This book is the perfect companion to refresh or deepen your astronomical knowledge. The information it contains lets readers know which heavenly highlights to look for and how to continually sharpen their powers of observation. The first part of the book provides technical background; the advantages and disadvantages of various types of telescopes (including tips for purchasing one); explains where, when and how one observes the night sky; and describes the equipment necessary for a clear view. The following sections build on that knowledge with an introduction to observing the firmament, so that finding various objects is not left to chance. The second section introduces the solar system. Readers learn which bodies can be recognized with the eyes alone, and what to keep in mind when making observations. The third section is a directory of visible star clusters, clouds of gas, double stars and galaxies-arranged according to constellations which explains the special phenomena one can observe in the night sky at various times of year. A glossary and index round off the volume and make it easy to find exactly the information you want.