NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Have you ever wondered what it would be like to find yourself strapped to a giant rocket that’s about to go from zero to 17,500 miles per hour?
Or to look back on Earth from outer space and see the surprisingly precise line between day and night? Or to stand in front of the Hubble Space Telescope, wondering if the emergency repair you’re about to make will inadvertently ruin humankind’s chance to unlock the universe’s secrets? Mike Massimino has been there, and in Spaceman he puts you inside the suit, with all the zip and buoyancy of life in microgravity.
Massimino’s childhood space dreams were born the day Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. Growing up in a working-class Long Island family, he catapulted himself to Columbia and then MIT, only to flunk his first doctoral exam and be rejected three times by NASA before making it through the final round of astronaut selection.
Taking us through the surreal wonder and beauty of his first spacewalk, the tragedy of losing friends in the Columbia shuttle accident, and the development of his enduring love for the Hubble Telescope—which he and his fellow astronauts were tasked with saving on his final mission—Massimino has written an ode to never giving up and the power of teamwork to make anything possible.
Spaceman invites us into a rare, wonderful world where science meets the most thrilling adventure, revealing just what having “the right stuff” really means.
Readers will be delighted and moved by retired astronaut Massimino's almost childlike wonder and enthusiasm, coupled with his humility, as he recounts the magnificence of space, the camaraderie of NASA in good times and bad, and a genuine gratitude for his good fortune. Inspired as a child by Neil Armstrong and the crew of the Apollo 11, Massimino was determined to one day join their ranks. That dream dimmed as he got older, but just as he was preparing for a career in the corporate world he saw the movie The Right Stuff, which reignited his fire and set him on a path that would finally lead him into orbit. Though the astronaut tests and training were some of the most challenging experiences of Massimino's life (which he dutifully recounts, warts and all), he made it, joining his fellow astronauts on two flights into space, including a nail-biting effort to repair a power supply panel on the Hubble Telescope. He also recounts what it was like to be at NASA during the 2003 Columbia shuttle tragedy. What could have been a rote, stoic memoir recounting dates and stats proves to be anything but. This is an engaging and uplifting memoir that's sure to give readers a deeper appreciation for the U.S. space program and inspire some future astronauts.
A terrific read and great human story
This book can be summed up in one word...
If you want a well written, entertaining, and inspiring book to read, then this is the book for you!
Could Not Stop Reading
I'm a 52 year old housewife, the furthest person you would think of to devour this book like I did!
Mr. Massimino; not only did you represent our country as an astronaut above and beyond the call of one, but as a person as well. I enjoyed the way you brought us lay persons into your world and into the world of NASA in a way we could have never experienced.
When I got to the part about your television appearance on that popular show (won't spoil it for others), I told my husband - and he said "oh, yeah - that was Mass!" - like duh, I should've known that already.
Thank you for writing this. Thank you for sharing what you experienced when you experienced what you experienced with those of us who didn't experience what you were so blessed to have experienced.
Alice Baker 🙋🏻☄️🌎🌔☀️⭐️🚀🛰🚅🌌🌠🌈🔧🔩🇺🇸