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Lost Moon by Jim Lovell
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Lost Moon (1994)

by Jim Lovell, Jeffrey Kluger

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1,282None6,118 (4.24)18
  1. 00
    Ice by Shane Johnson (dukeallen)
  2. 00
    A Man on the Moon: The Voyages of the Apollo Astronauts by Andrew Chaikin (paulkid)
    paulkid: I found Jim Lovell's account of Apollo 13 more gripping and technically explicative than any of Chaikin's stories. Of course, "Lost Moon" did not address the geological exploration of the moon; Chaikin's book is a good choice if you're interested in that.
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Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
This is an excellent, reader-friendly book for those wishing to take a dip into the world of the American space program at its height. The science and the experiences of those working with that science are given pride of place in the narrative but does not get in the way of the pacing and is described in ways comprehensible to a novice.

My only complaint would be that the book is the story of Apollo 13 as seen through the eyes of the Lovell family. This is a natural by-product of Jim Lovell being a co-author and Jeffrey Kluger makes sure we hear all about how mission control in Houston experienced the flight as well, but a bit more research on how the world experienced it would've been appreciated. It was a personal event for the Lovells and a professional one for NASA, but it was also a world event. Other than a prayer on the stock exchange and offers from other nations to help retrieve the landing capsule if the astronauts had to come done in waters closer to their shores, little of the outside world's response is mentioned.

Tl;dr: If you're looking to get a gift for a space nut (or an avid reader you hope will become a space nut) and they don't have it already, this book would make an excellent selection. ( )
  willoughby | Dec 12, 2013 |
I sought this out after watching Apollo 13, a film I just loved which was based on this book. Jim Lovell, credited as co-author was the commander of Apollo 13, a mission to the moon that went terribly wrong and threatened the lives of the three astronauts on board. The tale about how NASA worked to get those astronauts safely home is every bit as inspiring as the story of how they successfully got them to the moon. I admit I'm a space junkie so I'm sure that contributed greatly to the appeal of this book, but I was riveted from beginning to end. ( )
  LisaMaria_C | Sep 5, 2013 |
It's amazing how everyone involved put personal agendas aside and made it work. A lesson for corporate America. ( )
  Mortybanks | May 28, 2013 |
First thing's first. I enjoyed this, and as a novel I would have rated it about a 3.5, but as a nonfiction account I would call it a solid 5. When I say that it would have been much lower of a rating as a novel, I say so as a result of the fact that it would have suffered from the key problem with a lot of suspends novels: The sheer number of pages behind the current one always tells you they're going to be fine.

If you are picking up this book, you are doing so knowing enough about Apollo 13 that you know what you're getting into. This book is exactly that: The story of the Apollo 13 near-disaster, told from both the ground and from space, with a concise explanation at the end of what caused it. It reads well, and is definitely worth your time. ( )
  cargocontainer | Jun 19, 2012 |
"Houston we've had a problem."

On April 11, 1970, Jim Lovell, Fred Haise and Jack Swigart blasted off from Earth on a journey to the moon. Three days later there was an explosion that ended the mission and almost ended their lives. For four days they barely slept and did their best to limp home on limited power and oxygen. This story describes in detail the actions of the crew and Mission Control to save Apollo 13 from an uncertain fate.

I liked the various perspectives presented from the Apollo 13 crew to Mission Control to the Lovell household. It was interesting to see how everyone involved reacted to the situation and especially how the team in Houston handled the various problems with the compromised mission. Reading the story from a 2012 perspective I felt somewhat removed from the issues. The idea that that one problem could cause an almost complete meltdown of the spacecraft seems foreign. Today it seems as if there are redundancies for any complex piece of machinery and any issues have long been worked out. But you have to remember that space program was still fairly young in 1970. Man had only landed on the moon one year prior this mission.

As well, the authors did a good job of creating empathy towards the characters. Despite knowing the ultimate outcome of this mission due to its historical nature, I worried about the Apollo 13 crew. I wanted them to be safe. I especially appreciated the attention to detail within Mission control and the spacecraft. The reader experiences the flight just as the crew did and I found the tecnobabble tired me out. Far from being annoyed at this, it let me identify with crew and the tireless Mission Control employees who even slept at work during the crises.

It was jarring to have Lovell as a co-author and yet the book wasn't in first person from his perspective. I do understand that it wouldn’t have made sense to write the story that way due to the various perspectives presented. It did make the book seem colder and less personable, creating distance between the reader and the story.

One thing I didn’t like was the chronological jumping around in Lovell's and NASA's timeline. I got used to it though, jumping from before Lovell was in the space program to his other space missions to Apollo 13. The problem was everytime we cut away from what was happening on Apollo 13 to a different time, it undercut the tension. If the reader is in the midst of worrying about this three man crew and then they're given a chance to relax by switching to an earlier point in history, it diminishes the excitement the story creates. While I believe that a book told chronologically can be somewhat old hat these days, in this case it would have kept my attention for the entirety of the story. As well, the book was filled with dates and technical details and procedures so it was difficult to separate out and remember all that was going on with Apollo 13 when I came back to chapters regarding their missions.

Overall I had a blast reading this book. If you are interested in the history of space travel and don't mind a few technical details read this book! ( )
  theduckthief | Mar 14, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jim Lovellprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kluger, Jeffreymain authorall editionsconfirmed
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This true adventure is dedicated to those earthbound astronauts: my wife, Marilyn, and my children, Barbara, Jay, Susan, and Jeffrey, who shared with me the fears and anxieties of four days in April, 1970.
- Jim Lovell
With love to my family -- nuclear and extended, past and present -- for providing an always stable orbit.
- Jeffrey Kluger
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Nobody knew how the stories about the poison pills got started. (Prologue)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0671534645, Mass Market Paperback)

On April 13, 1970, three American astronauts were on their way to the moon when a mysterious explosion rocked their ship, forcing them to abandon the main ship and spend four days in the tiny lunar module which was intended to support two men for two days. A harrowing story of danger, courage and brilliant off-the-cuff engineering solutions which resulted in a dramatic rescue.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:51:42 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Chronicles the rescue mission to return the crewmen of the Apollo 13 spacecraft safely to earth following an explosion on board.

» see all 3 descriptions

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