(The Viking Press 1949. $3.95) Text by Willy
Ley. Paintings by Chesley Bonestell.
This book is almost a necessity to all true scientifiction fans. Mr.Ley makes a masterly survey of conditions on all the planets and satellites in the light of modern knowledge.
The short introduction by Willy Ley is mainly a biography of Chesley Bonestell.
The book itself is divided into four sections.
FOUR, THREE, TWO, ONE ... ROCKET AWAY is a description of a rocket fired at the White Sands Proving Ground in New Mexico, and an explanation of why a rocket acts like a rocket. The chapter is ended by nine black and white illustrations of a transconti nental rocket in various scenes from a Long Island airport to the West Coast, and from Europe to Long Island.
Part Two is headed TARGET FOR TONIGHT: LUNA! It comprises a description of a moon rocket and what effects the trip would have on the crew. This is the most interesting chapter in the book with detailed outlines of the five main topographical feature s of the moon and a history of how the "craters" and mountain ranges came to be named. The five prominent features are the maria (or "seas"), mountain ranges, "craters," "rills," and "rays." The chapter ends with colored paintings of the moon rocket about to be launched, the Leibnitz Mountains, a panoramic view from a spaceship above the lunar pole, the rocket ship resting on a lunar plain, and sixteen black and white illustrations showing the trip to, a nd specific scenes on, the moon.
Chapter Three is THE SOLAR FAMILY, and deals with the discovery, size, atmosphere, temperature and life on the planets and their satellites. The text of the entire book is written in an interesting and easy to understand manner. At the end of this ch apter are paintings showing a scene on each of the planets Mercury, Venus, Mars, Mars as seen from Deimos, Saturn from Japstus, Saturn from Titan, Saturn from Mimas, a scene from an imaginary planet of the double star Mira, all in color, and 12 black and white pictures.
Chapter Four is entitled VERMIN OF THE SKIES, and is a history of the discovery of the asteroids. This final chapter ends with two scenes of Martian landscape, the surface of Jupiter, two pictures of Saturn's rings as seen from different parts of Satu rn, in color, and four additional illustrations in black and white.
Six of the colored plates are reproduced on the inside of the back and front covers and on the dust jacket.
The book is excellently printed and a fine addition to any library. The color plates alone are worth the cost of the book.
Text versions and page scans Judy Bemis
Data entry by Judy Bemis
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