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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 16 September 2003
This is a classic Dorling Kindersley handbook:solid,glossy and very durable. You can thumb this to your hearts content and it will still keep its shape. A double-page spread is given to each planet with lots of facts and figures presented in a clear and colourful format. All 88 constellations are described in detail with the major items of interest to be found in each one. Sky-guides are provided for every month of the year as well.
There are some useful photographs of the constellations and the various astronomical objects they contain but I found some of these difficult to make out. Perhaps things are clearer in the field.
A well designed book that really does pack a lot in and the array of facts alone will please the astral trainspotters no end. The celestial hemispheres on the inside of the front and back covers are a nice finishing touch to an aesthetically pleasing as well as informative guide.
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I am one of those people who has trouble finding specific constellations, and is never quite sure whether I'm looking at Jupiter or Venus. I carry around little scraps of paper from the newspaper so I can figure out which planets are visible . . . but have a hard time reading the scraps in the dark.
With this book, I can see when and where each planet will appear through 2012. I can also get all the help I need to know what constellations are up there now, and which ones will be present when.
As a result, I can finally introduce the starry heavens in an appropriate way to younger people. I already know a lot about astronomy, but the night sky was beyond me. No longer! Whew!
Although my four children did not get much help with the heavens from me, the grandchildren will receive great benefits from this resource.
Even if you are good at identifying objects in the night sky, this book will be a valuable, convenient reference for you.
Enjoy the lore that our ancestors appreciated by seeing new aspects of the night-time sky!
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on 10 December 2010
This is a beautiful book. great for someone getting started with Astronomy. Concepts simply explained. I got it as a present for my niece...then bought another copy because I wanted to re-read it myself. Good solid construction and full of great colour images.
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This book is typical of the high quality to be expected from DK Books . Clear and plentiful pictures and lucid text . Very comprehensive with excellent coverage of the local planets and the more distant galaxies .
I fully recommend this book to anyone .
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on 9 March 2012
I have always had a passing interest in the stars and night sky but only recently taken the plunge and purchased a telescope. I then set about researching good books to learn more about the night sky and find my way around. I borrowed many different books from the library before deciding that this is the best for my needs. It is nice and compact in a fairly sturdy cover so can be carried with you. It crams in an incredible amount of information in an easily digestible format. The book is nicely separated into bite size chapters covering different aspects of the night sky. It starts with an introduction to the night sky, the Universe, Stars etc. Next there is a chapter about the Solar System and the planets. The most useful for me was the section on constellations. Every constellation is given a page or two; It gives a brief description of the constellation; where and when it can be seen and the specific features of interest within it. It also includes a photograph of the constellation as well as any special features in the night sky, together with line drawings to help with identification. You are also given a brief description of what each constellation represents with the mythology around how it was named. At the end of the book is an easy to use monthly sky guide starting with a brief introduction to each month followed by a sky map with easy to use charts and descriptions of what to look for. This section includes useful symbols indicating whether the feature can be seen with the naked eye, binoculars or telescope. I have also had a look at the book 'Turn left at Orion' which seems to receive very good reviews and while it is also a very good book it was too large to carry around and for me the information given in this book is easier to understand and more suited to beginners. In my humble opinion if you are going to purchase just one book then this is it. Buy a subscription to a magazine such as 'Astronomy Now' or 'Sky at Night'as well and you are well on your way.
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on 10 March 2011
I bought this book after having read it once! It has everything you want to know as a beginner about stars and planets. It's a must have if you plan to locate stars, constellations, nebula etc. on your own.
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on 4 August 2014
This book contains a wealth of information about the solar system and the wider universe in a compact guide.

It has a review of each of the constellations, including a small but detailed map of each one, setting out clearly the main sights in each for those with binoculars or a small telescope.

As with most Dorling Kindersley books, it is attractively laid out, with good use of images and colours.

I have a much more detailed book covering the constellations, but I bought this one for its concise and easily accessible information.
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on 8 December 2011
thank you so fast and my little girl loves it!
Thank you so much.

everything you said and more!
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on 3 April 2014
This is a very useful, practical guide to the night sky. Good information and maps. Another useful feature is that, unlike some guides, is useful in any part of the World.
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on 17 January 2013
Really loved this little gem, easy to explain to my Grandson and the pictures helped him understand that there isn't just stars in space. Worth buying!
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