The History of Human Space Flight by author/historian Ted Spitzmiller sets the gold standard for history books about space flight. This book gives the reader a true education in its 600+ pages of great storytelling. It might be "history" but the author makes the book feel like you are getting a personal tour of the space program from all the experts. Not only does he give us a great inside look at our own space program (NASA) but also some inside information on what the USSR was doing and what Germany contributed to both space programs. Insightful and informative.
I found the book to be more than I had expected or hoped it might be. It left me satisfied that I had gotten a full picture of what transpired: the early efforts to get rockets into space, the first daring men to ride rocket ships into space, and the moon landings. This is truly an adventure story witnessed by the world, but until now it was not documented so we could all fully appreciate and understand. This book has filled that gap of knowledge with abundant information and data and stories about real people who had courage.
This book is on my personal bookshelf and I will have my grandchildren read it. I salute the author's efforts. Well done!
Review by Bill McDonald (May 2019)
Provides a broad perspective on the efforts to send humans into space. Beginning with the aerostats (balloons) of the 18th century through the rocket planes of the 1950s, to the space race between the Soviet Union and the United States. All of the efforts are chronicled along with coverage of the key technologies and principle individuals involved (including management and technical support). Extensively illustrated with a detailed index.
Book Format(s): Hard cover
Review Genre: Nonfiction—History
Number of Pages: 633