Customer Reviews


8 Reviews
5 star:
 (5)
4 star:
 (3)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 
Most Helpful First | Newest First

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A unique life, 10 Mar 2003
By 
Rob Glover (Yorkshire, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
Anyone reading this book is likely not only to be keen on Astronomy but also a fan of Patrick to start with. I'm no exception, I got the astronomy bug at about 8 years old and remember getting my Dad to record the Sky At Night for me during the heyday of Viking (manually, on a cassette recorder - this was before VCRs!) because it was on long after my bedtime. Over the years I've enjoyed many of Patrick's books, from the Observer's Guide to Astronomy - remember them? - to The Unfolding Universe (Sky at Night 25th) in 1982.
I got this autobiography as a present from my wife and read it in the space of 1 weekend. This is easy to do, as Patrick is a witty racounteur and fills the book with anecdotes, often making me laugh out loud (look forward to his description of the 1991 IAU conference in Argentina!) He attempts to steer a path of describing all parts of his life, without just describing developments in Astronomy, which I found quite welcome. So as well as the well-known Sky at Night tales (e.g. the bluebottle), which one might expect and which most people have heard, we get his cricketing career, his xylophone playing, his early career as a schoolmaster, and his later game-playing with stuffy civil servants. Obviously the astronomy career remains the main thread of the book, but all is told with a definite lack of pomposity, in fact the general air is self-depreciating. He is also fond of certain phrases: "And thereby hangs a tale".
It's a pity Patrick chooses to gloss over his earliest years, as these were clearly formative of the rest of his life. There is scant mention of his early ill-health which meant he did not enjoy a conventional school career, and thus was able to indulge his interests; and of his time in the RAF during the war which taught him to fly a turboprop and also, it seems, to look after himself in a fight. There are also only brief mentions of Lorna, the girl who died in the War and who still clearly leaves a sadness within him which prevented him from marrying anyone else. One gets the impression that this will always be too painful for him to say much about. At the other end of his life, his deep affection for his mother comes through as well, she seemed a remarkable woman, and if Patrick lives as long as she did, he'll be around for a little while yet.
Patrick comes into his own when describing his early moon-mapping days, leading through to the start of the space programme and a long involvement with NASA as a BBC reporter. He is always at pains to emphasise his amateur status among the professionals (he never took a degree), although it's clear later on, such as with the fight to stop the closure of the Royal Greenwich Observatory, that he has considerable influence with official bodies and is not afraid to try and swing things.
In other areas Patrick is his usual forthright, and occasionally political, self. He devotes small chapters to his opposition to bloodsports like fox-hunting, and to a attack on political correctness, and European integration. You will either agree or disagree with him depending on your age and outlook. I am in my thirties, and so while agreeing with every word of his bloodsports chapter, I find use of casually racist terms far more offensive than use of anglo-saxon swear words. However, Patrick is of my Dad's generation, and the situation there is reversed. You won't see any swearing in this book, but there are are areas where I have to remind myself that this is an 80-year old white English man, with the attitudes prevalent of his generation. For this reason alone I have to dock a star from this review.
Having said all that, it's the warmth and humour in Patrick that shines through this book. He never comes over as self-important, he's still obviously fascinated by astronomy and was lucky to make a career in the subject he loves. He's a one-off character and has had a unique life. Buy it and enjoy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 80 Not Out - By Sir Patrick Moore, 20 Mar 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
This book gives a fascinating insight into the worlds most famous amateur astronomer.
The book starts by charting Patrick's early years, then into his war time years and from then on his career within the BBC and The Sky at Night.
There are loads of funny and sad stories has Patrick re-tells in his own down to earth way which makes the book addictive reading and not easy to put down once youv'e started to read it.
As you progress through the chapters a sense of sadness hits you as you Patrick has realised he is on "his final lap" and realises that his days of world travel are nearly over.
I urge anyone to buy this book who has even a passing interest in astronomy or Patrick Moore
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 5 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
Must read
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars A legend in astronomy, 25 Jun 2014
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
I met Patrick twice in 1999 and 2000 and was lucky enough to receive some correspondence from him which I still have . All of it written on Patricks ancient typewriter.
The book deals with Patricks early life his discovery of astronomy ,the war and the loss of his girl Lorna in I believe an air-raid and of course the beginnings of the Sky at Night . His one-of-kind personality comes through very well and when the end came in 2012 I was upset by the end of this modest but polite gentleman.
Or is it? I refer not the candle which Patrick said he would try to blow out but the legacy he leaves us. Its through this that he lives on. Through all the books and Sky at Nights he made. Long after all the so-called new age guru types and footballer are long forgotten some one will be getting their first instruction in astronomy via Patrick. And while I admit I may have read too many Halo novels which tell of AI computers with holographic avitars I like to think that if they do get built somebody will down load all the Sky at Nights and books Patrick wrote to create a 'Cyber Patrick'. Which I hope will take over the Sky at Night programme from the small army who are currently presenting it today. With out need for sleep or tea breaks this new Patrick could present the programme 24/7 which I would welcome very much indeed!
If his CPU is based at Farthings I shall make my way there and wish him the best of luck.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!, 10 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
This was bought for a gift, however I know it has been well received and now read from cover to cover.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars A GOOD READ, 16 Feb 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
If you like someone who is refreshingly honest about his outlook on life then Patrick Moore's autobiography is the book for you. Even if you don't have a great interst in astronomy, what he has written here may suprise and interest you. I enjoyed the book immensely. It's good for taking with you to doctors' or dentists' appointments.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars patrick moore, 5 Feb 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
My father loved this book.It made a great Christmas present for him.HE loves his books and reads a lot.Thanks again
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read, 1 Feb 2013
By 
Mr. S. Howley - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography (Hardcover)
An easy read whipped through it, very enjoyable. Mainly facts about his life, very little about the emotions of the man, he kept them out the book. For me it diminished the read but still an enjoyable book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography
Patrick Moore: 80 Not Out - The Autobiography by CBE,DSc,FRAS,Sir Patrick Moore (Hardcover - 6 Mar 2003)
Used & New from: £0.01
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews