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On July 20, 1969, the world stood still to watch thirty-eight-year-old American astronaut Neil A. Armstrong become the first person to step on the surface of another heavenly body. Perhaps no words in human history became better known than those few he uttered at that historic moment. In a penetrating exploration of American hero worship, Hansen addresses the complex legacy of the First Man, as an astronaut and an individual.
"To understand Armstrong on his own terms is to see a large truth of our time.... A compelling and nuanced portrait of the astronaut." -- James Tobin, Chicago Tribune
"A lot of us have been waiting for a long time for a book like this one, and it was well worth the wait. . . . Will likely stand as the definitive biography of Neil Armstrong." -- Tom D. Crouch, senior curator, Aeronautics, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution
"A fine authorized biography brimming with groundbreaking research, fresh anecdotes and fair-minded analysis. . . . Hansen should be commended for decoding the enigmatic Armstrong; a space hero short on words but sky-high on Midwestern integrity." -- Douglas Brinkley, The New York Times Book Review
"Historian James Hansen relates in intricate detail the tragedy, mishaps, and successes of the first man on the moon. He expertly combines the saga of Armstrong with the historical background of America's introduction to the Age of Space and corrects some of the myths surrounding Neil's journey from novice aviator to commanding the first lunar landing. An excellent book to arouse the memories of armchair astronauts. --Captain James A. Lovell, commander, Apollo 13
"If you think you know everything about Neil Armstrong and America's historic mission. . . First Man contributes a host of fascinating new insights into the nature of the spacefaring enterprise itself. A book for all time." -- Walter Cronkite