The Earth Gazers: Book summary and reviews of The Earth Gazers by Christopher Potter

The Earth Gazers

On Seeing Ourselves

by Christopher Potter

The Earth Gazers by Christopher Potter X
The Earth Gazers by Christopher Potter

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Book Summary

It will soon be the fiftieth anniversary of the first manned mission to the moon, when men first saw for themselves the Earth as a sphere falling through space - they saw a world without borders and these images continue to give hope and inspire.

Only twenty-four people have seen the whole earth. The most beautiful and influential photographs ever made were taken, almost as an afterthought, by the astronauts of the Apollo space program from the moon. They inspired a generation of scientists and environmentalists to think more seriously about our responsibility for this tiny oasis in space, this "blue marble" falling through empty darkness.

The Earth Gazers is a book about the long road to the capture of those unforgettable images. It is a history of the space program and of the ways in which it transformed our view of the earth and changed the lives of the astronauts who walked in space and on the moon. It is the story of the often blemished visionaries who inspired that journey into space: Charles Lindbergh, Robert Goddard and Wernher Von Braun, and of the courageous pilots who were the first humans to escape the Earth's orbit.  These twenty-four people saw Earth in all its singular glory, and the legacy of the stories of these "Earth Gazers," resonate richly even today.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Despite covering familiar ground, Potter delivers an enthralling account of the golden age of manned space travel that emphasizes the transcendent experiences of everyone involved, and he makes a convincing case that America lost something vital when it ended." - Kirkus

"Potter's story is one of individuals as much as of advancement, but the sum is less than its constituent parts." - Publishers Weekly

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Author Information

Christopher Potter Author Biography

Photo: Joyce Ravid

Christopher Potter is the author of three books: The Earth Gazers: On seeing ourselves, How to Make a Human Being: A body of evidence and You Are Here: A portable history of the universe.

He is the former publisher and managing director of Fourth Estate, now an imprint of Harper Collins.

As an editor he worked with many writers, including Gilbert Adair, Paul Bailey, Deborah Cadbury, Michael Chabon, Michael Cunningham, Maureen Duffy, Marcus Du Sautoy, James Gleick, Kathryn Harrison, Paul Hoffman, Kate Jennings, Mary McGarry Morris, Hilary Mantel, Mark Merlis, Richard Panek, Annie Proulx, Matt Ridley, Carol Shields, Peter Singer, Simon Singh, Dava Sobel, Kate Summerscale and Salley Vickers.

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