A Ball, a Dog, and a Monkey: 1957 -- The Space Race Begins

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Full of exploding rockets, political wrangling, interservice rivalries, space cowboys, American spies, UFO sightings, Florida boomtowns and space-themed beauty pageants, the years 1957 and 1958 were a time when the US raced to match the Soviets in space and recover its pride. After having gone through archives and film footage and having interviewed many of the scientists, reporters, and others who were involved in the first year of the space race, D'Antonio brings to life all the people, places, and stories of a time when the U.S. went space-crazy and a flying monkey helped save the day. His book revives the early days of space with all the zaniness and urgency of the time.