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on May 7, 2016
Very interesting, parc tical.
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on March 24, 2016
Interesting insight into a legendary figure in space exporation
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on March 9, 2016
This is a fascinating and informative read on the US space program from its earliest days to the end of the Apollo missions. It is an insider's account of the good, the bad and the ugly told from the operations view NOT the political.
Read it. It is well worth the time.
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on December 20, 2015
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on May 17, 2015
The "personal journal" writing style is difficult to stay engaged with. It's a shame, as the core material of the 'ops'-centric subject matter is where the excitement and drama of the early space program happens.

It's an easy quick ready... though I found myself often flipping between my other ebooks prior to finishing this one (i.e: 'get this one out of the way').
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on November 30, 2014
Great book! Told by the man who created the history. I lived through the space age, having been born in 1947. I listened to Sputnik on my dad's shortwave radio(he was an amateur radio buff), and I stood mesmerized as we were able to watch it pass overhead. That started, my love of space and man's greatest adventures. To read the details of the background provided by Gene Kranz was fantastic.
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on June 1, 2014
I really enjoyed this book, I read several that were similar to it but Failure is not an option brings to the spotlight a side of the space program that we don't hear about often. The mission control.
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on February 4, 2004
Gene Kranz's book tells a similar story, as told in books by Eugene Cerman, Scott Carpenter, and Chris Kraft, without being dominated by the author's ego. The others wrote good books. But Kranz avoids using personal attacks to tell his tale. The antidotes differ from those in other stories, as Kranz does not have a Boy Scout image to preserve. However, Kranz covers mission control only through Apollo 17.
This book is an excellent story of the space race from the ground.
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on September 14, 2003
In my boyhoood, I collected news clippings of space flights like some others collected stamps. While I knew of the the complete or near-disasters of Apollo 1 and 13 which never escaped media attention, I could not imagine how many more instances of nervous questions there were on the ground at Mission Control Center (MCC) during many of the celebrated successful space shots.
Gene Kranz's book provides an insider's view into the inner workings of MCC, all the way from the Mercury program to the final Apollo 17 mission in 1972. Probably better suited than almost any one else to tell this story on how things looked from the ground, Kranz worked his career in NASA up to Flight Director, including for the memorable Apollo 11 and 13 flights which provide some of the most dramatic passages in the book. While the world savored the euphoria of the first men landing on the moon, Kranz tells of how he and his team were worrying about near fatal computer problems with the lunar lander. Most readers will be familiar with the Apollo 13 episode which was well enacted on the big screen with Tom Hanks , but Kranz's book provides some of the finer detail that the movie misses.
The book not only provides flight details of the manned spaced shots, but discuss some of the important management and technical issues which need to be resolved to move from Mercury through Gemini and Apollo. Kranz's epilogue concludes with some of his broader observatons and recommendations for future space policy.
Readers will be struck by the authoritarian and disciplined management style in the program, which Kranz does not easily hide. The author would probably have done well to use a ghostwriter or good editor. But apart from its prose which lacks elegance and an easy flow, this book provides an illuminating insight into how such a complex management feat was accomplished.
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on March 24, 2003
I picked up this book out of interest in the Apollo program (thanks to Ron Howard and Tom Hanks). I just wanted more details, but found out I have an interest in the entire space program. This auto-biography of Gene Kranz's years at NASA reads like a well-written novel. It's a great first hand account of the early years of the space program. From Mercury to the final days of Apollo, this book is a fast paced thrill ride from start to finish. It shows the unwavering intelligence, engenuity and shear willpower of the American people.
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