GeniusNew York Times Bestseller: This life story of the quirky physicist is “a thorough and masterful portrait of one of the great minds of the century” (The New York Review of Books). Raised in Depression-era Rockaway Beach, physicist Richard Feynman was irreverent, eccentric, and childishly enthusiastic—a new kind of scientist in a field that was in its infancy. His quick mastery of quantum mechanics earned him a place at Los Alamos working on the Manhattan Project under J. Robert Oppenheimer, where the giddy young man held his own among the nation’s greatest minds. There, Feynman turned theory into practice, culminating in the Trinity test, on July 16, 1945, when the Atomic Age was born. He was only twenty-seven. And he was just getting started. In this sweeping biography, James Gleick captures the forceful personality of a great man, integrating Feynman’s work and life in a way that is accessible to laymen and fascinating for the scientists who follow in his footsteps.
Moon ShotA revised edition of the New York Times bestselling classic: the epic story of the golden years of American space exploration, told by the men who rode the rockets
On October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik I, and the space race was born. Desperate to beat the Russians into space, NASA put together a crew of the nation’s most daring test pilots: the seven men who were to lead America to the moon. The first into space was Alan Shepard; the last was Deke Slayton, whose irregular heartbeat kept him grounded until 1975. They spent the 1960s at the forefront of NASA’s effort to conquer space, and Moon Shot is their inside account of what many call the twentieth century’s greatest feat—landing humans on another world. Collaborating with NBC’s veteran space reporter Jay Barbree, Shepard and Slayton narrate in gripping detail the story of America’s space exploration from the time of Shepard’s first flight until he and eleven others had walked on the moon.
Encounter with TiberAn Apollo 11 astronaut and the Nebula Award–nominated author of Directive 51 present a novel that “conveys the wonder and promise of space” (Publishers Weekly).
Born the year of the Moon landing, Chris Terence spends his life fighting to return humanity to that pinnacle. An engineering student with dreams of spaceflight, he finds upon graduation that the United States no longer has need for astronauts. Years of bureaucratic meddling have reduced the space program to a shell of itself, and it will take the greatest scientific find in history to send humanity skyward once more. After years battling budget hawks, Chris finally gets his chance to walk on the Moon. While there, he finds evidence of an ancient alien civilization, the Tiberians, who visited Earth’s satellite eight thousand years before. Understanding what happened to those long-forgotten travelers will define the lives of Chris and his son, as they fight against all odds to unlock the secrets of the universe.
“The collaboration of the first man to pilot a moon lander (Aldrin) with a major voice in contemporary science fiction (Barnes) has produced a fascinating chronicle of man’s first encounter with alien intelligence” (Booklist).
Challenger: An American TragedyOn January 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Seventy-three seconds after launch, the fiery breach of a solid motor joint caused a rupture of the propellant tanks, and a stunned nation watched as flames engulfed the craft, killing all seven crew members on board. It was Hugh Harris, “the voice of launch control,” whom audiences across the country heard counting down to lift-off on that fateful day.
With over fifty years of experience with NASA’s missions, Harris presents the story of the Challenger tragedy as only an insider can. With by-the-second accounts of the spacecraft’s launch and a comprehensive overview of the ensuing investigation, Harris gives readers a behind-the-scenes look at the devastating accident that grounded the shuttle fleet for over two years. This book tells the whole story of the Challenger’s tragic legacy.
ThirteenAn “exciting” minute-by-minute account of the Apollo 13 flight based on mission control transcripts from Houston (The New York Times).
On the evening of April 13, 1970, the three astronauts aboard Apollo 13 were just hours from the third lunar landing in history. But as they soared through space, two hundred thousand miles from earth, an explosion badly damaged their spacecraft. With compromised engines and failing life-support systems, the crew was in incomparably grave danger. Faced with below-freezing temperatures, a seriously ill crew member, and a dwindling water supply, a safe return seemed unlikely.
Thirteen is the shocking, miraculous, and entirely true story of how the astronauts and ground crew guided Apollo 13 to a safe landing on earth. Expanding on dispatches written for the New Yorker, Henry S. F. Cooper Jr. brings readers unparalleled detail on the moment-by-moment developments of one of NASA’s most dramatic missions.
ClusterAs Cluster opens, the alien envoy Pnotl of Sphere Knyfh seeks help from Sphere Sol in a shared galactic-level crisis: Galaxy Andromeda has discovered the secret of energy transfer and intends to use it to steal the basic energy of the Milky Way Galaxy. Knyfh offers the secret of aura transfer on the understanding that Sphere Sol will spread the technology to help create a galactic coalition to find and defeat agents of Andromeda. Sol's highest-Kirlian individual is Flint, a green-skinned native of Outworld, who has a Kirlian aura of two hundred, an eidetic memory (useful for memorizing the complex equations of Kirlian transfer that he will need to communicate to other spheres). He has extraordinary intelligence and is highly adaptable. His mission is complicated, however, by the fact that he is pursued everywhere by a very high Kirlian female Andromedan agent and, somehow, the Andromedans are able to detect and trace Kirlian transfers. Flint embarks upon several missions to bring transfer technology to neighboring spheres, inhabiting various alien forms. His efforts are successful despite attacks and sabotage by the Andromedan agent. Through the conflict, however, the mutual attraction of their two vastly superior auras begins to undermine their individual loyalty to their own Spheres. Flint and a group of other entities recover the information that will allow them to detect and trace transfers, and a member of the group is revealed as the Andromedan agent. One result is the catastrophic destruction of the local habitat. Flint and his nemesis are transferred into alien Mintakan bodies to survive. Choosing to leave things with parity between their two galaxies, Flint and the Andromedan mate and remain together until their auras fade (which happens rapidly, since their physical bodies have been destroyed).
Geodesica AscentThe year is 2438. Humanity has migrated to the stars in discrete waves, driven by evolving technologies and new ways of being human. The far-flung Arc Systems struggle under the yoke of their newest rulers—Exarchs from Sol, whose monopoly on faster-than-light communication gives them absolute control of a growing interstellar empire.
But humans weren’t the first to conquer the stars, and the discovery of an alien artifact promising transport between systems threatens to undermine the Exarchs’ power. Revolutionary leader Melilah Awad seeks an alliance to unlock Geodesica’s secrets with VOIDship pilot Palmer Eogan, a lover she lost to the Dark more than two centuries earlier. What they find could be more dangerous than anyone--human or more than human--could imagine….
Phases of GravityA New York Times–bestselling author’s moving novel about an astronaut returning to Earth, and the small steps and giant leaps love requires.
Richard Baedecker thinks his greatest challenge was walking on the moon, but then he meets a mysterious woman who shows him his past. Join Baedecker as he comes to grips with the son and wife he lost owing to his passion for space exploration, his forgotten childhood, and the loss he experienced during the deadly flight of the Challenger. The most difficult exploration of his life is not the cold, rocky crevices of the moon, but the warm interior of his heart. Brilliant and beautifully written, Phases of Gravity is a masterpiece about love and loss that transports readers far beyond the confines of space and time.
Phases of Gravity is a thoughtful, deeply involving novel from an author who has earned numerous honors, including the World Fantasy Award for Song of Kali and the Hugo Award for Hyperion.
Station in Space
At one time, outer space was seen as the last frontier, the final challenge to human ingenuity. But those days are gone, as the galaxy becomes the stomping ground for humans encountering strange new machinery and green-faced Martians. Depicted with stark realism and meticulous detail, this novel tells of the dangers, despair, and unbelievable pleasure that await the men and women who are to populate the first ever station in space.
Martian SummerA space enthusiast goes inside mission control with a motley crew of rocket scientists in this “fascinating journey of discovery peppered with humor” (Publishers Weekly).
The Phoenix Mars mission was the first man-made probe ever sent to the Martian arctic. Its purpose was to find out how climate change could turn a warm, wet planet (read: Earth) into a cold, barren desert (read: Mars). Along the way, Phoenix discovered a giant frozen ocean trapped beneath the north pole of Mars, exotic food for aliens, and liquid water, and laid the foundation for NASA’s current exploration of Mars using the Curiosity rover.
This is not science fiction. It’s fact. And for the luckiest fanboy in fandom, it was the best vacation ever. Andrew Kessler spent the summer of 2008 in NASA’s mission control with one hundred thirty of the world’s best planetary scientists and engineers as they carried out this ambitious operation. He came back with a story of human drama about modern-day pioneers battling NASA politics, temperamental robots, and the bizarre world of daily life in mission control.