Stargazing: Photographs Of The Night Sky From The Archives Of NASA by Nirmala Nataraj (book review).

As the title should indicate, ‘Stargazing: Photographs Of The Night Sky From The Archives Of NASA’, we are seeing photos from their archives. This covers everything from the Hubble Telescope to the International Space Station to the launches of the space shuttles. From these you see phenomenon from Earth overhead to the various nebulas and so on. A wealth of photographs are texted by Nirmala Nataraj, putting everything into perspective.

Some of the photos are done putting things into perspective and seeing different lights in the night sky but it does put things into perspective by their size. I think with some of these on the text page with photos from Earth there might have been some information as to where to look in the sky to see them, assuming you’re in the right hemisphere.

Oddly, when we see various photos of the Moon, we are shown it from the Northern Hemisphere and told in the Southern Hemisphere that they see Moon upside down. I guess we have to turn the book upside down to get the Australian view but it would be nice to see a proper photo in context with the right background just to get the right feel.

There are also a lot of photos of the aurora borealis from a variety of angles. By angles, I mean not just from Earth but from the ISS looking down showing how far it truly spreads out further giving information about the shape it really is. Think more like a wedge. When it comes to eclipses, they are also seen from a variety of perspectives.

This is a book that you have to read and absorb the photos over a period. Picking out favourites is a lot tougher. Oddly, the end of the book is almost a finale where you want to have more which is always a good idea.

GF Willmetts

August 2019

(pub: Chronicle Books. 127 page illustrated oblong hardback. Price: £25.00 (UK), $35.00 (US). ISBN: 978-1-4521-7489-1)

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Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

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