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Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13 (1994)

by Jim Lovell, Jeffrey Kluger

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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1,975376,885 (4.24)34
Chronicles the rescue mission to return the crewmen of the Apollo 13 spacecraft safely to earth following an explosion on board.
  1. 10
    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.
  2. 00
    Ice by Shane Johnson (dukeallen)
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» See also 34 mentions

English (34)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (36)
Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
Good writing. World class story. ( )
  jcvogan1 | Jan 21, 2022 |
A good book has the ability to tell a story you already know in a way that keeps you interested. I've read a lot about Apollo 13, seen the movie at least a dozen times (which isn't totally accurate but darn close), and am very familiar with the space program due to a lot of interest. In fact, I'm reasonably certain I read this book 25 years or so ago. So I already knew how this book was going to end. Yet it still kept me interested.

The only technical thing about the book that made me cringe is when the authors wrote things like "28 volts of current flowed through the system." I have three degrees in electrical engineering. Voltage is not current. ( )
  lemontwist | Feb 14, 2021 |
After an opening chapter devoted to the tragedy of the Apollo 1 capsule fire that claimed the lives of astronauts Gus Grissom, Ed White, and Roger Chaffee, the unfolding story fast-forwards to preparations for the December 1968 launch of Apollo 8, with Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders becoming the first astronauts to orbit the moon.

After a chapter of Lovell’s backstory, the narrative moves forward to April 1970 and the preparations for the Apollo 13 mission. This will be the third time astronauts have left their footprints on the lunar surface, this time near Fra Mauro. Commander Jim Lovell, Lunar Module Pilot Fred Haise, and command Module Pilot Jack Swigert are the three crewmembers; Lovell and Haise will become the fifth and sixth men to walk on the moon. For this springtime mission, following the successful missions of both Apollo 11 and Apollo 12, the expectation is that Apollo 13 will be more of the same.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Some fifty-five hours into the mission, the explosion of an oxygen tank results in Lovell’s strikingly understated message, “Ah, Houston, we’ve had a problem.” [Better known from the film [changed for the dramatic effect] as, “Houston, we have a problem,” this is arguably one of the three most famous spaceflight-related quotes.]

What follows is the account, from the astronauts’ perspective, of the harrowing events filling the next four days as the world held its collective breath, praying for the crew of the crippled spacecraft to make it home safely. The riveting story is heart-stopping and is certain to keep readers on the edge of their seats, turning pages as fast as possible as the hair-raising story plays out.

An Epilogue takes a more in-depth look at the cause of the oxygen tank explosion. Appendices include three lists: the Apollo 13 Mission Timeline, the people involved in the Apollo 13 mission, and a brief overview of each of the Apollo missions. A photo section is also included.

Highly recommended. ( )
1 vote jfe16 | Jan 10, 2021 |
This was a fabulous read that captured the essence of this historic mission. There is enough technical detail to whet my appetite, while the writing style made this account eminently readable. Although I don't always feel comfortable with the flashback style of writing, I have to admit it was put to good use here.

What increased my interest in this book was its conversion into the screenplay for the move of the same title. The movie departs from the book in several significant ways that mostly reflect Hollywood's business practices--for example inflating astronaut Ken Mattingly's role in the rescue in order to keep a headlining actor (Gary Sinese) properly employed. In my opinion, real history is just as dramatic as anything Hollywood screenwriters come up with, and sometimes better. It's just a shame that actors as history conscious as Tom Hanks and Sinese still cannot distill more accuracy out of their films. ( )
  Adakian | Dec 14, 2020 |
I was fortunate enough to have my copy of the book signed by the author! On my birthday no less!
  DanielleBates | Sep 16, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (21 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lovell, Jimprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kluger, Jeffreymain authorall editionsconfirmed
Biström, PirkkoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Herrmann, EdwardNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Dedication
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.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is a book, not a film.
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Chronicles the rescue mission to return the crewmen of the Apollo 13 spacecraft safely to earth following an explosion on board.

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