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Orbit by John J. Nance
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Orbit (edition 2006)

by John J. Nance

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1931061,059 (3.64)8
Member:lasvegasbookie
Title:Orbit
Authors:John J. Nance
Info:Simon & Schuster Ltd (2006), Hardcover, 368 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:Fiction, Space flight, Space vehicle accidents

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Orbit by John J. Nance

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» See also 8 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
How would things be different, if we knew how things would end? If we knew that the end of our life would require a recounting of our days, to be read by the population of the world, would we live a thoughtful life? If we knew the time, method, and manner of our deaths, would we think before we act? Give mercy instead of contempt? Patience and thoughtfulness instead of intolerance and selfishness? Would we stop on the street to offer a hand to a lonely man? Would so much of our lives be wrapped up in petty angers, in jealousy and rage? Would envy rule our lives, or the tedium of jobs and chores and routine so blind our eye to life?

How would things be different, if we could think clearly, in our true knowledge of the fleeting quality of our lives? Would we war among ourselves, devote ourselves to hating 'the other' for the way they live their lives? For their religion, their beliefs, the colour of their skins? Would we open our eyes to how small we truly are, and how much we need one another, how very alike we really are?

What would it take, to really stop the world, if only for a time? To make us see and understand just how fragile and precious this thing called life really is?

Mr. Nance has written a book that gives you the opportunity to think of all these things and more. To place yourself in the place of the main character, and realize in just how many ways our day-to-day lives are wasted on the petty nuances of life - to wish with him, with all our hearts, that we could have led a fuller, richer, purer life.

I never really thought of Mr. Nance as a sociologist, but rather as a terrific technical writer. I have read his books for the 'techie' aspects. He knows avionics exceptionally well, and writes in a clear and riveting manner about the technical sides, in an edge-of-the-seat manner that often keeps me awake well into the night. But with "Orbit", it is almost as if I never quite saw the depth of Mr. Nance's character, of his clear understanding of the human psyche in times of ultimate stress. He made me wish, very much, that his story could be real - that the world could, if only for a week, forget their envies and their greed, their petty indignities and spite, their deeply ingrained hatreds and misunderstandings. To simply watch, and think.

Of course, sociological and emotional points aside, this is definitely an intelligent thriller, with a level of technical expertise that lives up to Mr. Nance's reputation. The concept is fascinating, and well within the realm of reality as corporations begin to research the feasibility of space travel, both financial and technical. These are interesting times, and Mr. Nance has done an amazing job of allowing us to look to the future with hope rather than despair. ( )
  soireadthisbooktoday | May 4, 2014 |
How would things be different, if we knew how things would end? If we knew that the end of our life would require a recounting of our days, to be read by the population of the world, would we live a thoughtful life? If we knew the time, method, and manner of our deaths, would we think before we act? Give mercy instead of contempt? Patience and thoughtfulness instead of intolerance and selfishness? Would we stop on the street to offer a hand to a lonely man? Would so much of our lives be wrapped up in petty angers, in jealousy and rage? Would envy rule our lives, or the tedium of jobs and chores and routine so blind our eye to life?

How would things be different, if we could think clearly, in our true knowledge of the fleeting quality of our lives? Would we war among ourselves, devote ourselves to hating 'the other' for the way they live their lives? For their religion, their beliefs, the colour of their skins? Would we open our eyes to how small we truly are, and how much we need one another, how very alike we really are?

What would it take, to really stop the world, if only for a time? To make us see and understand just how fragile and precious this thing called life really is?

Mr. Nance has written a book that gives you the opportunity to think of all these things and more. To place yourself in the place of the main character, and realize in just how many ways our day-to-day lives are wasted on the petty nuances of life - to wish with him, with all our hearts, that we could have led a fuller, richer, purer life.

I never really thought of Mr. Nance as a sociologist, but rather as a terrific technical writer. I have read his books for the 'techie' aspects. He knows avionics exceptionally well, and writes in a clear and riveting manner about the technical sides, in an edge-of-the-seat manner that often keeps me awake well into the night. But with "Orbit", it is almost as if I never quite saw the depth of Mr. Nance's character, of his clear understanding of the human psyche in times of ultimate stress. He made me wish, very much, that his story could be real - that the world could, if only for a week, forget their envies and their greed, their petty indignities and spite, their deeply ingrained hatreds and misunderstandings. To simply watch, and think.

Of course, sociological and emotional points aside, this is definitely an intelligent thriller, with a level of technical expertise that lives up to Mr. Nance's reputation. The concept is fascinating, and well within the realm of reality as corporations begin to research the feasibility of space travel, both financial and technical. These are interesting times, and Mr. Nance has done an amazing job of allowing us to look to the future with hope rather than despair. ( )
  Leiahc | May 4, 2013 |
How would things be different, if we knew how things would end? If we knew that the end of our life would require a recounting of our days, to be read by the population of the world, would we live a thoughtful life? If we knew the time, method, and manner of our deaths, would we think before we act? Give mercy instead of contempt? Patience and thoughtfulness instead of intolerance and selfishness? Would we stop on the street to offer a hand to a lonely man? Would so much of our lives be wrapped up in petty angers, in jealousy and rage? Would envy rule our lives, or the tedium of jobs and chores and routine so blind our eye to life?

How would things be different, if we could think clearly, in our true knowledge of the fleeting quality of our lives? Would we war among ourselves, devote ourselves to hating 'the other' for the way they live their lives? For their religion, their beliefs, the colour of their skins? Would we open our eyes to how small we truly are, and how much we need one another, how very alike we really are?

What would it take, to really stop the world, if only for a time? To make us see and understand just how fragile and precious this thing called life really is?

Mr. Nance has written a book that gives you the opportunity to think of all these things and more. To place yourself in the place of the main character, and realize in just how many ways our day-to-day lives are wasted on the petty nuances of life - to wish with him, with all our hearts, that we could have led a fuller, richer, purer life.

I never really thought of Mr. Nance as a sociologist, but rather as a terrific technical writer. I have read his books for the 'techie' aspects. He knows avionics exceptionally well, and writes in a clear and riveting manner about the technical sides, in an edge-of-the-seat manner that often keeps me awake well into the night. But with "Orbit", it is almost as if I never quite saw the depth of Mr. Nance's character, of his clear understanding of the human psyche in times of ultimate stress. He made me wish, very much, that his story could be real - that the world could, if only for a week, forget their envies and their greed, their petty indignities and spite, their deeply ingrained hatreds and misunderstandings. To simply watch, and think.

Of course, sociological and emotional points aside, this is definitely an intelligent thriller, with a level of technical expertise that lives up to Mr. Nance's reputation. The concept is fascinating, and well within the realm of reality as corporations begin to research the feasibility of space travel, both financial and technical. These are interesting times, and Mr. Nance has done an amazing job of allowing us to look to the future with hope rather than despair. ( )
  Leiahc | May 4, 2013 |
Kip Dawson’s longtime dream is to fly into space. When he wins a seat aboard the American Space Adventures’ shuttle Intrepid, little does he know that this incredible once in a lifetime journey will also change the course of his life in a manner no human being could ever foresee or imagine.

After months of training as a substitute astronaut, Kip’s launch date has arrived, and although his wife and son are angry with him for being so selfish due to the high risk this flight carries, he decides that for once in his life it is time to focus on his own dreams instead of that of others. As engines ignite and lift-off rumbles through the rocket, Kip is strapped in his seat behind Intrepid’s only other passenger, pilot Bill Campbell. When fear and adrenaline pump through Kip’s body, he suddenly doubts his decision and his life begins to flash before him.

Arriving in outer space to view the wonders of the galaxy, the lives of Kip and Bill quickly and dramatically spin out of control as a small undetected meteor hits the Intrepid, punching a hole in the cockpit and killing Bill instantly. Sudden panic overwhelms Kip Dawson when realization that he is alone up there, descends over him like a shroud. He has no communication to earth, no way to yell “Mayday”, and no button to push that will allow him to say “Houston,…we have a problem!”. Kip then desperately grabs for instruction manuals on how to keep himself alive aboard this rocket bound for hell. He finds that systems are not working, and engines won’t fire in order to turn him around and get him out of Dodge. His only salvation as the reality of imminent death ensues, is an onboard laptop computer that he decides to use to chronicle his life’s biography in case someone in the future finds this stranded heap of metal floating in space. Hour after hour, day after day as time runs out, Kip details pages and pages of his life. All of his regrets, sorrows, feelings of guilt, anger, lack of personal happiness, as well as his most desired dreams, pour out from his heart through his fingers as he types by star light. Paragraphs of his life expectations and moments of joy include heaps of personal intimate thoughts of life, love, and the pursuit of happiness, including his wildest sexual fantasies.

Little does he know that his journal from space is being read by a 12 year-old computer hacker in Kalgoorie Australia that has somehow latched on to Kip’s ramblings. At first thinking this was one heck of a scammer’s joke, young Alistair Wood gets a jolt when he comes to the heart stopping conclusion that this is real and he better call NASA.

As Kip Dawson’s biography screams across every television, radio, computer, cell phone and billboard with live download feeds scrolling his every word across the planet, the world becomes enthralled and captivated by the mind of a man soon to die in outer space as he chronicles the life he has already lived, as well as the one he wishes he had if he could start all over. Orbit is an entrancing story that is simply one that readers will not be able to set down from start to finish. It is a novel that is totally engaging, and a tale that is very different offering a nice change of pace. This is an amazing story sure to have you philosophizing about your own life with all its dreams and past regrets. Orbit by John J.Nance is a top-notch fictional suspense yarn that serves up a lot of thought provoking ingredients, edge-of-your-seat suspense, and exemplary writing! ( )
  vernefan | Jul 17, 2011 |
This was my first John Nance book. The premise/jacket cover sounded great, but I don't think Mr. Nance delivered. The story was predictable and the action not so great. But, this is coming from a hard-core nerd that loves hard-core sci-fi. I would recommend this as a good read for non-nerds, as the technical detail is just enough for the layman, with an okay story to boot. ( )
  geordicalrissian | Aug 30, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0743250524, Hardcover)

The year is 2009. For Kip Dawson, winning a passenger seat on American Space Adventure's spacecraft is a dream come true. One grand shot of insanity and he can return to earth fulfilled. But the thrill of the successful launch turns to terror when a micrometeorite penetrates the capsule, leaving the radios as dead as the pilot. Reality hits: Kip isn't going home. With nothing to do but wait for his doomed fate, Kip writes his epitaph on the ship's laptop computer, unaware that an audience of millions has discovered it and is tracking his every word on the Internet. As a massive struggle gets under way to rescue him, Kip has no idea that the world can hear his cries - or that his heroism in the face of death may sabotage his best chance of survival.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:34:37 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A passenger on a 2009 space flight, Kip Dawson faces death after a micrometeorite damages the capsule and kills the pilot, and types his epitaph on the ship's computer, unaware that his writings are being read on the Internet by a horrified public.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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