I love reading. I think it is an amazing way to learn more about the world (and beyond) and think in new ways. So I thought that I would talk about some of the astronomy books I have been reading. In no particular order here we go…
Light of the Stars: Alien Worlds and the Fate of the Earth by Adam Frank
This is a ‘coming of age’ book for humanity. It talks about how we need to realize that we are most likely not the only intelligent civilization in the history of the universe and what it means to be living on the Earth and realize this. Tackling the history and future of alien science is a very good read for anyone with an interest in planetary science and astrobiology.
Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson
This book covers all the important physics of astronomy and does so in an entertaining and short way. Lots of jokes and analogies in between the science this is an amazing book for learning about how the universe works.
100 Things to See in the Night Sky by Dean Regas
This book is an amazing introduction to what you can see in the northern sky. There is also the book 100 Things to See in the Southern Night Sky for everyone down under but my library did not own that version however it is on my to read list. The idea of the book is to introduce people to the sky with the naked eye or a small telescope/binoculars and it does so in a way that is easy to follow. It is broken up into circumpolar and seasons with the degree of difficulty of finding shown as well. I would widely recommend this book to anyone wanting to lookup more.
Mars Rover Curiosity: An Inside Account from Curiosity’s Chief Engineer by Rob Manning
I really enjoyed a look into what it is like to be at the head of an ambitious NASA mission. Telling the story of the highs and lows of the Curiosity mission and how difficult it is to get to mars this is an interesting read for anyone interested in engineering.
Apollo 8: The Thrilling Story of the First Mission to the Moon by Jeffrey Kluger
With 2018 being 50 years since the Apollo 8 mission to the moon this is a spectacular book. Going into the lives of the astronauts, their families, NASA, and the political environment at the time this is an incredibly engaging book I could not stop reading. Recommend to everyone interested in astronauts and space flight.
The Future of Humanity: Terraforming Mars, Interstellar Travel, Immortality, and Our Destiny Beyond Earth by Michio Kaku
I saw Michio Kaku talk in Christchurch when he was in NZ in 2018 and after that, I have been reading his books. This one talks about how physics is going to influence our future with living and traveling space being one of the main talking points. This book makes you excited about what is to come.
Parallel Worlds: A Journey Through Creation, Higher Dimensions, and the Future of the Cosmos by Michio Kaku
Another Michio Kaku book, this time about cosmology and string theory. Diving into the history of cosmology, his personal experience with string theory and how we view the cosmos this is a very engaging book about the biggest of topics.
Artemis by Andy Weir
This is the only fiction book on this list and that’s because it is a very good one. A story about a smuggler living in the first city on the Moon. Amazing plot with the author taking the time to get the scientific details right.
I hope this inspires you to pick up a book this weekend, check out your library or put on an audiobook. If you would like to follow what I am reading (not just astronomy books) check out my Good Reads page (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/75557397-holly-mcclelland). Learning is a lifelong journey and reading is a good place to start.