Summary and book reviews of Dead Mars, Dying Earth by Dr John Brandenburg

Dead Mars, Dying Earth

by Dr John Brandenburg, Monica Rix Paxson

Dead Mars, Dying Earth
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  • Published:
    Mar 2000, 376 pages

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About this Book

Book Summary

A passionate call to arms to halt the destruction of the world’s forests and end the release of carbon dioxide from fossil fuels.

From The Publisher

Our readers are the best ones to tell you about this extraordinary book. Here's what they have to say:

"A fabulously alive, riveting and deeply human tale of scientific revelation and dawning conviction, which ultimately charts a clear, sane path through an incredibly dangerous time for the health and life of our planet."
Commander Mark Huber, retired, US Navy

"This is an intellectual tour-de-force. The authors range engagingly far and wide through the forest of scientific literature and disciplines to ferret out for us how Earth and Mars share a parallel ecological and geological history. Fortunately, rather than leaving us swimming in misery at the news, Brandenburg and Paxson give us the concrete steps to take to create a future Garden Earth, which will ensure that Earth avoids becoming a broken clone of dreary, dry and very dead Mars."
Dr. James Strange, field archeologist and Professor of Religious Studies, member Editorial Board of Biblical Archeology Review

"This book transformed my thinking about our planet with the same power and intensity that the Feminine Mystique changed my thinking about being a woman."
Nancy Hill, LCSW and Psychotherapist

Dead Mars, Dying Earth is "...Marvelous...a book which transforms the scientific history of global warming into a page-turning suspense story."
Dr. David Webb, Chairman, UN Conference on Peaceful Uses of Space, Member of the former US National Commission on Space

"An environmental story so big it takes two planets to tell it. These are stories of science to save a planets soul. They climb inside your heart and mind. Read Dead Mars Dying Earth and your home world will never look the same. Highly recommended."
Thom Hartmann, author The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight and Attention Deficit Disorder: A Different Perception

"From a series of stories which at first seem unrelated, a disturbing picture of a possible future emerges. Brandenburg and Paxson lead the reader to what seems to be an inescapable conclusion that we may be leading our planet to a point of no return and that something must be done, and done soon."
Dr. Mark Carlotto, leading US imaging scientist, Pacific Sierra Research

"Paxson and Brandenburg are masters of telling a story... they scare you, excite you, invite you to laugh, but most of all, to think."
Ulysses Doss, Humanities Professor, University of Montana

"Thank you for giving me the opportunity to read Dead Mars, Dying Earth. I actually read the entire book in one sitting last Sunday but have waited until now to write as the message was so powerful that I needed to let is sit for some time. The most meaningful books are those whose story or message linger long after the read and this book is truly one that will live with me.
"Not since the Limits to Growth, which I read nearly 30 years ago has a book so effectively made the case documenting the negative impact of man on the environment, while raising the specter of environmental catastrophe and yet holding out realistic solutions and hope. Dead Mars, Dying Earth goes one step further with a writing style that is less a documentary and more drama, holding the readers interest and effectively making the case that our Earth is exceptionally rare and exceptionally fragile.
Don Mayer, founder North Wind Power Company and owner of Small Dog Electronics (a major Internet computer sales firm)

"Upon reading Dead Mars, Dying Earth, I understand how foolish it is to be a conservationist without being equally an environmentalist... I thoroughly enjoyed the book and it has changed my consciousness...The envisioned solution to the problem is one of the few I've seen to an environmental problem, from legitimate scientists, that recognizes the economic hardships and resistance which radical 'environmentally pure' solutions would engender... This book does a fine job of avoiding these divisive political statements while explaining very clearly that these are grave concerns for everyone in all camps."
Tom Barnett, Senior Information Analyst, Salt River Project Power Company

"This is good! This is powerful! The science is informative, well written and nicely spiced and sliced with historical anecdotes and human dramas. I got started and could not put it down."
Dr. Horace Crater, Professor of Physics, The University of Tennessee Space Institute

"Fifty-five million years ago an abrupt, massive release of carbon from ocean reservoirs resulted in the warming of the oceans by 5 to 7 Centigrade. Extinctions occurred; and the Earths ecosystems were forever altered. Could it happen again? In Dead Mars, Dying Earth, Brandenburg and Paxson propose a similar scenario. Are we now on the verge of a massive release of carbon? This compelling book digs deep into the heart of carbon dioxide and other environmental concerns to offer both an inspired wake-up-call and an alarming warning."
James Erjavec, M.S., Environmental Geologist. Geochemist, Parsons Infrastructure & Technology Inc.

"The message in Dead Mars, Dying Earth is too compelling to ignore. It is a fast-paced, exciting wake-up call, reading almost like a scientific whodunit. In the end we meet the perpetrator and it is us. In our blind struggle for the survival of the fittest, richest and most beautiful, we seem to have forgotten many of the fundamentals necessary to support all life. We should no longer be engaged in a contest to get the best stateroom on board we are now pitched into real-life drama to save our entire ship. Our only hope is that it is still not too late to stem the tide of ignorance and apathy. This opportunity may no longer be available five years from now."
Jean-Claude Koven, President, Broadmoor Group

"This is the best book I've ever read! A meaty book, full of wondrous insight!"
Joel Bowker, Biologist and retired Industrial Chemist, Rustoleum Corporation

From Chapter 11 – Dying Earth

A small team of humans laboriously put on their protective suits and goggles. The suits were insulated and the goggles shielded their eyes and trapped moisture, so they could see. Once ready, they left the shelter of their vehicles and walked across the searing hot sand to the distant craters. Around them the sand, in surreal dunes, stretched everywhere to the far horizon, as beautiful as it was desolate, beneath an eternally sapphire sky.

The craters were large and poked out the sand dunes. The meteors that centuries before had created them had struck with such violence that the sand had fused to glass – as if at a nuclear weapon test site. The air waved and shimmered the scenery in the heat, its temperature a blazing 52 °C. As much as they wanted to study the site – after all, they had come so far to visit this forsaken place – the humans could not look for long. The suits did not work well and before long they ...

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Reviews

Media Reviews

Kirkus Reviews

New York, NY A passionate call to arms to halt the destruction of the world’s forests and end the release of carbon dioxide from fossil fuels, from a plasma physicist-Mars researcher. More interesting than the alarmist data are the autobiographical glimpses from Brandenburg’s career as a member of a Reagan-era “Star Wars” defense development team and his subsequent work on unmanned NASA space probes. ...He insists that some kind of life once thrived on the red planet, and that Earth might come to resemble Mars if his warnings aren’t heeded.

Publishing News - UK

The difficult task of making real science writing read with the compulsiveness of fiction is cannily achieved by Brandenburg and Paxson. Their straightforwardly compelling narrative manages to freight in a serious message about the destruction of the environment...This one is likely to join the ranks of major-selling scientific titles that cross over into popular appeal, and certainly carries a very salutary sting in the tail.

Reader Reviews

Matt Noponen

What can be said? This book is the wake-up call for anyone who might like their children's children to survive on this dying planet.

Gordon Kaswell

This is a remarkable book. While it's a bit desultory in its structure, it meticulously builds its case. And the news is not good. The planet appears to be in serious hot water. Brandenburg's understanding of the global warming process is ...   Read More

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