• Shoot for the Moon

  • The Space Race and the Extraordinary Voyage of Apollo 11
  • By: James Donovan
  • Narrated by: Allan Robertson
  • Length: 13 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (255 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

"This is the best book on Apollo that I have read. Extensively researched and meticulously accurate, it successfully traces not only the technical highlights of the program but also the contributions of the extraordinary people who made it possible." (Mike Collins, Command module pilot, Apollo 11) 

For the 50th anniversary, the epic story of Apollo 11 and the astronauts, flight controllers, and engineers who made it happen, by the author of the best-selling A Terrible Glory and The Blood of Heroes

On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the Moon, a moment forever ingrained in history. Perhaps the world's greatest technological achievement - and a triumph of American spirit and ingenuity - the Apollo 11 mission, and the entire Apollo program, was a mammoth undertaking involving more than 410,000 men and women dedicated to putting a man on the Moon and winning the Space Race against the Soviets. 

Seen through the eyes of the those who lived it, Shoot for the Moon reveals the dangers, the challenges, and the sheer determination that defined not only Apollo 11, but also the Mercury and Gemini missions that made it possible. Both sweeping and intimate, and based on exhaustive research and dozens of fresh interviews, best-selling author James Donovan's Shoot for the Moon is the definitive and thrilling account of one of humankind's most extraordinary feats of exploration.

©2019 James Donovan (P)2019 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"Donovan combines his masterful research skills and narrative gifts in recounting the full story of the most famous Apollo trip...Donovan's history is a powerfully written and irresistible celebration of the Apollo missions." (Booklist, starred review)

"It was one of humankind's greatest achievements, and here, perhaps for the first time, is the whole story, fastidiously reported and elegantly told. With Shoot for the Moon, James Donovan captures it all - the science, the engineering, the clashing egos, the Cold War politics. But what's even more impressive, he does it without depriving us of the essential magic that was Apollo, this Promethean program that dared to aim as high and as far as man could go." (Hampton Sides, author, Ghost Soldiers, In the Kingdom of Ice, and On Desperate Ground)

"With a brilliant eye for detail and an elegant sense of historical narrative, Donovan's Shoot for the Moon is sure to be a space race classic." (Annie Jacobsen, best-selling author & Pulitzer Prize finalist)

What listeners say about Shoot for the Moon

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My First Audible Book I ever bought

I really enjoyed this book it was so interesting and had more jam packed technical information that you thought this Author was a former Nasa Astronaut.When I heard that Buzz Aldrin said it was the best Book he ever read on Appllo 11 and he was there.Fantastic! Exciting ! Read! I have played it 3 or 4 times .Works great with Amazon's Alexa! She knows how you are progressing by chapter and stops and starts the Book on a dime.Going in for My Fifth read!!

9 people found this helpful

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Well Told, But Over Plowed Ground

If you do not know much about the Apollo program, and are looking for a well-written book detailing the space race through the Apollo 11 flight, this is a good choice. It covers the entire story well, but avoids details that are tedious except for space junkies. The narration is good. The last part covering the lunar landing in detail is well done.

However, this is all plowed ground, and there are no revelations here. There are many other books that are at least as good. Andrew Chaikin's "A Man on the Moon" comes to mind. One of the best accounts is by one of the participants. I highly recommend Michael Collins' "Carrying the Fire."

Apollo 11 continues to fascinate, and I'm sure there will be other treatments as well

7 people found this helpful

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Unbelievably well written and well narrated!

If you were a youngster in 1969 as I was, you definitely remember watching the live coverage of the walk on the moon. The entire world stopped and took part. Mr. Donovan has written a highly accurate detailed account. If you have an engineering background of any kind you will highly enjoy this work. Mr. Robertson was the perfect voice for this narration. Well done to you both.

jhysaw

6 people found this helpful

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Fascinating and inspiring!

Wow! A detailed, well told account of how space exploration began and culminated in the moon landing. There are so many life lessons in the story such as: dreaming big (JFK’s vision), taking risks, the pursuit of perfection, overcoming fears and failures and devastating setbacks, the power of preparation, handling stress. I could go on. I am so glad to have a much deeper appreciation for the men and women involved in space exploration!

3 people found this helpful

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Overview of space race

Great overview of the space race till Apollo 11. Contains good information about the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs. There is just too much to cover in one book, but the author does a great job of covering the major turning points and keeps the reader engaged.

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I hate Political correctness.

couldn't read more than one sentence from the Bible on Apollo 8 PC really Sucks.

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Glorious event, well presented.

This extraordinary event is an engineering achievement #1 of all times, and probably the best that mankind ever produced.

Presentation was well above expectation; exciting and clear.

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Decent overall

Good look at the space race with some political context. It's a pretty broad overview though, so if you've read much on any of the Mercury or early Apollo flights this book probably won't tell you anything new.

Narration was generally good, but my eye twitched every time he pronounced "capsule" as "cap-SOOOL." I don't know if I've ever heard a narrator butcher a common word that badly, and obviously it gets used all the time in a space book.

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Memories like the corners of my mind...

My dad was involved with every stage of space flight described in this book, including the X-15 Program. I was young, but remember almost every major part of this story. What a wonderful adventure back through the cobwebs. Thank you for the journey.

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Great book, poor narration

I really enjoyed the way the story is told, but the narrator sometimes almost mumbles his words making it difficult to understand and forcing me to rewind multiple times and keep changing the volume.