How We Got to the Moon: The People, Technology, and Daring Feats of Science Behind Humanity's Greatest Adventure
How We Got to the Moon: The People, Technology, and Daring Feats of Science Behind Humanity's Greatest Adventure
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Annotation: The Moon landing is one of the most ambitious, thrilling, and dangerous ventures in human history. This exquisitely researched and illustrated book tells the stories of the 400,000 unsung heroes--the engineers, mathematicians, seamstresses, welders, and factory workers--and their innovations and life-changing technological leaps forward that allowed NASA to achieve this unparalleled accomplishment.
Genre: [Engineering]
Catalog Number: #289649
Format: Perma-Bound from Publisher's Hardcover
Common Core/STEAM: STEAM STEAM
Publisher: Random House
Copyright Date: 2020
Edition Date: 2020
Pages: 256 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-525-64741-4 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-9756-2
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-525-64741-6 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-9756-6
Dewey: 629.45
LCCN: 2019040738
Dimensions: 29 cm.
Language: English
Reviews:
Horn Book
In seven parts arranged chronologically, Rocco delivers a strikingly beautiful and highly informative account of the United States's audacious effort to send human beings to the moon. Tackling both historical and scientific concepts, the book examines everything from the space race to the mechanics of an F-1 rocket engine, with equal clarity. A plethora of full-color pencil, watercolor, and digital illustrations supports the conversational (and mostly present-tense) text. Frequent side panels feature biographical information about historical figures (often emphasizing the contributions of women, people of color, and production workers) as well as instructions for straightforward experiments for readers to try. Through skillful scaffolding, scientific concepts build in complexity throughout the book (e.g., Newton's Laws of Motion lead to Draper's Inertial Guidance System). Many formidable engineering challenges are presented through a clearly defined problem/solution format. From delicate portraits to intricate schematics to fiery liftoffs, Rocco creates a strong visual continuity throughout. The final chapter is a thrilling minute-by-minute account of the Apollo 11 mission, greatly enhanced by the previous information. A thoughtful epilogue praises the collaborative spirit of the Apollo missions and challenges readers with the following: "What new grand idea will bring together hundreds of thousands of individuals to achieve a common goal?" Extensive back matter includes a fact sheet on piloted Apollo missions, research/art notes, sources, further reading, commonly used acronyms, a map of Apollo lunar landings, and an index. Patrick Gall
Kirkus Reviews
A dramatic, meticulous record of the U.S. space program’s greatest achievement (so far).Systematically describing major components of the Saturn V and Apollo capsules, each onboard instrument, and the central NASA support facilities, Rocco orchestrates a grand overview that mingles analyses of daunting challenges and technical problems with appreciative nods to some of the 400,000 scientists and industrial workers who faced and solved them. Tucking in explanations of orbital physics and other background along the way from Sputnik to Apollo 11 (the other Apollo missions are summarized at the end), he highlights both techno-triumphs, from humongous rockets to the icky but ingenious in-flight Fecal Collection System, as well as the crucial but unsung labors of capsule designer Max Faget and dozens of others. Wary of turning the heavily illustrated pages into busy thickets of extraneous detail, the Caldecott honoree mixes his own cleanly drawn conceptualizations and cutaway views with repainted (mostly color) versions of period photographs, documents, portraits, and renowned shots like Earthrise. With a main narrative composed in the present tense, the result gives the insights, events, disasters, and near disasters of over a half-century ago not only visual unity, but an immediacy that will sweep readers along—and serve as a constant reminder that the participants, from well-known names like Katherine Johnson to geologist Farouk El-Baz and seamstress Ellie Foraker, weren’t all White men or remote historical figures.A soaring tribute. (author’s notes, sources, further reading, acronyms, index, map) (Nonfiction. 10-14)
Publishers Weekly
This expansive illustrated history of the Apollo space program delves ambitiously into the collective efforts and engineering feats required to send the first astronauts to the moon. In David Macaulay-esque style, pages brim with labeled diagrams, close-ups, and cutaways showcasing myriad technologies, including the inner workings of a rocket engine and the intricacies of spacesuit design. The book-s seven sections profile many lesser-known scientists,
School Library Journal
Gr 5 Up-This illustrated nonfiction book depicts each step of the scientific and engineering journey that facilitated the moon landing. The history of the Apollo program takes a back seat to the explanations of various rocket science concepts. This is often presented in a problem-and-solution format, which adds a narrative aspect to the otherwise technical texts. The hand-drawn illustrations move from portraits to technical drawings with remarkable ease. Every page provides graphic features, including illustrations or callout boxes. Many graphics-heavy nonfiction books can be overwhelming, but this work's aesthetic is classic and coordinated. The stories of the people and their process are given as much weight as the many diagrams and engineering marvels. Several of the collage illustrations and individual profiles show the people of color and women who helped with the NASA program while acknowledging the overall lack of diversity and problems within both the time period and institution. There are a lot of books about the Apollo program, but this one offers many unique elements that make it a good addition to a collection. VERDICT A gorgeously illustrated nonfiction book about the Apollo program and the space race that does its best to highlight diversity and the human story but focuses primarily on engineering. An engaging second-level purchase for medium and larger libraries. Elizabeth Nicolai, Anchorage P.L., AK
Starred Review for Kirkus Reviews
A dramatic, meticulous record of the U.S. space program’s greatest achievement (so far).Systematically describing major components of the Saturn V and Apollo capsules, each onboard instrument, and the central NASA support facilities, Rocco orchestrates a grand overview that mingles analyses of daunting challenges and technical problems with appreciative nods to some of the 400,000 scientists and industrial workers who faced and solved them. Tucking in explanations of orbital physics and other background along the way from Sputnik to Apollo 11 (the other Apollo missions are summarized at the end), he highlights both techno-triumphs, from humongous rockets to the icky but ingenious in-flight Fecal Collection System, as well as the crucial but unsung labors of capsule designer Max Faget and dozens of others. Wary of turning the heavily illustrated pages into busy thickets of extraneous detail, the Caldecott honoree mixes his own cleanly drawn conceptualizations and cutaway views with repainted (mostly color) versions of period photographs, documents, portraits, and renowned shots like Earthrise. With a main narrative composed in the present tense, the result gives the insights, events, disasters, and near disasters of over a half-century ago not only visual unity, but an immediacy that will sweep readers along—and serve as a constant reminder that the participants, from well-known names like Katherine Johnson to geologist Farouk El-Baz and seamstress Ellie Foraker, weren’t all White men or remote historical figures.A soaring tribute. (author’s notes, sources, further reading, acronyms, index, map) (Nonfiction. 10-14)
Starred Review ALA Booklist
*Starred Review* Books about the moon landing abound, but there's nothing as masterful as this gorgeously and heavily illustrated account by Caldecott Honor-winner Rocco. Beginning with background knowledge on the Space Race and NASA's mission to send a man to the moon, Rocco draws readers in with present-tense narration and information chunked into digestible parts, allowing better accessibility and natural stopping places to absorb the detailed descriptions. While the next chapters focus on the function and design of each section of the Saturn V rocket, they also spotlight potential problems and solutions. Visuals, infographics, and a few interspersed experiments help explain the science and engineering at work. Support is also needed on the ground, and another chapter relates the meticulous construction of such areas as the launch complex, as well as astronaut training. The final chapter, and the pièce de résistance, takes readers from launch day to the moon landing to Apollo 11's return to Earth, with dramatic, full-page illustrations and dialogue from the astronauts and Mission Control. Throughout the chapters, Rocco recognizes some of the 400,000-plus individuals it took to put 3 men on the moon. Acknowledging the predominance of white men at the time, he also profiles numerous ground-breaking women, like African American human computer Katherine Johnson. A triumphant undertaking that places readers in the historic moment.
Bibliography Index/Note: Includes bibliographical references (pages 247-249) and index.
Word Count: 47,031
Reading Level: 8.3
Interest Level: 5-9
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 8.3 / points: 9.0 / quiz: 510120 / grade: Middle Grades+
Lexile: 1170L

LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD • YALSA EXCELLENCE IN NONFICTION FINALIST • A ROBERT F. SIBERT HONOR BOOK

This beautifully illustrated, oversized guide to the people and technology of the moon landing by award-winning author/illustrator John Rocco (illustrator of the Percy Jackson series) is a must-have for space fans, classrooms, and tech geeks.


Everyone knows of Neil Armstrong's famous first steps on the moon. But what did it really take to get us there?

The Moon landing is one of the most ambitious, thrilling, and dangerous ventures in human history. This exquisitely researched and illustrated book tells the stories of the 400,000 unsung heroes--the engineers, mathematicians, seamstresses, welders, and factory workers--and their innovations and life-changing technological leaps forward that allowed NASA to achieve this unparalleled accomplishment.

From the shocking launch of the Russian satellite Sputnik to the triumphant splashdown of Apollo 11, Caldecott Honor winner John Rocco answers every possible question about this world-altering mission. Each challenging step in the space race is revealed, examined, and displayed through stunning diagrams, experiments, moments of crisis, and unforgettable human stories.

Explorers of all ages will want to pore over every page in this comprehensive chronicle detailing the grandest human adventure of all time!


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