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List of Reviewed Non-Fiction Books

Most recently added non-fiction reviews listed first
See non-fiction book list alphabetically by title
See non-fiction book list alphabetically by author
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  • Asteroid Hunters, by Carrie Nugent (2017). Saving Earth from asteroid strikes begins with finding them. This is the story of how that happens.
  • Starship Century: Toward the Grandest Horizon, edited by James and Gregory Benford (2013). Collection of articles and science fiction stories about achieving interstellar travel, which inspired the 100-Year Starship Symposium.
  • Mars: Making Contact, by Rod Pyle (2016). A book about Mars missions, the successes and failures and the many challenges and solutions involved.
  • Cosmonauts: Birth of the Space Age, edited by Doug Millard (2015). A companion book to a special exhibition at the Science Museum in London which tells the story of human space travel from the Soviet point of view.
  • The Twenty-First Century In Space, by Ben Evans (2015). The sixth and final volume of space historian Ben Evans’ monumental History of Human Space Exploration series.
  • Adventures in Space Advocacy, by Michael J. Mackowski (2015). A personal story of 35 years of space advocacy by a principle activist in the St. Louis and Phoenix NSS chapters.
  • How We’ll Live on Mars, by Stephen L. Petranek (2015). This book predicts that humans will land on Mars via privately-owned spacecraft in 2027.
  • Marketing the Moon, by David Meerman Scott and Richard Jurek (2014). Well-written and well-researched work that provides a unique perspective on the Apollo program: how it was marketed to the public.
  • The Astronaut Wives Club, by Lily Koppel (2013). How the wives of the early astronauts dealt with the intense pressure of their new-found celebrity.
  • Sky Alert: When Satellites Fail, by Les Johnson (2013). Compelling account of how tenuous and entwined our existence has become with orbiting satellites.
  • Mission to Mars: My Vision for Space Exploration, by Buzz Aldrin and Leonard David (2013). Apollo astronaut and developer of the Aldrin Mars Cycler which could provide regular service between Earth and Mars, gives his vision of humanity's future in space.
  • Men Into Space, by John C. Fredriksen (2012). The story of the 1959 television series about human space flight.
  • Forever Young: A Life of Adventure in Air and Space, by John W. Young with James R. Hansen (2012). What makes this book different than other astronauts' memoirs is the comprehensive technical detail he uses to describe each of his missions and his entire career at NASA.
  • The Visioneers, by W. Patrick McCray (2012). "How a Group of Elite Scientists Pursued Space Colonies, Nanotechnologies, and a Limitless Frontier."
  • Colonizing Mars: The Mission to the Red Planet, by Robert Zubrin, Harrison Schmitt, Edgar Mitchell, et. al. (2012). Anthology of thought-provoking essays on the reasons for sending humans to the Red Planet and what challenges will impact the effort.
  • The Planet-Girded Suns, by Sylvia Engdahl (2012). A thought-provoking history of human thought about extrasolar worlds. For young adult to adult.
  • Abundance, by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler (2012). The authors masterfully synthesize data on the forces that can make nine billion people live a life of abundance within 25 years.
  • Megacatastrophes, by David Darling and Dirk Schulze-Makuch (2012). An astronomer and an astrobiologist describe nine ways the world could end.
  • Drifting on Alien Winds, by Michael Carroll (2011). Vivid descriptions, stunning photo assemblies, and inspiring original artwork provide a grand tour of solar system weather.
  • Lunar Settlements, Edited by Haym Benaroya (2010). Comprehensive collection of papers from the 2007 Rutgers University Symposium on Lunar Settlements.
  • How to Find a Habitable Planet, by James Kasting (2010). Kasting, a distinguished professor of geosciences at Penn State University, has worked to detect habitable worlds outside our solar system, and in this clear and accessible book he introduces readers to the advanced methodologies being used in this extraordinary quest.
  • Paradise Regained: The Regreening of Earth, by Les Johnson, Gregory L. Matloff, C Bangs (2009). How humans might use the resources of the solar system for terrestrial benefit, allowing civilization to live in harmony with the environment.
  • Secrets of the Universe, by Paul Murdin (2009). A storyteller's history of astronomy, constructed like a collection of short stories that invites readers to delve into it at any point, that makes the most complex topics accessible and absorbing.
  • Living in Space, edited by Sherry Bell (2009). 21 essays on the cultural and social dynamics, opportunities, and challenges in permanent space habitats.
  • Missions to the Moon, by Rod Pyle (2009). With relatively few pages, this book is oversized and crammed with information — even with all the other histories out there, a valuable and fun book.
  • Voices from the Moon, by Andrew Chaikin with Victoria Kohl (2009). High-def photos combined with the words of the lunar astronauts themselves makes this book a cut above.
  • License to Orbit, by Joseph Pelton and Peter Marshall (2009). Knowledgeable authors cover the wide spectrum of space tourism operations.
  • Homesteading Space: The Skylab Story, by David Hitt, Owen Garriott, and Joe Kerwin (2008). Provides an excellent oral history of the Skylab program, including Alan Bean’s complete journal from the Skylab II mission.
  • NASA/ART: 50 Years of Exploration, edited by James D. Dean and Bertram Ulrich (2008). Showcases some of the paintings that NASA commissioned as part of its historic art program.
  • A Passion for Mars, by Andrew Chaikin (2008). The author of the landmark A Man on the Moon offers striking new information about humankind’s quest for the Red Planet.
  • Saturn 1/1B, by Alan Lawrie (2008). A comprehensive history of the rocket that started the Apollo program on its way to the Moon.
  • How to Live on Mars, by Robert Zubrin (2008). Everything you need to know to achieve Great Wealth and Fame on Mars.
  • Red Moon Rising, by Matthew Brzezinski (2007). Captures the essence of the opening of the Space Age with masterful political savvy.
  • Apollo EECOM: Journey of a Lifetime, by Sy Liebergot (2008 reprint from 2003). A unique first person account of the behind-the-scenes drama that unfolded on Apollo and Skylab missions.
  • Canada's Fifty Years in Space, by Gordon Shepherd and Agnes Kruchio (2008). As enjoyable to read as it is a thoroughly comprehensive history of Canada's space efforts.
  • Mars Wars, by Thor Hogan (2007). Chronicles the reasons for the failure of the Space Exploration Initiative (SEI) in the early 1990s.
  • Moonrush, by Dennis Wingo (2004). Makes a strong case that there are important reasons for humans to return to the Moon, as well as why past efforts have failed.
  • New Moon Rising, by Frank Sietzen Jr. and Keith Cowing (2004). Provides the inside story of the formation of a major space policy in 2004: The Vision for Space Exploration.
  • Tourists in Space, by Erik Seedhouse (2008). A nuts-and-bolts look at suborbital and orbital space tourism, particularly for those people considering signing up for a ride into space.
  • The Lunar Exploration Scrapbook, by Robert Godwin (2007). A fascinating tour of more than 200 proposed lunar vehicles, with beautiful color illustrations and designs that until now have existed only as blueprints.
  • First Man, by James R. Hansen (2005). The first-ever authorized biography of Neil Armstrong, masterfully written by James Hansen, a professor of history at Auburn University.
  • The Living Cosmos, by Chris Impey (2007). A readable survey of astrobiology and how it may lead to deeper knowledge of our place in the universe.
  • Von Braun, by Michael Neufeld (2007). Probably the definitive biography of this "dreamer of space, engineer of war."
  • Astro Turf, by M. G. Lord (2005). A personal account of how JPL's hierarchical, male-oriented management structure gradually shifted to a more inclusive model.
  • Riding Rockets, by Mike Mullane (2006). Former NASA astronaut Mike Mullane pulls back the cover on the astronaut corps, revealing the humor and humanity missing from the agency's official biographies.
  • 50 Years in Space, by Patrick Moore, illustrated by David A. Hardy (2006). Noted author-astronomer and BBC commentator attempts to rekindle the wonder of the Space Age.
  • The Case for Mars, by Robert Zubrin (1996/1997). "Bob Zubrin really, nearly alone, changed our thinking on this issue."—Carl Sagan
  • The Singularity is Near, by Ray Kurzweil (2006). How might the hypothetical "Technological Singularity"—when computers become smarter than humans and take over their own evolution—affect space development?
  • ISScapades, by Donald A. Beattie (2007). Does an admirable job of providing the reader with an understanding of why we have the space station we have.
  • Rocketeers, by Michael Belfiore (2007). A personal glimpse into the space entrepreneur and why people will risk fortunes and even their lives in an effort to open space to a wider audience.
  • In the Shadow of the Moon, movie directed by David Sington and produced by Ron Howard (2007). Remember when the whole world looked up? Beautifully edited with new footage and no narration, the Apollo astronauts tell their own story.
  • Utilization of Space, edited by Berndt Feuerbacher and Heinz Stoewer (2005). A comprehensive scholarly book addressing how space contributes to the advancement and betterment of human society.
  • The Space Shuttle Decision, by T. A. Heppenheimer (1999). A masterful piece of research and writing, this volume deals with the technical, economic, and political factors in the initial decision to build the Shuttle (time period 1965-1972).
  • Too Far From Home, by Chris Jones (2007). The true story of what it was like to be stranded aboard the International Space Station after the loss of the Shuttle Columbia.
  • Roving Mars, by Steven W. Squyres (2005). The passionate story of the human perserverance involved in creating the Spirit and Opportunity rovers.
  • Across the Space Frontier, by Wernher von Braun, et. al. (1952). First in a set of three books that are expanded treatments of a series of articles in Collier's magazine that inspired a generation of Americans.
  • Conquest of the Moon, by Wernher von Braun, et. al. (1953). The greatest space visionaries of the 1950s lay out a highly ambitious plan for exploring the Moon.
  • The Exploration of Mars, by Wernher von Braun & Willey Ley (1956). The father of the U.S. space program and the founding president of the National Space Institute (now National Space Society) describes his plans for exploring Mars.
  • Where Is Everybody? Fifty Solutions to the Fermi Paradox, by Stephen Webb (2002). Are there any spacefaring civilizations out there? Either answer leads to a paradox. This stimulating feast for the mind is a scholarly yet highly readable work "for any reader interested in science and the sheer pleasure of speculative thinking."
  • A Traveler's Guide To Mars, by William K. Hartmann (2003). "A masterpiece of scientific writing for the general reader" that provides an integrated understanding of what makes Mars "tick."
  • Postcards from Mars, by Jim Bell (2006). A coffee-table book of fabulous photos that also includes the compelling human story behind the successful Spirit and Opportunity rovers.
  • Sex in Space, by Laura Woodmansee (2006). An interesting study in possibilities that have not as yet been documented, and a good starting point for future space tourists and planners.
  • Mining the Sky, by John S. Lewis (1997). One of the most important books space advocates can own. Provides a justification and roadmap for incorporating the material and energy resources of the solar system into the world’s economy.
  • Colonies in Space, by T. A. Heppenheimer (1977). The best book on space settlement written to date – full of colorful narrative and satisfying, but clearly explained, technical detail.
  • 2081: A Hopeful View of the Human Future, by Gerard K. O'Neill (1981). This second book by O'Neill describes his thoughts on anticipated advancements in computers, automation, space colonies, energy, and communications.
  • Saturn: A New View, by Laura Lovett, Joan Horvath, and Jeff Cuzzi (2006). An incredible volume of history, facts, and 150 awe-inspiring photographs of the planet and its moons, taken from the Cassini and Huygens spacecraft.
  • Saturn, by Alan Lawrie (2005). The definitive reference work on what is arguably the crowning achievement of American aerospace technology, the Saturn V Moon rocket.
  • The Space Tourist's Handbook, by Eric Anderson and Joshua Piven (2005). The "wealthy hitchhiker's" guide to space, with emphasis on the details of a Soyuz launch to the International Space Station.
  • The High Frontier: Human Colonies in Space, 3rd Edition, by Gerard K. O'Neill (2000). In one of THE great books about space development, O'Neill offered answers to most of humanity’s energy problems and at the same time planned for a grand expansion of the human race into the solar system.

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Updated Sun, Apr 9, 2017 at 23:57:47
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