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Publisher's Summary

In Carrying the Fire, Michael Collins conveys, in a very personal way, the drama, beauty, and humor of the adventure of reaching the moon. He also traces his development from his first flight experiences in the air force, through his days as a test pilot, to his Apollo 11 spacewalk, presenting an evocative description of the joys of flight as well as a new perspective on time, light, and movement from someone who has seen the fragile Earth from the other side of the moon.

©1974 Michael Collins; foreword copyright 1974 by Charles A. Lindbergh; Preface to the 2009 edition copyright 2009 by Michael Collins (P)2017 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Collins tells what his space journeys meant to him as a human being [and] discusses the role of man amid the multitudinous mechanical marvels.... Profoundly affecting." ( The New Yorker)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Not a boring moment

I was a little skeptical about the narrator but decided to risk it because of the content. The narrator grew on me though and I enjoyed the performance. And Michael Collins is a fun, down to earth author. It was nice getting to know him through this book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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One of the Best Astro books

I have probably read thirty astronaut bios/autobios. Carrying the Fire may be the best ever written. Audible 20 Review Sweepstakes Entry

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • John
  • Chamblee, GA, United States
  • 09-16-17

Great Book for Apollo Fans

Michael Collins is not only a great pilot and astronaut, he is a great writer. His autobiography of his life through his Gemini and Apollo flights (and shortly thereafter) is informative, frank, and often pretty funny. It is really great to hear what happened from the "seat of the pants" point of view.

His experience on Apollo was pretty unique, because he was left alone in orbit while Armstrong and Aldrin descended to the moon and explored it for the first time. Collins' anxiety about his colleagues is palpable, even when written after the accomplishment. From the perspective of many years, I think many of us take the Apollo achievements for granted. Collins makes clear just how uncertain success was.

I also enjoyed his description of his decision to leave NASA. He is clearly a very talented guy who could succeed at any number of occupations (which, in the end, he did).

Great book.

The narration is good, but not great.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • JURANDYR
  • Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • 09-07-17

Such a Beautiful Book by a Beautiful Human Being

This book is a great source of information and delightful trivia about the first Moon manned exploration mission, it's preparation, and the life of one of the worldly renowned trio that accomplished it, its author, Apollo 11's Columbia Command Module Pilot, Astronaut Michael Collins.

I've already read/listened to several books on the United States' Space Program, all very good reads indeed, and I find it very hard to rate them in order of preference, but I must say that Mile Collins has a great talent as a writer, and Carrying the Fire truly is a masterpiece of this genre and subject.

I loved listening to it, from start to end.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Bravo!

By far the best astronauts account of what it was like. I've read dozens of astronauts biography, but Mike Collins was outstanding.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Easily one of the best Apollo era books I've read.

The detail put into this book is wonderful. I wad really able to transport myself mentally into the book and feel like a part of it. The writing is very nice and the narration is excellent.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Thomas
  • Shih-Chyr City, Taiwan
  • 08-10-17

One of the best astronaut memoirs

Probably my favorite history from NASA's astronaut class, beginning with Air Force, through test pilot training, astronaut acceptance, Gemini 10, how he was removed from Apollo 8, and moved to Apollo 11. Told with detail and humor. A great listen.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Straight From The Horse's Mouth

This book is awesome as it provides the nitty gritty of space flight and the early space program from Mike Collins, an Apollo 11 and Gemini 10 astronaut. His observations and level of detail, even quite technical at times, are breath-taking. You feel like you’re in the cockpit with him, Neil and Buzz.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Relaxed honest and very interesting

Of the various histories and memoirs of Apollo, Gemini, and the herioc age of American space flight, this is the best. Mike Collins clearly strived to be interesting and was very successful. He wrote as a layman who became an expert test pilot and astronaut. As the narrative unfolded, questions and new areas of interests would form in my mind. As they did, the narrative would shift to address them as if they were anticipated. Technical details were covered enough to satisfy interests. Human issues were covered with honesty. If you want to know what one astronaut thought of others, you'll find it here.

Covers Gemini 10 and Apollo 11 in great detail. Also covers missions where Mike served backup and supporting roles, including Apollo 8, very thoroughly.

David Colacci is very good as narrator. Pacing just right. He sounds close to what I think Mike Collins would have sounded like. Good impersonation of Nixon.

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Collins has a brilliant perspective on history

Fantastic book. I am a huge Apollo fan and just never felt much gravity from Michael Collins. This book changed everything for me. Collins is a laid back, funny and brilliant guy and a very competent pilot and astronaut. This book is a very fun and unique perspective on serious history. Lots of technical insight, but that is everywhere in astro books. This book has more of a human touch, and by the end, I felt like Collins was the perfect blend of test pilot AND regular Joe. I enjoyed this book far more then any other space race book I have devoured. great, great book. The reader on the audiobook is perfect in his role, and it's very well done! Thank you for this wonderful book!