Out of Orbit

Out of Orbit : The Incredible True Story of Three Astronauts Who Were Hundreds of Miles Above Earth When They Lost Their Ride Home

3.85 (506 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Formerly Titled TOO FAR FROM HOME On February 1, 2003, the nation was stunned to watch the shuttle Columbia disintegrate into a blue-green sky. Despite the numerous new reports surrounding the tragedy, the public remained largely unaware that three men, U.S. astronauts Donald Pettit and Kenneth Bowersox, and Russian flight engineer Nikolai Budarin, remained orbiting Earth. With the launch program suspended indefinitely, these astronauts, who were already near the end of a fourteen-week mission, had suddenly lost their ride home. Out of Orbit is the harrowing behind-the-scenes chronicle of the efforts of beleagured Mission Controls in Houston and Moscow, who worked frantically against the clock to bring their men safely back to Earth, ultimately settling on a plan that felt, at best, like a long shot. Given that no shuttle could come for them, the astronauts' only hope for a return flight became a Russian-built Soyuz TMA-1 capsule latched to the side of the space station--a piece of equipment roughly the equivalent of a "padded box attached to a parachute," with a troubled history (in 1971 a malfunction in the Soyuz 11 capsule left three Russian astronauts dead) and dated technology. Gripping and fast-paced, Out of Orbit is an adventure in outer space that will keep you on the edge of your seat. In a day and age when space travel is poised to become available to the masses, Out of Orbit vividly captures both its hazardous realities and soaring majesty.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 288 pages
  • 130 x 202 x 18mm | 222.26g
  • Random House Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • Frontispiece; Illustrations, black and white
  • 0767919912
  • 9780767919913
  • 2,333,751

Review quote

"Combines gripping narrative and strongly defined characters . . . engrossing."
--Publishers Weekly

"Up close and personal . . . Jones, who obtained the cooperation of Bowersox and his crewmates, captures their feelings of separation from Earth and delivers space travel's ever-present risk in a kinetic rendering of their harrowing return home."
--Booklist
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About Dr Chris Jones

CHRIS JONES joined Esquire as a contributing editor and sports columnist, and became a Writer at Large when he won the 2005 National Magazine Award for Feature Writing for the story that became the basis for this book. Previously he was a sportswriter at the National Post, where he won an award as Canada's outstanding young journalist. His work has also appeared in The Best American Magazine Writing and The Best American Sports Writing anthologies. He lives in Ottawa, Canada.
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Rating details

506 ratings
3.85 out of 5 stars
5 28% (143)
4 40% (201)
3 24% (121)
2 6% (30)
1 2% (11)
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