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Shoot for the Moon: The Space Race and the Extraordinary Voyage of Apollo 11

Shoot for the Moon: The Space Race and the Extraordinary Voyage of Apollo 11

by James Donovan


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Learn why NASA astronaut Mike Collins calls this extraordinary space race story "the best book on Apollo": this inspiring and intimate ode to ingenuity celebrates one of the most daring feats in human history.

When the alarm went off forty thousand feet above the moon's surface, both astronauts looked down at the computer to see 1202 flashing on the readout. Neither of them knew what it meant, and time was running out . . .

On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the moon. One of the world's greatest technological achievements — and a triumph of the American spirit — the Apollo 11 mission was a mammoth undertaking involving more than 410,000 men and women dedicated to winning the space race against the Soviets.

Set amid the tensions and upheaval of the sixties and the Cold War, Shoot for the Moon is a gripping account of the dangers, the challenges, and the sheer determination that defined not only Apollo 11, but also the Mercury and Gemini missions that came before it. From the shock of Sputnik and the heart-stopping final minutes of John Glenn's Mercury flight to the deadly whirligig of Gemini 8, the doomed Apollo 1 mission, and that perilous landing on the Sea of Tranquility — when the entire world held its breath while Armstrong and Aldrin battled computer alarms, low fuel, and other problems — James Donovan tells the whole story.

Both sweeping and intimate, Shoot for the Moon is "a powerfully written and irresistible celebration" of one of humankind's most extraordinary accomplishments (Booklist, starred review).

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316341783
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication date: 03/12/2019
Pages: 464
Sales rank: 713,173
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.60(d)

About the Author

James Donovan is the author of the bestselling books The Blood of Heroes: The 13-Day Struggle for the Alamo — and the Sacrifice That Forged a Nation and A Terrible Glory: Custer and the Little Bighorn — the Last Great Battle of the American West. He lives in Dallas, Texas.

Table of Contents

Prologue 3

Part I Up

1 Cossacks in Space 9

2 Of Monkeys and Men 31

3 "The Howling Infinite" 46

4 Man on a Missile 74

Part II Around

5 In Orbit 103

6 Under Pressure 117

7 The Gusmobile 137

8 The Walk, and a Sky Gone Berserk 168

Part III Out

9 Inferno 201

10 Recovery 221

11 Phoenix and Earthrise 243

12 "Amiable Strangers" 262

13 A Practice Run and a Dress Rehearsal 287

Part IV Down

14 "You're Go" 301

15 The Translunar Express 322

16 Descent to Luna 345

17 Moondust 366

Epilogue 390

Acknowledgments 395

Notes 397

Bibliography 429

Index 440

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