The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe
The readers can download The Right Stuff Audiobook for free via Audible Free Trial.
The Right Stuff Audiobook by Tom Wolfe is a book on space exploration and the people associated with it. The book was published in 1979. The book has been written from several perspectives. The book opens with the perspectives of a test pilot’s wife. It then moves to show the terror of Jane Conard, the wife of astronaut Pete Conard Jr. as she thinks that her husband has been killed in a plane crash.
Then the book moves to the story of Chuck Yeager as he breaks the sound barrier and achieves the speed of Mach 1. Breaking the speed of sound was considered as improbable in those times. The author has nicely portrayed the perspective of the pilot who broke the speed of sound.
After Chuck Yeager, the author moves his focus to the Mercury 7 astronauts. The frustrations and annoyance of the Mercury 7 astronauts in the beginning of the space program have also been discussed in the book. The author has also discussed the political reasons for putting people up in space. He goes on to state that the Mercury astronauts were actually a burden and were sent in space for promotional reasons.
Instead of humans, initially, Chimpanzees were recommended to send in space. It was also suggested to use athletes for space missions as they were already accustomed to physical stress. However, later on, it was decided to send pilots into space. When the Mercury astronauts land in sea, the focus is more on protecting and ensuring the safety of the space capsule than the crew.
The Right Stuff Audiobook by Tom Wolfe became an instant hit among the critics and the readers. The author’s description and portrayal of the Mercury 7 astronauts and the space exploration in that era is commendable. It is a book which depicts the story of American heroes.
The author tells the story of ordinary men who did extraordinary things and achieved the unthinkable which helped America edge out Russia in space race and technology. The narrative is simple and fluid and the readers will be captivated by the storytelling. This is a recommended book especially for readers having interest in space race and space exploration.