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June 7, 2013 / Leslie

Review – Audiobook: Mission To Mars by Buzz Aldrin

Mission To Mars by Buzz AldrinMission To Mars:
My Vision for Space Exploration
by Buzz Aldrin
Narrated by John Pruden

Genre: Non-Fiction, Science
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Publish Date: May 7, 2013
Format: Audio, 4 hours | 49 minutes
Audio Listening Level: Easy
Rating: 4 of 5

Publisher’s Synopsis:

Legendary “space statesman” Buzz Aldrin speaks out as a vital advocate for the continuing quest to push the boundaries of the universe as we know it. As a pioneering astronaut who set foot on the moon during mankind’s first landing with Apollo 11 and an aerospace engineer who designed an orbital rendezvous technique critical to future planetary landings Aldrin has a vision, and in Mission to Mars he plots out the path he proposes, one that will take humans to Mars by 2035.

My Thoughts:

I have always been fascinated by the idea of space travel. I remember going to the theater to see 2001: A Space Odyssey way back in 1968 and thinking that maybe, just maybe, I’d be able to travel to a moonbase someday. After all, the US was only months away for the first manned moon mission.

Unfortunately the Apollo project was cancelled, the space program stalled, and we are now decades away from viable space travel. Leaving earth orbit on a rocket is not for the faint of heart. It’s dangerous and costly, and the majority of Americans are no longer risk-takers plus the political will for a government space program doesn’t exist. But for many the desire to travel into space still exists.

In Mission to Mars, Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin lays out his plan for a mission to Mars, and explains why Mars and not the moon, is the target to shoot for. There is no need to get into a space race to return to the moon. A visit to the moon should be a collaborative effort with other nations. He proposes a Unified Space Vision, a blueprint designed to maintain U.S. leadership in space exploration and human spaceflight.

“The USV brings in concert exploration, science, development, commerce and security elements.”

In addition to Mars, Aldrin covers an assortment of other space topics. He reminisces about the Apollo Project, his walk on the moon, discusses the space shuttle and how it sent the space program in the wrong direction (it combined hauling cargo with exploration), the inefficiencies of NASA, the need for reusable launch vehicles, and the potential for space tourism to name a few.

The audio production was nicely paced easy to listen to. John Pruden narrated the book in a clear, steady voice with a hint of excitement at some of the plans and proposals. At times it had the feel of a Discovery Channel or Nova presentation, but for non-fiction lovers, that’s a good thing!

There is no need to have a technical background to enjoy this book, just an interest in space travel and a few hours to spend with this highly readable/listenable volume.

Source: Review copy provided by Blackstone Audio and Audiobook Jukebox
© 2013 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.



Leave a Comment
  1. BermudaOnion / Jun 7 2013 2:34 pm

    I bet this is interesting. I think Aldrin is trying to become the Ambassador to Space and we really need someone in that position!


  2. Suko / Jun 7 2013 3:26 pm

    This sounds fascinating, Leslie! Wonderful review, as always.


  3. Mordanicus / Jun 8 2013 1:29 am

    Aldrin knows what he is talking about.


  4. Daniel S. Davis / Jun 9 2013 1:24 pm

    Read it in a day. Buzz Aldrin is still, at this age, a wonderful and fresh voice in the advocacy of space exploration. Also dude has been to the moon, THE MOON!


  5. stacybuckeye / Jun 9 2013 9:51 pm

    Jason and I just watched The Right Stuff so I feel like I had a pseudo-astronaut lesson 😉 When I saw 2001 a few years ago I detested it with every fiber of my being. Of course I couldn’t tell you why because I’ve blocked most of it out of my memory.


    • Leslie / Jun 11 2013 2:48 pm

      I read the books (there are 3 or 4 Space Odyssey books) about 10 years ago and liked them. They were better than the movie which I remember to be rather cerebral and vague. At least with the books I knew what was going on. In the movie, once we left the moonbase it was one weird trip.



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