Already a renowned chronicler of the epic events of world history, James A. Michener tackles the most ambitious subject of his career: space, the last great frontier. This astounding novel brings to life the dreams and daring of countless men and women - people like Stanley Mott, the engineer whose irrepressible drive for knowledge places him at the center of the American exploration effort; Norman Grant, the war hero and US senator who takes his personal battle not only to a nation but to the heavens; Dieter Kolff, a German rocket scientist who once worked for the Nazis; Randy Claggett, the astronaut who meets his destiny on a mission to the far side of the moon; and Cynthia Rhee, the reporter whose determined crusade brings their story to a breathless world.
©1982 James A. Michener (P)2015 Random House Audio
"A master storyteller.... Michener, by any standards, is a phenomenon. Space is one of his best books." (The Wall Street Journal)
"A novel of very high adventure...a sympathetic, historically sound treatment of an important human endeavor that someday could be the stuff of myth, told here with gripping effect." (The New York Times Book Review)
"Space is everything that Michener fans have come to expect. Without question, the space program's dramatic dimensions provide the stuff of great fiction." (BusinessWeek)
Typical Michener, starts at the beginning of time, goes on until present day. Well researched, technically correct in depth. Solid storytelling with a grand sweep.
Getting behind the scenes with his fictitious (but representative) astronauts. Also, the very strong thread of NASA's preoccupation with public relations and creating a narrative that the U.S. population will swallow, ostensibly to keep the public funds flowing. Also, the fraudulent preacher/intellectual was a great character.
Anyone. The narration was astoundingly slow and ponderous with noticeable pauses after almost every sentence. I nearly returned the book when out of desperation I put my iPOD on 2x playback speed, which in fact sped things up to about a normal cadence.
If you like Michener, and you can stand the remarkably slow and laborious narration, go ahead any get it.
I had already read SPACE years ago and enjoyed the book. I am glad that It is finally out on audiobook. The narration by Larry McKeever is a little slow and robotic but at least it is understandable. One glaring mistake by the narrator is that he repeatedly calls the mission that first landed man on the moon "Apollo Two" instead of "Apollo Eleven". Perhaps the Roman numerals used in the text confused him? This should be corrected.
The recording is old and is "read" as opposed to "performed" like current audio books. This takes some getting used to, it's jarring at first, however if you stick with the book for a couple of hours you get used to it and can enjoy the story.
Worst performance ever. Story was good but a bit strange, like if the space program was more than it really was. I was expecting historical fiction but this was a bit more, not bad but different. My first Michener novel maybe I should have known better?
Yes, in that the story is one of the best. But the narration was so poor that it spoiled the story. Very disappointed.
Any other narrator could probably have done a better job. Especially someone who could perform accents and differentiate voices.
So sad that one of the best books I've ever read is spoiled by the poor narration and sadder yet to find that McKeever is narrating all Michener's books. At times I wasn't even sure it was a human speaking. Still not convinced it was as there was very little emotion which was unfortunate considering the breadth of the story.
I know it's a big job, but I hope Audible redoes the rest of Michener's books. I want to hear them but won't buy them if McKeever is the narrator.
For the first couple of minutes, I thought, "Well, voice synthesis has gotten pretty good, but it's not there yet." Then I finally realized that the robotic, monotonous voice was actually a person.
Once past that, the story starts to unfold, and we get to know these amazing, made-up characters who interact with LBJ, Wernher von Braun, and Deke Slayton, culminating with a bold plan to explore the far side of the Moon. Educational, entertaining, and surprisingly timely: The anti-science movement Michener described in 1982 has become mainstream in American politics by 2015.
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