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  The Soaring Achievements of John C. Houbolt

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Author Topic:   The Soaring Achievements of John C. Houbolt
Robert Pearlman

Posts: 42981
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 07-04-2009 09:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Soaring Achievements of John C. Houbolt
by Dr. Robert E. Sterling
With succinct text and striking graphic designs on almost every page, this book tells the exciting story of Apollo 11 and the role played by NASA engineer John C. Houbolt in landing Americans on the Moon and returning them safely to Earth. The book contains more than 40 carefully selected historic photos that capture one of mankind's greatest achievements. Although astronauts Armstrong and Aldrin have been rightfully applauded for their heroic efforts, Time magazine described John Houbolt as "Apollo's unsung hero." This book shines the spotlight of historic recognition on Houbolt and weaves his compelling story into the broader narrative of America's first manned Moon mission.
  • Publisher: CreateSpace (May 13, 2009)
  • Paperback: 40 pages
  • ISBN-10: 1442170247; ISBN-13: 978-1442170247


Posts: 1966
From: Atlanta, GA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 08-07-2009 11:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is an unusual book. Although small in size it reminds us of a great event - John Houbolt's persistence in promoting LOR as the fastest way for Apollo to reach the moon. While rendezvous is a common practice today, in the 1960s the idea of two spacecraft navigating and joining together a quarter million miles from home was unique enough for some to call it outlandish. As it turned out (as mentioned in the book) this is a man Wernher von Braun thanked personally as one of those responsible for the success of the Apollo moon landings.

So Mr. Houbolt made a huge contribution to the program but this book seems lacking in recognizing this. The book could have told a compelling story about the qualities of persistence and determination, instead it mentions this in passing while lightly touching on the highlights of Houbolt's life. The book is laid out and illustrated in a simple style, almost like a comic book, with large pictures supported by thought-balloon style captions. While it's nice to see anything about this great man's contribution and career, I think this 39 page book is a weak effort in comparison to what might have been written.


Posts: 642
From: Cinci, OH
Registered: Mar 2006

posted 08-07-2009 11:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for kr4mula   Click Here to Email kr4mula     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If you want to read something more detailed (I'm assuming, since I haven't seen the new book) on Houbolt, you can read online the NASA Monograph in Aerospace History #4, "Enchanted Rendezvous", subtitled "John C. Houbolt and the Genesis of the Lunar orbit Rendezvous Concept." Jim Hansen wrote it, so you know it's decent.

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