Journeys to the Dark Side of the Moon

Book - 2017
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On August 21st, over one hundred million people will gather across the USA to witness the most-watched total solar eclipse in history. Eclipse: Journeys to the Dark Side of the Moon, by popular science author Frank Close, describes the spellbinding allure of this beautiful natural phenomenon. The book explains why eclipses happen, reveals their role in history, literature and myth, and introduces us to eclipse chasers, who travel with ecstatic fervor to some of the most inaccessible places on the globe. The book also includes the author's quest to solve a 3000-year-old mystery: how did the moon move backward during a total solar eclipse, as claimed in the Book of Joshua? Eclipse is also the story of how a teacher inspired the author, aged eight, to pursue a career in science and a love affair with eclipses that has taken him to a war zone in the Western Sahara, the South Pacific, and the African bush. The tale comes full circle with another eight-year old boy - the author's grandson - at the 2017 great American eclipse. Readers of all ages will be drawn to this inspirational chronicle of the mesmerizing experience of total solar eclipse.
Publisher: New York, NY : Oxford University Press, 2017
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780198795490
Branch Call Number: 523.78 C6242E 2017
Characteristics: xii, 219 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color), maps (some color) ; 21 cm


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Nonfiction. Adult.

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Sep 13, 2017

Don't underestimate the value of this eclipse book, among the many published in the past 2 years-- it is both endearing and informative. Others have written books with too much detail on high end optics for eclipse photography, or mix of science and a cultural history of eclipses (by a non-historian, always risky reading).
Frank Close's book will have you primed for the next total eclipse, and perhaps whet your desire to travel outside the US to witness it!

Note: There are two typos in the section describing the Saros cycle. They are not important, but worth correcting on your own, if you can spot them!
(Check an earlier review on Amazon's website that grouses about them. In my opinion, finding and correcting errors is a welcome exercise in keeping up with the author's intended message, both verbal and numerical, and worthwhile in affirming your own technical-mathematical expertise!)


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