This week marks the 50th Anniversary of the Moon landing, and to celebrate, we’ve gathered together a list of the best ‘Moon’ related books, for both adults and children.
1. The Moon: A History for the Future
by Oliver Morton
As heard on Radio 4 ‘Book of the Week’, Oliver Morton explores the history and future of humankind’s relationship with the Moon. Advanced technologies, new ambitions and old dreams mean that men, women and robots now seem certain to return to the Moon. What will they learn there about the universe, the Earth-and themselves? And, this time, will they stay?
2. The Moon : A Celebration of our Celestial Neighbour by The Royal Observatory, Greenwich
Published to coincide with Royal Museums Greenwich’s exhibition The Moon, this book illuminates how art and science meet in our profound connection with the Moon. It features authors from a variety of disciplines, including cultural historians, curators, a scientist, a poet and a space law expert among others.
3. First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong by James R Hansen
The only authorized glimpse into the life of America’s most famous astronaut, Neil Armstrong. Based on over fifty hours of interviews with the Armstrong, who also gave Hansen exclusive access to private documents and family sources. Hansen addresses the complex legacy of the First Man, as an astronaut and as an individual.
4. Carrying the Fire: An Astronaut’s Journeys: 50th Anniversary Edition by Michael Collins
In July 1969, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins piloted the Apollo 11 spacecraft to the moon. Updated with a new preface to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon-landing, memoir, Michael Collins’ memoir conveys, the drama, beauty, and humour of that adventure. He also traces his development from his first flight experiences in the air force, through his days as a test pilot, to his involvement in Project Gemini and his first spaceflight on Gemini 10.
This memoir of a veteran NASA flight director tells stories from the early days of the Mercury program through Apollo 11 (the moon landing) and Apollo 13, for both of which Kranz was flight director. Gene Kranz was present at the creation of America’s manned space program and was a key player in it for three decades. He reveals behind-the-scenes details to demonstrate the leadership, discipline, trust, and teamwork that made the space program a success.
6. Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo 11 by Brian Floca
A beautifully illustrated book for children and for readers of all ages, showing the flight of Apollo 11. Astronauts clicking themselves into gloves and helmets, strapping themselves into sideways seats, the roar of rockets, and the silence of the Moon.
Moonshots presents stunning photos of space and Earth from NASA’s archives – taken by Gemini, Apollo, Space Shuttle, and ISS astronauts using high resolution Hasselblad cameras.
The large-format hardcover book is presented in a heavy slipcase with die-cuts to represent the phases of the moon.
NASA Mission AS-506 Apollo 11 Owners’ Workshop Manual is the story of the Apollo 11 mission and the ‘space hardware’ that made it all possible. This manual looks at the evolution and design of the Saturn V rocket, the Command and Service Modules, and the Lunar Module. It describes the space suits worn by the crew and their special life support and communications systems. We learn about how the Apollo 11 mission was flown – from launch procedures to ‘flying’ the Saturn V and the ‘LEM’, and from moon walking to the earth re-entry procedure. This new edition of the book celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
9. A Fire on the Moon by Norman Mailer
Mailer’s account, written as it was happening, of the first attempt to land men on the moon ‘Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.’ A gripping narrative and a brilliant depiction of the now-forgotten technical issues and uncertainties around the mission.
10. Goodnight Spaceman by Michelle Robinson and Nick East
Two space-mad little boys get ready for bed and say goodnight to their toy rockets, launch pads and planet mobiles, before being whisked away into space on an incredible adventure. Inspired by ESA astronaut Tim Peake and his sons, the book features an introduction from Tim – and the audio book is read by Tim Peake himself.
Do let us know if you have any favourite ‘moon’ related books at home!