Back to the Moon
Travis S. Taylor and Les Johnson
Baen, Dec 7 2010, $25.00
The second race to the moon has begun between America and China, but also trying to beat the big nations to the earth satellite is the private sector firm Space Excursions. NASA selects astronaut Bill Stetson as the mission commander of the first American flight to the moon since Apollo ended four decades ago. Space Excursions CEO Gary Childers selects Paul Gesling to serve as chief pilot of Dreamscape to orbit the moon with wealthy clients.
However, during test runs nothing goes right for the Space Excursions flight or with the NASA launch. Bill takes control and soon realizes the same defective circuit board caused the problems; a circuit board made in China. At the same time a malware Trojan horse sends Space Excursions hardware and software information to China. As NASA counts down to the moon launch, China sends a ship into space while the Dreamscape leaves earth with five passengers on board. They soon find a shocker waiting for them that changes NASA’s lunar landing plan.
The two authors bring their NASA experience to this exiting entertaining space race science fiction thriller. Their background in propulsion technology serves well for this fun thriller as the audience learns much about the science of rocketing into space while also feeling as if we are part of the crew. Though the cast is not as developed beyond heroism, readers will relish this exhilarating Back to the Moon as the space race returns with two new contenders including a private sector entry challenging America for supremacy beyond the troposphere.