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  Into That Silent Sea (Outward Odyssey series) (Page 3)

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Author Topic:   Into That Silent Sea (Outward Odyssey series)
FFrench
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posted 04-08-2007 01:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by eurospace:
I am happy to report that someone must have walked all the way through the Silent Sea (like Moses did) and brought the book to amazon.co.uk. In other words: I picked mine from the parcel box Friday.

Thanks for that update, Jurgen - glad to hear your copy has arrived. Look forward to hearing what you think of it. Indeed, I heard from some English colleagues last week that their copies ordered from Amazon UK were arriving - good to hear it's happening for the rest of Europe now too. As we are technically still before the official release date of the book (later this month), this is very encouraging!

FFrench
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posted 04-08-2007 09:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Following the Wally Schirra Apollo 7-themed gag photo earlier in this thread, Dee O'Hara joined the game with this photo, while signing some copies of the book with me. Nurse's orders!!

dss65
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posted 04-10-2007 09:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dss65   Click Here to Email dss65     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Almost not fair! I wanted the book in the first place, then Wally calls upon all of us Turtles to buy it, and now Dee?!!!!!! ANYTHING for Dee!!!!!! Order placed.

FFrench
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posted 04-12-2007 12:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks Don!

dss65
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posted 04-12-2007 10:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dss65   Click Here to Email dss65     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Grab this one up, folks!

dss65
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posted 04-24-2007 09:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dss65   Click Here to Email dss65     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I've just finished Chapter 2, and I've got to say that I'm very impressed. The Dee O'Hara written about here certainly rings true as the Dee O'Hara that I had the extreme pleasure of spending some time with in Burbank--the Dee that remembers your name and treats you like a somebody, even if--like me--you are a nobody, who introduces you to others as if you are a friend, and who seems to have difficulty accepting the fact that she is, in fact, a legend.

Based on how accurately she is presented, I am really looking forward to the rest of this book. Nice job, fellas!

FFrench
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posted 04-25-2007 12:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you, Don! Look forward to hearing what you think of the rest of the book!

quote:
Originally posted by dss65:
the Dee that remembers your name and treats you like a somebody, even if--like me--you are a nobody, who introduces you to others as if you are a friend, and who seems to have difficulty accepting the fact that she is, in fact, a legend.
That's her! An extremely humble person, who still finds it hard to believe we all find her and her stories so interesting. As well as that chapter, her stories and insights appear throughout the rest of the book, and the next book too. She told Colin and me that this book is the nearest there will ever be to a Dee O'Hara autobiography.

ColinBurgess
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posted 04-25-2007 04:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ColinBurgess   Click Here to Email ColinBurgess     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'll echo Francis's remarks about Dee. She is a great lady with terrific strength of character and a heart as big as Texas. The insights she gave us for our books are just pricless gems from a very rich and interesting life.

BTW, a very good and thoughtful review of the book can be found here.

KC Stoever
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posted 04-26-2007 10:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KC Stoever   Click Here to Email KC Stoever     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Colin, thanks for the link to that good review and congratulations to you and Francis!

divemaster
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posted 04-26-2007 10:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for divemaster   Click Here to Email divemaster     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My copy just arrived today with the Francis and Dee autographs. I guess I'll have to hit up Deputy Colin when we next meet. Looking forward to a good read.

If Bill Anders asked you to sign his book, I would've said, "well, I'll waive my usual fee if you'll sign this earthrise litho that I just happen to have with me". Quite an honor, Francis.

FFrench
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posted 04-27-2007 08:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by KC Stoever:
thanks for the link to that good review and congratulations to you and Francis!

Thanks Kris! And thanks again to you and your father for the very kind and informative assistance on the Aurora 7 chapter.

ColinBurgess
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posted 04-27-2007 05:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ColinBurgess   Click Here to Email ColinBurgess     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kris; Francis beat me to the punch. Thank you for your support, advice and professional assistance, for setting up those important first communications with your father, but most of all for your wisdom and friendship.

And Tracy, never fear - there'll be an opportunity coming up in about four months for anyone who wants to obtain my scrawl in their books. More details later on.

FFrench
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posted 04-28-2007 12:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by divemaster:
My copy just arrived today with the Francis and Dee autographs. I guess I'll have to hit up Deputy Colin when we next meet. Looking forward to a good read.
Great to hear you got your copy, and looking forward to your thoughts on it!
quote:
If Bill Anders asked you to sign his book, I would've said, "well, I'll waive my usual fee if you'll sign this earthrise litho that I just happen to have with me". Quite an honor, Francis.
Anders has been of immense help to the book project, particularly for the next book, out in the fall for which he and Valerie provided extensive interviews and proofreading for the Apollo 8 chapter. He's another one who told me he has no plans to ever write a book, so I'm glad we were able to capture so much of his story.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 05-23-2007 08:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
San Diego Union Tribune: Book looks at starring roles of first space travelers
For decades, people have been intrigued by mankind's voyages into space.

For Francis French of Oceanside, the fascination was with the voyagers themselves.

French collaborated with author Colin Burgess to write "Into That Silent Sea." The book is about the trailblazers of the Space Age from 1961 to 1965.

FFrench
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posted 05-23-2007 09:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks Robert. I should point out that, while Colin had the relative luxury for that interview of submitting quotes via E-mail, I had a reporter with a pad and pen interviewing me. All of my quotes in this article only vaguely resemble what I actually told her. For example, I'd never say that "most people" didn't know Wally Schirra was a punster...!

Still, hopefully it will encourage a few people here in town to go and look at a copy of the book.

divemaster
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posted 05-25-2007 09:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for divemaster   Click Here to Email divemaster     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
While I've only had time to read it in bits and pieces, I'm really enjoying this book. I'm through the Tereshkova chapter and have picked up on some facts of which I was previously unaware.

I wandered over to Amazon.Com to see what the reviewers have been saying about it and have noticed that there's a posting by one "Dee O'Hara" with a glowing review. Nothing better than a great review from someone who witnessed the whole thing, y'know? Either that or Erin French bribed her with a batch of cookies.

bruce
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posted 06-26-2007 07:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for bruce   Click Here to Email bruce     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just read a new review of Into That Silent Sea:

Having had my own work "reviewed" in print, it's always amusing to read a review where you can almost sense the writer wanting to include that famous "critics choice" take-away sentence that begins with "However ..." I think they learn this at Critics College as a way to convince the reader that they're the authority on the subject.

The last line of the review states: "This book doesn't explain the fascination with the early history of the Space Age, but does help satisfy it." I would argue that trying to "explain the fascination with the early history of the Space Age" is like trying to explain Beatlemania. How can you truly explain something that can only be felt?

Also, sometimes the reviewer shows their own lack of knowledge on the subject, as in the case here where the deliberate pairing of Carpenter and Glenn in one chapter of the book totally escapes him.

All in all though, another positive review for one of the best (in my opinion) space books on the shelves!

Naraht
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posted 06-26-2007 10:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Naraht   Click Here to Email Naraht     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ColinBurgess:
This will be the first of ten books overall that tells the entire social or human history of space flight. It's a massive undertaking, and one which we hope will be widely supported.
As a social historian myself (eighteenth and nineteenh centuries) I was very excited to read this. However, I was then a little disappointed to read that it focuses on the stories of the astronauts rather than on the social history of the space program more broadly. Many more people worked for NASA than just the astronauts, and many more people were involved in the space program besides NASA employees. Will the forthcoming books in the series take a wider or less anecdotal focus?

I apologize if my question has been answered elsewhere. Given that I only found this thread today, I am already a little behind!

DavidH
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posted 06-26-2007 11:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DavidH   Click Here to Email DavidH     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A full description of the series can be found here.

In response to your question, I imagine the answer will vary from volume-to-volume. ITSS, which is rather "astronaut-heavy" in that regard, still has excellent anecdotes from the ground-bound. The book on space probes, on the other hand, will almost certainly skew very heavily away from astronauts. (Though Jay could speak to that better than I.)

Our Skylab volume is still a ways from publication, but we collect many many stories from "behind-the-scenes" folks for the book.

FFrench
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posted 06-26-2007 05:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Naraht:
As a social historian myself (eighteenth and nineteenth centuries) I was very excited to read this. However, I was then a little disappointed to read that it focuses on the stories of the astronauts rather than on the social history of the space program more broadly. Many more people worked for NASA than just the astronauts, and many more people were involved in the space program besides NASA employees. Will the forthcoming books in the series take a wider or less anecdotal focus?

Very glad you found the thread!

Colin, as Series Editor, should be the one to fully reply, and David has provided a good answer with a great link to more information about the series.

I share your thoughts that there was (and is) indeed far more to NASA than astronauts, who often get a disproportionate amount of attention. I also agree fully that there is a need for wider-scope books or book series that explore this area. There are already some great ones out there - some of which I include amongst my favorite books - but there is certainly room for more.

When it comes to "Into That Silent Sea," we made a conscious decision, which we spell out in the introduction, to focus on a specific area. In this book the Cold War, the human urge to explore, the Space Race, are all interesting backdrops, but backdrops only, to a very human story. That is, a variety of very different kinds of people, from hugely different backgrounds and experiences, all found themselves at some time in their lives sitting on top of a rocket ready to launch.

There are spacefarer stories in the book that have been well-explored before, but I'd say that there are some real surprises in there even for people who think they know the whole story. Certainly, people heavily involved in the programs at the time have told us so.

I've had a similar initial response to yours with some recent books that focus on astronauts. For example, when reading about Andrew Smith's "Moondust," I at first thought, 'do we really need another book on moonwalkers?' As it was, it was a fresh, enjoyable, engaging take that I am glad he wrote and that I read. Despite a preponderance of books out there on astronauts, I think there is room for new ones when they take a fresh approach.

This has particularly been brought home to us with the recent losses of Gordon Cooper, Wally Schirra and Andrian Nikolayev, all of whom told us stories they had never before committed to print. It made us feel even more glad that we had talked to them and captured these stories when we did. They may otherwise have been lost forever.

You also only mention "NASA" and "astronauts" - I should point out that this book does give equal weighting to the cosmonauts, and explores their lives in equal detail, with a number of first-hand interviews. This is an area that really has not been explored too much, particularly in US-published works, in this way. Some readers and reviewers have really enjoyed this fresh aspect of the book. It also allows interesting comparisons with the astronauts that gives new light to their stories.

Where some of the spacefarers had already passed away, or where it enhanced the story to take it in new directions, we have extensive parts of the book based on talking with people such as Dee O'Hara and Jim Lewis - giving great credit to the "supporting cast" who, I agree, did vital but often unsung work. I think you'll also find the Apollo 1 chapter in our second book, "In The Shadow of the Moon," very interesting, as it is based almost entirely on the recollections of many non-astronauts associated with the program, talking about that sad day.

As David says, other books may take a slightly different tack. I have had the pleasure of reading his Skylab book draft, and I have to say, his marriage of recollections from both astronauts and others in the program is astoundingly good, and probably far more what you are looking for in a social history. It's an incredible book.

I should clarify something - our book is not, as you suggest, based on 'anecdotes,' which suggests tale-telling and thus a level of historical inaccuracy. While we do include much first-person material, and a good amount of opinion by and about the spacefarers which keeps the stories very personal, we worked very hard to ensure a level of technical and historical accuracy. Where opinion or conjecture was given, we tried to make that clear, and state whose opinion it was. The book is not a nuts-and-bolts technical / engineering book, nevertheless we tried very hard to bring some dry engineering that was vital to the story into vivid life.

It may be that this book is simply not going to be one that interests you - goodness knows, so many great books come out every month we all have to be picky -but if you do end up reading it, I'd be really interested in hearing here what you think of it, and if your opinion changes at all after you do.

Jay Gallentine
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posted 06-26-2007 08:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Gallentine   Click Here to Email Jay Gallentine     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
To expand on David's comment a bit, the volume on space probes has only a couple of astronaut cameos. I thought it might be interesting to look back at the Surveyor program while Pete Conrad and Al Bean are on the Moon attempting to remove pieces of Surveyor 3. That's about it.

I'd be happy to cover the work in more depth - albeit in another forum, so as not to detract from the topic of Colin and Francis' excellent work.

Thank you everyone, for your interest in the series! We are working hard to deliver great stories!

cspg
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posted 06-27-2007 03:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Naraht:
Will the forthcoming books in the series take a wider or less anecdotal focus?
I don't know if the following will address your question but I think it's related:

From NASA History Division quarterly newsletter (vol.23, issue 4, November 2006):

Societal Impact of Spaceflight
Conference: A View from the Audience
by Matthew Shindell, University of California, San Diego

The recent conference on the "Societal Impact of Spaceflight," cosponsored by the NASA History Division and the National Air and Space Museum's Department of Space History in Washington, DC, 19-21 September 2006, provided a unique opportunity for those engaged in the history of spaceflight to reflect on the impacts of spaceflight and space technology on all aspects of life in the space age. As NASA Chief Historian Steve Dick pointed out in his opening address, NASA had not evaluated its societal impacts in any organized, scholarly way since the early 1960s.
It is likely that this conference will be published as a book in the SP-4700 series.

Naraht
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posted 06-27-2007 04:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Naraht   Click Here to Email Naraht     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you all for your kind responses. Come to think of it, I did read and enjoy "Moondust," so I agree that there's room for new views of the astronauts and their story. I'll look forward to taking a look at this series and seeing what it has to offer.

In several threads recently there has been a lot of discussion about how and why we should write space history. Might it be worth starting another thread on the topic so that we don't drag these threads any further off topic?

FFrench
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posted 06-27-2007 09:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by bruce:
Just read a new review of Into That Silent Sea

Thanks, Bruce, for posting that interesting review.

leslie
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posted 06-28-2007 09:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for leslie   Click Here to Email leslie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am not a space exploration historian, I simply am drawn to these amazing achievements. My appetite for reading is voracious and I am not usually given to praise, but this book has captured well the atmosphere of what those times must have been like. The pioneering spirit of the personnel involved, the competitiveness, the stretched egos and, more than anything else, with the obvious benefit of hindsight and amazing achievements that have followed, the simplicity and rawness of those missions. The title is somewhat haunting and I find myself repeating it on occasion. It is so apt!

How so much drama could be crammed into fifteen-minute flights is aptly described, and done very well. I have done several network radio interviews relating to a space exhibition of mine and in each one have mentioned "Into That Silent Sea" when responding to the questions related to Apollo. Without Mercury and Gemini and all the original personnel, Apollo would never have happened! I continued with "It is impossible to describe the history in a few words, but here is a new book that does exactly that..."

Annoyingly, for any person with similar interests, the reader will think when reading "Into That Silent Sea," that this is a book they should have written. Why? The skill is in the simplicity of presentation. The facts have been well documented previously, but the way they knit together well with the wonderful stories and first person narrative make it easy and satisfying book to read. I offer congratulations, wish the book huge success and, I suspect, there will be another to follow in the not too distant future. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Dwayne Day
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posted 07-02-2007 11:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwayne Day   Click Here to Email Dwayne Day     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I saw it on sale in the San Diego Air & Space Museum store. Sadly, not in the JPL store (which doesn't sell a lot of books).

FFrench
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posted 07-02-2007 12:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That's correct - and as I work at that museum, I would have been happy to come downstairs and sign a copy for you if I'd have known you were there, and say hello. Would have been good to meet you.

FFrench
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posted 07-06-2007 02:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you, Leslie, for those very kind words. We especially appreciate you mentioning the book so much in radio interviews, that is most kind of you!

quote:
I suspect there will be another to follow in the not too distant future.
And you'd be right (also on Amazon UK).

Larry McGlynn
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posted 07-07-2007 10:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just finished "Into That Silent Sea" and I must say that I enjoyed it. Now maybe I am biased, because I provided Francis and Colin with a minor portion of some research that I did a while back, but I truly enjoyed the book.

Let me start out by saying that I have heard many of these stories first hand by several of the people interviewed in this book. I have tried to read the book with the unpracticed eye of a space history novice. The book turned out to be very interesting due to it's personal historical perspective. I have read many books about the dates and times of the major events in space flight, so this book has been an enjoyable alternative due to it's intimate knowledge and style.

The only criticism I have for Colin and Francis concerns some of the content and it's relationship to the rest of the book's material. While this book is about people and specifically says so in the introduction, I would make the suggestion to the publisher to add a subtitle to the book cover that briefly states the series is a societal review of space flight history from the personal perspective of some of the participants in the events. That might avoid some of the confusion I ran into while reading the "Two Wally's" chapter as well as resolve other such potential conflicts in future books of the series.

However, I did find the "Mercury 13" interviews and material excellent. The chapter provides compelling and sympathetic look at what happened to these women through the review of contempory documents as well as the eyes of one of the more prominent participants in the Lovelace exams. The relationship to the pioneering space flights, however tenuous, is handled by the author's use of the interview material to provide a counterpoint between two participants who unavoidably became involved in the greater social issue of gender as criteria for early astronaut selection. Also, the chapter did prove to be a good precursor to Valentina Tereshkova's story. As such, I regard my criticism as minor.

The Russian chapters were of particular interest, because they provided me with much new personal information from the cosmonauts. As someone who has primarily focused on the American side of the space race, I was fascinated to read of the personal struggles and triumphs of the early cosmonauts through their eyes.

I do think "Into That Silent Sea" accomplishes what it has set out to do. The book explains with a very comfortable style of writing, a very personal history of space travel. There are a lot of people, like me, out there gathering stories for future generations, but have never really put pen to paper (or in this modern age, finger to key). Therefore, I can greatly appreciate the fact that the authors have put together a good record of personal remembrances from the people who were there and I look forward to the next installment in the series.

------------------
Larry McGlynn
A Tribute to Apollo

FFrench
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posted 07-08-2007 12:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks, Larry, for those thoughts, which are much appreciated. It's always really interesting to hear thoughts such as this. I'm really glad you enjoyed it so much. As someone who has worked with the people in the book a lot, you're someone who would have instantly known if we'd got it wrong.

quote:
Originally posted by Larry McGlynn:
I would make the suggestion to the publisher to add a subtitle to the book cover that briefly states the series is a societal review of space flight history from the personal perspective of some of the participants in the events.

There is indeed such a subtitle: "Outward Odyssey: A People's History of Spaceflight" - which appears in bold at the top back of the book cover, and is used by listings such as Amazon as a subtitle. It's the name of the book series of which this book is one part.

mdmyer
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posted 07-11-2007 07:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mdmyer   Click Here to Email mdmyer     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
While I was looking around at the Canadian version of Amazon.com I noticed Into That Silent Sea had no reviews posted there. How about some of us posting our reviews of this book on that webpage? You can do that by going here.

It is a great book so lets share our opinions.

garymilgrom
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posted 07-11-2007 01:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Mike thanks for the heads up. I'm a Canadian citizen so it struck a chord with me, and I've posted my review. Good luck to Francis and Colin for the success of this and future books.

mdmyer
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posted 07-11-2007 05:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mdmyer   Click Here to Email mdmyer     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Something I did not think about till later was that I should have added a link to this thread to my review. If someone has not posted a review yet how about adding a link to this?

FFrench
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posted 07-12-2007 12:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks so much, Mike and Gary! It never ceases to amaze me what a generous and giving group the people here are - Colin and I really appreciate the support and help you are giving to get the word out about the book.

The book was written with not only the space-buff in mind, but also a general audience who would be interested in the human stories. So postings such as Amazon really help... and as most people tend to head for the US site to review, it seems, other English-language sites such as the Canadian site (amazon.ca) and the UK site (amazon.co.uk) tend to get less reviews - never mind the French, German, Japanese sites. I really appreciate your postings!

With a small university publisher, there is very little promotional effort possible compared to the big publishing businesses - and anything people can do to get the word out to the wider world (suggesting magazines and newspapers review it, recommending it to friends, etc.) is amazingly helpful. Thanks guys!!

To answer one question, I just looked up the Amazon review posting rules, and it specifically says "no URLs," so a link back to CollectSPACE wouldn't be allowed, sadly.

Without grassroots efforts like yours, no-one hears about books like these. Your efforts are MUCH appreciated!! Thank you!

ColinBurgess
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posted 07-17-2007 07:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ColinBurgess   Click Here to Email ColinBurgess     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Having just returned from a six-week vacation trip it was a true delight to read so many wonderful posts about "Into That Silent Sea" from fellow enthusiasts such as Bruce, Leslie and Larry. Thanks to all of you, and to all of those who have not only posted reviews on Amazon, but have praised the book/s in private correspondence and online messages. To date, every review at every Amazon site has been attached to a five-star rating, which is heartwarming to someone who grew up in the years of the Space Race with a passion that remains undiminished 45 years later.

The seeds of this book and "In the Shadow of the Moon" (and indeed the entire series) were probably planted with a non-fiction children's book I wrote many years ago called "Space: The New Frontier" in which I set out a pictorial history of spaceflight containing stories from the Soviet and American side of the story. My publisher told me that one day I should write a full adult book along those same lines. Tom Hanks' FTETTM gave me further thoughts on how to set out such a book. Soon after Francis and I had begun work on "Into That Silent Sea" the managing editor of the University of Nebraska Press asked for my thoughts on turning this book into a full series on the societal history of space exploration. I was appointed series editor, tasked with finding suitable authors for each of the (now) ten books in the series, and many of that number are regular correspondents on collectSPACE. Within a few weeks I hope to be able to announce a final list of books and authors, as a couple are still to be approved by the university and editorial boards and signed up. The authors have been given a fairly loose mandate in producing their books, but with one stated emphasis - that they are to tell the human story behind each facet of spaceflight, and not just those people who may have ridden the rockets. They are to interview the visionaries, the inventors, the designers, the builders, the controllers. In short, those people behind the higher-profile scenes who helped put us into space on this Outward Odyssey.

The next book in the series (due out early next year) is "To a Distant Day" by Chris Gainor, and this beautifully-constructed volume will fully explore the amazing history of rocketry and astronautics leading from the distant past of Chinese rockets right up to the flight of Gagarin. Chris (the author of the brilliant "Arrows to the Moon") has done a superb job in collating what will be a wonderful book.

Later next year "Homesteading Space" will be released. This exciting volume, mentioned earlier by Francis, has been authored by David Hitt, Owen Garriott and Joe Kerwin, and tells the remarkable story of the Skylab program. All eight of the surviving Skylab astronauts participated to some extent in the writing of this book, and it will feature a previously-private (and unknown to fellow crewmembers) diary that Alan Bean kept during his Skylab mission, which relates his feelings and observations as he actually experienced them.

Jay Gallentine's book, as also mentioned earlier, is destined to become the "Right Stuff" of unmanned space exploration and planetary probes. Those who have already previewed this manuscript are left in awe of Jay's incisive and dexterous writing style, which will leave other, drier accounts of the subject in its wake. Over several weeks, Jay carried out an extensive interview with James Van Allen, which sadly (in a broad sense) proved to be the very last interview given by the great man. JVA read and approved his story not long before he died. The series is indeed fortunate to have gifted authors like Jay relating the amazing, largely untold stories of such noble people and extraordinarily complex projects.

Books on Project Apollo, the shuttle, space stations and private space ventures will follow, and I can assure everyone that this will become a series to treasure. I can also assure you that I feel very proud to be involved in this wonderful venture, and privileged to have worked with Francis French on these first two books in the series.

MCroft04
Member

Posts: 1219
From: Smithfield, Me, USA
Registered: Mar 2005

posted 07-17-2007 09:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MCroft04   Click Here to Email MCroft04     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Colin, as a space enthusiast from a young age, I am most grateful to you and other authors for further documentation of the exploration of space; I just hope that our paths cross again to buy that beer that I promised and to get an autograph on a series of great books!!!!

Kevmac
Member

Posts: 186
From: College Station, TX
Registered: Apr 2003

posted 07-17-2007 11:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevmac   Click Here to Email Kevmac     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Francis, I'm heading out to San Diego the last few days of this week. Any chance I could hook up with you at the musuem? Please contact me at kevannm@earthlink.net.

FFrench
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Posts: 3093
From: San Diego
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 07-17-2007 11:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Sure - I will E-mail you. And if you are staying around as long as Saturday, Scott Carpenter, Tom Stafford and Gene Cernan will all be at the museum giving a free talk - a good time to visit!

FFrench
Member

Posts: 3093
From: San Diego
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 07-22-2007 08:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kevin, it was a great pleasure to meet you on Friday and give you a little tour of the museum (including the secret space stuff in the basement!). You picked a good day, as not only was the new Lunar Rover and Apollo spacesuit exhibit being installed, but Scott Carpenter was in town to do some media at the museum a day before his public appearance. Knowing you were not able to stay in town for the next day, I am glad you had the opportunity to meet behind the scenes.

It was also a pleasure, Kevin, to sign my very first copy of "In The Shadow of the Moon" for you, as well as the copy of "Into That Silent Sea" you brought with you - I hope you enjoy them both!

Carpenter's visit was a nice opportunity for me to talk again with him about the books, as he and daughter Kris Stoever had been of immense help in our research, fact-checking and proofreading.

Kevmac
Member

Posts: 186
From: College Station, TX
Registered: Apr 2003

posted 07-30-2007 10:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kevmac   Click Here to Email Kevmac     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Francis, I want to thank you publicly for your hospitality and generosity in taking time out of your very hectic day to give me a tour of your museum and introduce me to Scott Carpenter (see picture above). I've been reading "In the Shadow of the Moon" this past week and have almost completed it. I'm taking my time getting thru it, as the book is like a very fine wine that can't be hurried through. I need to take small sips of each chapter and savor the history and never-before-told personal stories. I've read almost every astronaut book that's come out over the last 35 years and this edition, along with my soon-to-be read "Into That Silent Sea" tell the manned space flight story like no books before. My thanks to you and Colin for putting these memories to paper and sharing them with the rest of us. Again, thank you for your time during my visit to San Diego.


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