Carrying the Fire: An Astronaut's Journeys

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Overview

NASA astronaut Michael Collins trained as an experimental test pilot before venturing into space as a vital member of the Gemini 10 and Apollo 11 missions. In Carrying the Fire, his account of his voyages into space and the years of training that led up to them, Collins reveals the human tensions, the physical realities, and the personal emotions surrounding the early years of the space race. Collins provides readers with an insider's view of the space program and conveys the excitement and wonder of his journey to the moon. As skilled at writing as he is at piloting a spacecraft, Collins explains the clash of personalities at NASA and technical aspects of flight with clear, engaging prose, withholding nothing in his candid assessments of fellow astronauts Neil Armstrong, John Glenn, and Buzz Aldrin, and officials within NASA. A fascinating memoir of mankind's greatest journey told in familiar, human terms, Carrying the Fire is by turns thrilling, humorous, and thought-provoking, a unique work by a remarkable man.
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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times
Collins can write…. He is breezy, glib, collegiate, and frequently funny. There are marvelous things in Carrying the Fire that catch a reader unaware every few pages.
Atlantic
Collins's account of the five years that went into the testing of the men for Apollo, the designing of the spaceship and the equipment, the apprehension of what might go wrong is a magnificent piece of exposition, alive with humor, candid in its anxiety, very sensitive in the appreciation of the men involved. This is a splendid and affirmative book.
From the Publisher
“Collins tells what his space journeys meant to him as a human being [and] discusses the role of man amid the multitudinous mechanical marvels . . . Profoundly affecting.” —The New Yorker

“Michael Collins can write . . . No other person who has flown in space has captured the experience so vividly.” —Henry S.F. Cooper, Jr., The New York Times Book Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780815410287
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/28/2001
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 544
  • Sales rank: 254,672
  • Product dimensions: 6.06 (w) x 8.92 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Collins, a NASA astronaut, was the third American to walk in space (Gemini 10) and the pilot of the command module during Apollo 11's mission to the moon in July, 1969. Following his career as an astronaut, he served as the director of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC. He has since retired and lives in Marco Island, Florida.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2004

    This book saved my life!

    I first read Carrying the Fire while still a high-school student. I loved the book's sense of adventure and the way I almost felt as if I were along for the ride! How did it 'save my life?' My friends were into drugs, but they always respected my reason for saying 'no.' After 'virtually' going to the moon, I always said that I wanted to be an Astronaut!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2002

    The Bill Bryson of astronauts

    If you enjoy Bill Bryson's books, you'll love this one too - even if you have little interest in space travel. Collins is funny and irreverent, while still managing to provide a wealth of information about what it took to put men on the Moon. There's good reason why this book is still in print almost 30 years after its initial publication. It's a fun read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2000

    A Real Space Odyssey

    Mike Collins has written the most arresting account of spaceflight ever published. His experiences as an Air Force Pilot and NASA Astronaut rank as adventure as great as the conquest of Mt. Everest. The descriptions he gives of the sights, sounds and feelings of spaceflight give one the feeling of actually being there themselves. Also worthy of note, the emotions of the man during the triumphs and tragedies of the Moon Race and the fears of the 'what if' scenarios coming true are told with honest seriousness and humor that make this book the best ever written by an Astronaut. Space Enthusiasts and Adventure Lovers alike need to have this book in their home libraries. Carrying the Fire is a great book.

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