This entry in the six-volume "History of Space Exploration" details how the marvels of engineering enabled scientists to take close-up looks at the solar surface, the rings around Uranus, and other marvels of the solar system. In addition the book illustrates how technology provides information on other phenomena such as black holes, star clusters, and stellar nurseries. Text is organized by what space probes look at: the sun and planets, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn and other planets, plus comets and asteroids, and deep probes. Extensively captioned color and black-and-white photos, occasional diagrams (how the Hubble Space Telescope works), and quotes break up the page without overwhelming the several paragraphs per heading that convey the chronology. This entry is all technology and technique with few people, as befits the topic. In addition to a timeline, a glossary, bibliography, places to visit, space camps, and websites plus an index are included. 2005, World Almanac, Ages 11 to 16.
Susan Hepler, Ph.D.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 5-7-Kerrod expands on such single-volume treatments as Carole Stott's Space Exploration (Knopf, 1997) or Carmen Bredeson's Our Space Program (Millbrook, 1999) with fact-laden but not indigestible examinations of significant space technology and events. Dawn takes the tale from 17th-century fantasist Cyrano de Bergerac to John Glenn's first flight and the early Mars probes. In Space Probes, the author goes planet by planet, then beyond the solar system, closing with a note about the Hubble Space Telescope's possible successor. Space Shuttles begins with the late-1950s Dyna-Soar project, ends with cogent arguments for moving away from the whole idea of shuttles, and in between offers an unusually detailed look at the Soviet shuttle program, as well as the U.S.'s. Space Stations provides an overview of the predecessors and progress of the aptly named International Space Station. Each volume is profusely illustrated with sharply reproduced space photos and artists' conceptions. Kerrod is a space-exploration booster, but not an uncritical one; he mentions the ugly fate of Laika, the first animal in space, for instance, and tallies failed missions along with successes. Because each title stands alone, there is some necessary overlap, but the entire series still makes an important addition for any collection supporting avid young scientists or strong science curricula.-John Peters, New York Public Library Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.