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Moondust by Andrew Smith


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Sarah Broadhurst's view...

Reviewed on Richard and Judy on 1 March 2006. Reading this makes you wonder how the moon-walks ever happened at all. It also makes you realise what extraordinary men these nine privileged people are. Andrew Smith sought them out to discover not only their reaction to the moon-landings, but also how they have fared over the years. It’s a wonderful collective biography.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst


Moondust by Andrew Smith

In 1999, Andrew Smith was interviewing Charlie Duke, astronaut and moon walker, for the Sunday Times. During the course of the interview, which took place at Duke’s Texan home, the telephone rang and Charlie left the room to answer it. When he returned, some twenty minutes later, he seemed visibly upset. It seemed that he’d just heard that, the previous day, one of his fellow moon walkers, the astronaut Pete Conrad, had died. ‘Now there’s only nine of us,’ he said. Only nine. Which meant that, one day not long from now, there would be none, and when that day came, no one on earth would have known the giddy thrill of gazing back at us from the surface of the moon. The thought shocked Andrew Smith, and still does. Moondust is his attempt to understand why.


‘Smith’s mix of reporting and meditation is highly entertaining, and this superb book is a fitting tribute to a unique band of twentieth-century heroes’ GQ

‘A moving and thorough account of America’s last great act of optimism’ Guardian

‘Fascinating and disturbing. We know what happened inside the Apollo Space Craft, but what went on inside the astronauts’ minds? Did any of them really recover from their strange journey? Extremely thought-provoking’ J. G. Ballard

About the Author

Andrew Smith

Andrew Smith is English although he was born in New York and lived in California until he was in his early teens. He watched the moon landings on TV in his San Francisco home.

He has written for the Melody Maker, the Face, the Sunday Times, and the Observer where he has written on the KLF, death row, Damien Hirst, Jeff Bezos, Bianca Jagger and much much more. He currently lives with his family in Norfolk.

Photograph © Jaime Turner

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Book Info

Publication date

6th July 2009


Andrew Smith

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Bloomsbury Publishing Plc


384 pages


Biography / Autobiography
The Real World
eBook Favourites

Popular astronomy & space



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