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Book Review:  You Wouldn't Want to Be on Apollo 13

Reviewed by: Veronica Ann Zabala-Aliberto
Title: You Wouldn’t Want to Be on Apollo 13! A Mission You’d Rather Not Go On
Author: Ian Graham
Illustrator: David Amtram
Reading Level: Ages 9-16
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Publisher: Franklin Watts
Date: 2003
Retail Price: $9.95
ISBN: 0531166503

“It is April 1970. You are an astronaut that is about to climb into a spacecraft and fly to the Moon.”

This humorous account of the Apollo era illustrates the realities of what the Apollo 13 crew encountered while going to the Moon. Funny illustrations and fully-descriptive captions recreate the series of events that caused many serious problems for the crew, and show how they made it safely back home to Earth.

As you read this nail-biting account of the Apollo 13 mission, you become a crew member yourself. You say “Good Bye” to the Earth and experience all the problems the crew faced on the mission famous for the line, “Houston, we have a problem.” You train for weightlessness with the Apollo 13 crew, practice making spacewalks underwater, and learn how to work with specialized tools you will use on the Moon. You learn that the Apollo spacecraft was built in the Vehicle Assembly Building at Cape Canaveral, Florida (now Kennedy Space Center) and that it will be your home-away-from-home while you travel to the Moon.

I highly recommend this book to those who want to learn more about the Apollo program in a way that is not only informative, but fun to read. This book compliments NASA’s Vision for Exploration efforts to get us back to the Moon and also meets national curriculum standards for science: history and nature of science, and social studies. This literary work is a must in every classroom around the world!

© 2006 Veronica Ann Zabala-Aliberto

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