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Mercury Rising: John Glenn, John Kennedy,…

Mercury Rising: John Glenn, John Kennedy, and the New Battleground of the… (original 2021; edition 2021)

by Jeff Shesol (Author)

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343586,749 (4.58)None
Title:Mercury Rising: John Glenn, John Kennedy, and the New Battleground of the Cold War
Authors:Jeff Shesol (Author)
Info:W W Norton (2021), 416 pages
Collections:Your library

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Mercury Rising: John Glenn, John Kennedy, and the New Battleground of the Cold War by Jeff Shesol (2021)


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5757. Mercury Rising John Glenn, John Kennedy, and the New Battleground of the Cold War, by Jeff Shesol (read 29 Sep 2021) This account of the 1962 Mercury project, published in 2021, is a superlative telling of the events of the early 1960s and of John Glenn's triple orbiting of the earth in February 1962. Even though I closely followed the events of that time this telling is so exciting I was utterly absorbed by the book, and continually needed to remind myself as I read that John Glenn not only survived but went on to serve as a U.S. Senator from Ohio. I never had any doubt as I read that the book deserved five stars. No matter how much you have read about space events this is a book you will want to read. ( )
  Schmerguls | Sep 20, 2021 |
A compelling history of the Mercury space program, it's failures, triumphs, and it's political and cultural significance. Culminating in a tense, almost thriller like, account of John Glenn’s orbital flight and it's impact on a troubled US in the early 1960s. Well researched and written; I certainly discovered some things I'd not read elsewhere about the Mercury missions.

But perhaps this book’s greatest achievement is adding depth and nuance to the character of John Glenn who is all too often depicted as a the one dimensional “straight-laced puritan” of the astronaut corp. This account shows him as a man with fears, flaws, and hopes alongside the driven focused work ethic. Highly recommended if you have any interest in the early days of space flight. ( )
  gothamajp | Aug 14, 2021 |
A unique look at a pivotal event in the United States, MERCURY RISING, by Jeff Shesol, looks at the men and the politics of John Glenn's historic first American space orbit on February 20th, 1962. Rather than considering this monumental accomplishment from a scientific and mechanical point of view, Shesol looks at the people and the climate first and the technical part second. That being said, Shesol thoroughly describes the technical aspects of space flight, the ships used, and everything else that comes with space travel and covers those topics in ways that unscientific minds can understand. The focus of the book is mostly on Glenn, Kennedy, and the space race itself. I enjoyed reading about all of the politics along with Glenn's personal journey, but there are times in the book that just felt a little redundant. The delays before Glenn's launch to space generated frustration throughout the country, from politicians, to reporters, to Glenn, and even the general public. The book spend a lot of time taking the reader through each delay and it felt like I was reading the same few pages over and over again for a while. At the end though, when Shesol walks the reader through that amazing voyage, he expertly and efficiently describes everything, from the ship, to Glenn's perceptions and feelings, to everyone on earth's reactions to such an astounding flight.
For someone who was not around in 1962, I feel like I can better appreciate everything that led up to that first flight and how it impacted the world now that I have read this book.
Thank you to W. W. Norton & Company, Jeff Shesol, and Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! ( )
  EHoward29 | May 17, 2021 |
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