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The book includes chapters dedicated to each astronaut, the Space Race itself, and background and chronological progress of the mission including critical maneuvers and mission setbacks.
The book reached 7 on the New York Times bestseller list and has received positive reviews from critics. The film rights to Rocket Men were secured by Makeready prior to the book's publication.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Story of the first manned mission to the Moon, based on first-hand interviews. Fans of explorers and adventurers will enjoy this vibrant, accessible history.
This is the story of their mission, told in cinematic detail. The story of the dangerous mission that laid the ground for the Moon landing has not been told in such detail until now.
Rocket Men is as good as it gets. This is a great story But he nailed it. But the recession, the aging and expensive-to-keep-competitive XR, and the appearance of the all-conquering Indian FTR in killed off nearly all of the H-D racer-dealers.
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They did well, scoring seven podiums, with Gauthier grabbing wins at Sacramento and Springfield — and in the off-season a factory Harley ride for alongside Jarod Vanderkooi and ex-Grand National Champion Bryan Smith.
With Rymer leaving Black Hills for a consultancy gig, the door was wide open for a new dealer to step in…and through it hopped George Latus, longtime Harley dealer from Portland, Oregon and a fan and supporter of racing and race teams for decades — including professional flat track.
A deal was made for a couple bikes and, naturally, talk turned to which rider to hire. So he was high on our list. You have to have that type of experience, and we have that on our team with Joe [Kopp].
We gel. What he tells me about my riding or setup, I can trust, and I often agree with him. Truck drivers, fun havers, wheel changers, motor pullers, water getters, emotional supporters…they are totally the glue for our team.
Our chemistry is really good! George Latus has a history of developing good plans and teams, in racing, yes, but also in business.
But he finagled a scooter somehow, and then a go-kart and, later, a hot rod car. But no motorcycles until after an Army gig. When I got home I rode dirtbikes, still had the motorcycle bug, and during college at the University of Montana I got a job at local dealer Cycle Center after hounding them relentlessly to hire me.
Due to their age, this book may be the last time their full story can be told this way and so well. Each of the three astronauts, who later achieved success in the corporate world, goes to great lengths to show the love and connection they had and still have with their families and especially their spouses.
As a the fifty year anniversary of this mission is approaching, reliving the important events of Apollo 8 for a new generation is very important.
As a narrative history, Rocket Men is quite enjoyable and a page turner. It is highly recommended. Feb 24, Christopher rated it really liked it Shelves: non-fiction , space-apollo-program , space , own-yes , read-no , space-moon.
Short version: Wow, what a surprise. To space fans, Apollo 8 is probably the least celebrated of the great spaceflights of the cold war. There wasn't a book devoted to covering the flight until Short version: Wow, what a surprise.
There wasn't a book devoted to covering the flight until Zimmerman published his trailblazing book in , thirty years after the fact.
Amazingly, it was nearly another twenty years before Kluger's book arrived in Kluger is an outstanding writer, and I think his efforts on Lost Moon made it one of the best books about the Apollo program.
With Apollo 8 , it seemed to me that Kluger had written the definitive book about Apollo 8. Kluger wrote elegantly and authoritatively, and he tells the story almost through the eyes of the astronauts themselves.
What more needed to be said about this event? But as we sometimes learn, a new perspective can be refreshing, even when we think the last word may have been spoken about a particular subject.
In , a new book about Apollo 8 was unexpected, especially from a writer whose skills did not appear to be in aerospace. I found Rocket Men by a happy accident during a search on Amazon, and I automatically knew I needed to have it.
Robert Kurson was a bestselling author, but I didn't know anything about him or the book he wrote, Shadow Divers.
It was with that skepticism that began reading Rocket Men. It initially did nothing to allay my fears. First, I groused about the title, which I felt was too broad and undescriptive.
Rocket Men also happens to be the title of an earlier and lesser book about the Apollo program, so the chance of confusion was possible. What author wants to title their book after an earlier, undistinguished book about the same subject?
Kurson was losing me right from the gate. What quiet engineer contemplates saving the world? This did not seem like the behavior of George Low, one of the architects of the Apollo program.
What a melodramatic way to begin a book, I kept thinking. As Kluger accurately described in his book, the crew that would eventually become Apollo 8—Frank Borman, James Lovell, and William Anders—were originally slated for a high earth orbit mission on Apollo 9.
This is an important change, and all it needs is a short explanation of before and after. The reader might naturally believe it's a typo on page 9.
Elsewhere, there are a few minor errors of fact. In one instance, Kurson describes the launch of Sputnik 1 in as having taken place at the Baikonur Cosmodrome—although the launch complex was not known by that name until many years later.
In the s it was known merely as a missile test range near Tyuratam. And how about that those skillsets arguably vaulted the US space program ahead of the Soviets by that point?
To understand how Apollo came to be, I think it must be said why Gemini was important in laying the groundwork. And then came my outrage of the book.
Kraft is certainly referring to a specific point in the Apollo 8 planning, when a December mission date was contemplated but not yet committed.
By the time Kurson tells this story, Slayton had already swapped Apollo 8 and 9, and Apollo 8 was designated a lunar mission with a known December window.
So why would there be any question about lunar positions and trajectories? Because there wouldn't be. Kurson inserted this story too late, and it should have taken place when the change was being discussed in August.
I'll freely admit that I'm nitpicking heavily on some of this. But that's what I do with any space book.
As I begin reading space history books by unfamiliar authors, my bullshit radar is always locked on. Likewise, I'm also looking for positives that set books and authors apart from others.
No difference here. All of these goals were extremely hazardous, and potentially catastrophic. Apollo 8 would be by far the riskiest and most complex mission of the US space program to that point.
That realization was not lost on James Webb. To his credit, he deferred to his colleagues and allowed the plan to proceed.
Webb was wary of the great risks involved in the mission, and he may have felt betrayed that he was kept out of the loop on decisions such as the configuration of Apollo 8 as a lunar mission.
In several stretches, Kurson shares that there was some pessimism about scheduling Apollo 8 during the Christmas season.
That was potentially a very heavy burden to carry into retirement. It probably would have crushed him.
In another interesting section, Kurson highlights that it was Frank Borman who was the key figure who trimmed the number of lunar orbits down to just ten i.
He figured the longer they stayed away from earth, the more the chance for failure. Borman also fought other, lesser battles as well, including his refusal to allow a TV camera on the flight a battle which he lost.
Like all single-mission histories, Rocket Men features the requisite chapter-long bios of the crewmembers.
Kurson did his homework here, as well. All of the bios include some information either not widely shared or never before. I also came away with an even fuller understanding of—and maybe even an appreciation for—Borman's tightly wound, no-nonsense personality.
Another deeply reported section—also not mentioned in the other Apollo 8 books—describes the evening before launch day.
After the crew spent time with Charles and Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Anders had several guests of his own, including his childhood priest.
As the visit continued, Borman—tense in the hours ahead of launch—snapped at Anders for the perceived distraction, and then apologized for his outburst.
Kurson takes his time, imparting a number of interesting details. Not long after, he even notes that the red alloy rings were for output and the blue rings were for input—not the usual stuff most Apollo books repeat ad infinitum.
One of my pet peeves about space books is authors' tendencies to summarize the pre-launch, launch, and post launch phases into disappointingly few pages.
If I remember correctly, Zimmerman's book summarized the Apollo 8 launch in a flimsy three pages. Launch is one of the greatest fascinations of rocket flight, but sadly, not many writers get it right.
Here, it was surprising and satisfying to finally read an author expounding upon this central subject. Kurson manages to weave many different elements into a fast-moving narrative, and gets into a good amount of detail.
He emphasizes the rough ascent of the Saturn V rocket and notes several times how terrifically loud it was in the command module. Still, Borman kept his hand steady at the abort handle, and when the third stage engaged, Borman reported the problem had safely passed.
To be completed. Sep 12, Carly Friedman rated it it was amazing Shelves: nfbc-brs-and-botms , audiobooks , because-science.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Kurson did an amazing job describing multiple aspects of the Apollo 8 mission. We also learn about how they were selected, the training and other preparation for the mission, and their wives and families.
I loved the chapters that summarized the political and social environment during that time period. The description of the mission had me on the edge of my seat I thoroughly enjoyed this book!
The description of the mission had me on the edge of my seat from takeoff to their return on earth. Kurson interviewed the astronauts and thus the level of detail is amazing.
Highly recommended! I genuinely look forward to reading more by this author. Dec 01, Ben rated it liked it Shelves: space. The story of Apollo 8, the first manned trip to and around the Moon.
For example, Bill Anders took his famous Earthrise photo in orbit around the Moon. There's very little new information here, but it is a good story.
Kurson's angle seems to have been to interview each of the astronauts and their families, so we hear about their thoughts, and family and marital problems.
That's fine. There are extended biographical sketches of each astronaut. The book gives a good sense of the atmosphere for the The story of Apollo 8, the first manned trip to and around the Moon.
The book gives a good sense of the atmosphere for the astronauts and their families. Kurson also includes short summaries of current events.
Even though this is obviously just filler, to bulk the book up, I appreciated the context. The astronaut hero worship is still tiresome.
For example, Kurson says that no one else would have been willing to make the trip because it was so dangerous! The Revenants. Frostfire The Suffering.
Mother Russia Tales from the Vault. Hidden categories: Use dmy dates from October Articles with topics of unclear notability from January All articles with topics of unclear notability Doctor Who articles lacking infobox image All stub articles.Retrieved 22 November Libraries RULE! I read this along with my husband and we discussed and marvelled over the details every day and to be honest I am going to miss the suspense and drama and company of Bet Victor wonderful book. She packed my bags last night pre-flight Zero My Zoo nine a. Nelson achieves this effect by layering together a sweeping series of well edited personal cameos, each on to itself a fascinating victory or tragedy.