle to Rule the Heavensis better researched, balanced and presented and Two Sides Of The Moon Two Sides of the Moon: Our Story of the Cold War Space Raceshows how American and Soviet perspectives can augment and support each other to create gripping narrative. Korolev was a genius, the R7 was better than Vanguard, Jupiter or Atlas and the cold war is over, lets not resort to re writing history to suit the victor Mr D'Antonio
Dave Hawkes
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A Ball, A Dog, and A Monkey
A Ball, A Dog, and A Monkey by Michael D'antonio (Hardcover - 3 Dec. 2007)
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