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How to Astronaut

An Insider's Guide to Leaving Planet Earth

By Terry Virts

A wildly entertaining account of the rules, lessons, procedures, and experiences of space travel, How to Astronaut is a book that will appeal to anyone— male or female, young or old—with even a passing interest in space. Written by Col. Terry Virts, a former astronaut, space shuttle pilot, and International Space Station commander who spent 200 consecutive days in space, it answers all of our curious questions and much more: Here’s how to survive that first brush with weightlessness (in the so-called vomit comet); the nearly indescribable thrill of a first blastoff; managing the daily tasks—eating, bathing, doing chores, going to the bathroom— that are anything but ordinary when you’re orbiting the earth at 17,000 miles per hour; how to don your space suit and head out to work on a spacewalk (“alone in the vacuum”); how to prepare for emergencies of all kinds, from managing “space brain” to dealing with a dead crew member; and what it’s like to return to Earth, including something as seemingly simple as walking after spending six months in zero-g.

A born storyteller, Virts reveals the often-untold side of space travel in 51 short chapters filled with a mix of you-are-there detail, a dose of science made simple, and the inherent drama of describing something few will ever know firsthand.
 

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Terry Virts headshot

Terry Virts

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Review quotes
"There’s something intriguing to be learned on practically every page… This book captures the details of an extraordinary job, and turns even the mundane aspects of space travel into something fascinating."
Publishers Weekly

"How to Astronaut is an amusing and enlightening insight into an astronaut's work life.... This is an eye-opening insider's view on what it's really like to be an astronaut: the joys, the dangers, the fear, and the day-to-day reality of it. Virts' writing is humorous, playful, down to earth, and often wise."
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Product Details
Categories
Number of pages
320
Publication date
September 15, 2020
ISBN
9781523509614