Foreword Reviews 2018 INDIE Award Winner! On the eve of the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing comes a novel in which a Jewish astronaut must reassess his moral compass when forced to confront NASA’s early collaboration with Nazis and the role it may have played in his father’s death.
Jonathan Stein thinks only a bad heart can stop him from reaching the moon. But when he discovers his father may have been murdered to protect an appalling NASA secret, he must decide whether his moral compass still points towards the stars. Days before the Apollo 18 launch in 1974, Jonathan’s father, an Israeli astronaut at NASA, died of an apparent heart attack. A year before his own launch, in 2005, Jonathan,
a typically devout skeptic, becomes captivated by the tale of a mysterious online conspiracy theorist who claims that his father had been killed. Unable to keep long-buried suspicions from resurfacing, he reopens the case,
digging into a past that becomes stranger and more compelling the deeper he goes.
To get to the truth he must confront Dale Lunden, his father’s best friend and the last man on the moon, and his
elusive childhood hero Neil Armstrong. When his relentless pursuit of the truth leads to disturbing revelations
about the Nazis who worked for NASA, the hardest questions to answer are the ones he must ask
The Astronaut’s Son was inspired by the true story of Nazi scientists and engineers at NASA.
Seigel's solid debut provides an intriguing and plausible variant on moon landing conspiracy theories. In 2004, Jonathan Stein announces that his private company, Apollo Aeronautics, aims to launch a manned mission to the moon led by Jonathan himself. Decades earlier, Jonathan's Israeli astronaut father, Avi, was part of the flight crew for NASA's last moon expedition, but he died from a heart attack before launch. Shortly after Jonathan's announcement, his wife finds an online posting by someone identified only as Cassandra, who alleges that Avi was actually the victim of a murder plot. The conspiracy was initiated by Nazi scientists working on the U.S. space program who could not stomach a Jew being on one of the rockets they had developed. Though Jonathan initially believes that Cassandra is trying to turn Avi into a "pseudo-martyr for a band of crackpots," his digging leads him in a different direction. Equally strong on plotting and characterization, Seigel does better than many other thriller writers in making his lead's pain and uncertainty about the past palpable.