Moonbound: Apollo 11 and the Dream of Spaceflight

Moonbound: Apollo 11 and the Dream of Spaceflight

This substantial history makes for an impressive graphic novel. Moonbound: Apollo 11 and the Dream of Spaceflight by Jonathan Fetter-Vorm alternates chapters between the story of the Apollo 11 moon landing (in full color) and topics related to spaceflight (in monochrome). Those latter range greatly, involving a lot more than a technical memoir, including a survey of historical astronomers, a history of rocketry, astronaut training, designing the spacesuits, and the symbolism of the moon to various cultures.

It’s well-drawn, straightforward and easy to read but visually interesting and diverse. I was particularly impressed to see previously-unknown information on the women who trained as astronauts in the 1960s and those who made the computer programming to support the moon launch possible. Yet, for all this, I had to force myself through the book.

Moonbound: Apollo 11 and the Dream of Spaceflight

I was left cold and uninvolved. It was educational and comprehensive — perhaps too much so. I don’t care about this topic in this much depth, and at times, it felt as though I was cramming for an exam, swamped by the detail. If you are more interested in the history or topic than I am, this is a glorious read.

Moonbound will make an excellent edition to any library and is a thorough resource on the topics it delves into. I hope others enjoy it more than I did, though. (The publisher provided a review copy.)

One comment

  • Jim Perreault

    This does look like a good read for the 50th anniversary of the landing. I’ll have to track down a copy.

    Regarding it being too technical and dry, I am wondering how it compares to “13 minutes to the Moon” (a BBC podcast about the moon landing) ? That too is quite technical, but does a good job of conveying how ambitious, dangerous, and exciting the moon landing was.

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