92 books like Life With Hubble

By David S. Leckrone,

Here are 92 books that Life With Hubble fans have personally recommended if you like Life With Hubble. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Rock from Mars: A Detective Story on Two Planets

Stephen P. Maran Author Of Astronomy for Dummies

From my list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve studied space for 60+ years, including spotting Sputnik from atop 30 Rock for Operation Moonwatch; monitoring an exploding star for a PhD at University of Michigan, leading the Remotely Controlled Telescope project at Kitt Peak National Observatory, hunting pulsars from Arizona and Chile, and helping develop scientific instruments for the Hubble Space Telescope. I worked for 5 years at Kitt Peak and 35 years for NASA. As Press Officer (now retired) of the American Astronomical Society, I organized press conferences on many notable cosmic discoveries. Minor Planet 9768 was named Stephenmaran for me, but I haven’t seen it yet. What I have spotted are five exceptional books on space.  Enjoy!

Stephen's book list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA

Stephen P. Maran Why did Stephen love this book?

Politics, ambition, and science collided when NASA announced that a small rock that fell on Antarctica contained tiny fossils of ancient life on Mars. Advance plans for the public report were kept secret while coordinated all the way up through President Bill Clinton. Aides wondered if the great discovery would help his re-election. But after a televised press conference and the subsequent media circus, many qualified scientists disputed the claimed fossils. NASA is still searching for past or present life on Mars.  They will surely take greater care in reaching future conclusions, won’t they? And if you may wonder why an alleged DC sex worker had prior knowledge of the “breakthrough,” read ace Washington Post reporter (now retired) Kathy Sawyer’s brilliant and thorough account.

By Kathy Sawyer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Rock from Mars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this riveting book, acclaimed journalist Kathy Sawyer reveals the deepest mysteries of space and some of the most disturbing truths on Earth. The Rock from Mars is the story of how two planets and the spheres of politics and science all collided at the end of the twentieth century.
It began sixteen million years ago. An asteroid crashing into Mars sent fragments flying into space and, eons later, one was pulled by the Earth’s gravity onto an icy wilderness near the southern pole. There, in 1984, a geologist named Roberta Score spotted it, launching it on a roundabout path…


Book cover of Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

Stephen P. Maran Author Of Astronomy for Dummies

From my list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve studied space for 60+ years, including spotting Sputnik from atop 30 Rock for Operation Moonwatch; monitoring an exploding star for a PhD at University of Michigan, leading the Remotely Controlled Telescope project at Kitt Peak National Observatory, hunting pulsars from Arizona and Chile, and helping develop scientific instruments for the Hubble Space Telescope. I worked for 5 years at Kitt Peak and 35 years for NASA. As Press Officer (now retired) of the American Astronomical Society, I organized press conferences on many notable cosmic discoveries. Minor Planet 9768 was named Stephenmaran for me, but I haven’t seen it yet. What I have spotted are five exceptional books on space.  Enjoy!

Stephen's book list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA

Stephen P. Maran Why did Stephen love this book?

The first known object from interstellar space, ʻOumuamua, plunged through the solar system and headed out again in 2017. It was seen by telescopes for just 17 days, enough to tell that it wasn’t as the saying goes, a bird, a plane, or Superman. Perhaps it was a space vehicle or other artifact from distant aliens, an older and superior civilization than ours. At least that’s what the brilliant Harvard astrophysicist Avi Loeb suggests. I think his theory is soundly based on the limited observational data, but that doesn’t make it true, and other astronomers won’t touch aliens with a ten-foot telescope. They offer alternative explanations none of which clearly fit the data but that smack less of science fiction. Inquiring minds should read the book and decide for themselves.

By Avi Loeb,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Extraterrestrial as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'An astronomical Sherlock Holmes' WASHINGTON POST

'Visionary' STEPHEN GREENBLATT

'Compelling . . . The book is not so much a claim for one object as an argument for a more open-minded approach to science - a combination of humility and wonder' NEW STATESMAN</font>

Harvard's top astronomer takes us inside the mind-blowing story of the first interstellar visitor to our solar system

In late 2017, scientists at a Hawaiian observatory glimpsed a strange object soaring through our inner solar system. Astrophysicist Avi Loeb conclusively showed it was not an asteroid; it was moving too fast along a strange orbit, and leaving…


Book cover of Spacefarers: How Humans Will Settle the Moon, Mars, and Beyond

Stephen P. Maran Author Of Astronomy for Dummies

From my list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve studied space for 60+ years, including spotting Sputnik from atop 30 Rock for Operation Moonwatch; monitoring an exploding star for a PhD at University of Michigan, leading the Remotely Controlled Telescope project at Kitt Peak National Observatory, hunting pulsars from Arizona and Chile, and helping develop scientific instruments for the Hubble Space Telescope. I worked for 5 years at Kitt Peak and 35 years for NASA. As Press Officer (now retired) of the American Astronomical Society, I organized press conferences on many notable cosmic discoveries. Minor Planet 9768 was named Stephenmaran for me, but I haven’t seen it yet. What I have spotted are five exceptional books on space.  Enjoy!

Stephen's book list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA

Stephen P. Maran Why did Stephen love this book?

I don’t know who will reach Mars first, Elon Musk, NASA astronauts, or Chinese Taikonauts. Whoever does must deal with serious problems of long-duration space flight, including lethal radiation and life support, plus issues of living, breathing, and raising food on Mars or other objects, such as Callisto, Jupiter’s second-largest moon. No natural object in the solar system other than Earth is inhabitable. Chris Wanjek, a science writer with NASA experience and solid knowledge of medical matters and nutrition, writes with humor; he was a contributing joke writer to the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Wanjek advocates terraforming Mars to support human colonists. That means engineering changes in the planet to enable people to live there without resources from Earth. If you’re thinking of relocating from Earth, read Spacefarers first.

By Christopher Wanjek,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Spacefarers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Telegraph Best Book of the Year

A wry and compelling take on the who, how, and why of near-future colonies in space. From bone-whittling microgravity to eye-popping profits, the risks and rewards of space settlement have never been so close at hand.

More than fifty years after the Apollo 11 moon landing, why is there so little human presence in space? Will we ever reach Mars? What will it take to become a multiplanet species, colonizing the solar system and traveling to other stars?

Spacefarers meets these questions head on. While many books have speculated on the possibility of…


Book cover of Operation Moonglow: A Political History of Project Apollo

Stephen P. Maran Author Of Astronomy for Dummies

From my list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve studied space for 60+ years, including spotting Sputnik from atop 30 Rock for Operation Moonwatch; monitoring an exploding star for a PhD at University of Michigan, leading the Remotely Controlled Telescope project at Kitt Peak National Observatory, hunting pulsars from Arizona and Chile, and helping develop scientific instruments for the Hubble Space Telescope. I worked for 5 years at Kitt Peak and 35 years for NASA. As Press Officer (now retired) of the American Astronomical Society, I organized press conferences on many notable cosmic discoveries. Minor Planet 9768 was named Stephenmaran for me, but I haven’t seen it yet. What I have spotted are five exceptional books on space.  Enjoy!

Stephen's book list on space from someone with 35 years at NASA

Stephen P. Maran Why did Stephen love this book?

When NASA’s manned spaceflight program began, engineers focused on technology to launch men, sustain them in orbit, and eventually take them to the Moon and back. But U.S. Presidents approved the program to improve America’s image, not for scientific purposes. They wanted to counter the successive shocks of the USSR’s first artificial satellite and first person in space. This wasn’t about bragging rights, but to deter emerging nations from choosing communism over democracy. NASA launches welcomed media and US astronauts were sent abroad, guided by the State Department. They gave unscripted speeches, so listeners could relate to them as regular folks. After John Glenn orbited Earth, his Friendship 7 capsule went on tour, drawing 4 million visitors in Bombay alone. Operation Moonglow explains the unspoken politics that drove early NASA.

By Teasel Muir-Harmony,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Operation Moonglow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On July 20th, 1969, over half of the world's population tuned in to witness the first lunar landing, waiting with bated breath as Neil Armstrong ventured outside the cabin door of Apollo 11 and declared "that's one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind." As the most expensive civilian scientific and technological program in American history, Project Apollo symbolised the unmatched prestige of American space exploration. Yet despite appearances, the project was never just about winning the Space Race, advancing scientific progress, or even conquering the final frontier. Instead, the ambitions of Project Apollo would ultimately reveal…


Book cover of Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier

Christopher Wanjek Author Of Spacefarers: How Humans Will Settle the Moon, Mars, and Beyond

From my list on how to not die on Mars.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an author and freelance health and science writer with expertise is in health, nutrition, medicine, environmental sciences, physics, and astronomy. I try to address all these topics with healthy skepticism, realism, and a sense of humanity and humor. I am the author of three books: Spacefarers (2020), Food At Work (2005), and Bad Medicine (2003). I also have written more than 500 newspaper, magazine, and web articles for periodicals such as The Washington Post and Smithsonian Magazine. My upcoming book concerns the engineering of the NASA James Webb Space Telescope (MIT Press, 2022).

Christopher's book list on how to not die on Mars

Christopher Wanjek Why did Christopher love this book?

During his speech at the World Government Summit 2018 in Dubai, Neil deGrasse Tyson confessed that his original title for the book Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier was Failure to Launch: The Dreams and Delusions of Space Enthusiasts. The publisher rejected this title. I would have purchased this book either way, but the original title is on the mark. Tyson is one of my greatest sources of inspiration because he is so clear-eyed about practical challenges in space travel: from the physical and biological to the political and philosophical. Space Chronicles is one of many fine entry points into his brilliant mind.

By Neil Degrasse Tyson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Space Chronicles as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Neil deGrasse Tyson is a rare breed of astrophysicist, one who can speak as easily and brilliantly with popular audiences as with professional scientists. Now that NASA has put human space flight effectively on hold, Tyson's views on the future of space travel and America's role in that future are especially timely and urgent.


Book cover of This New Ocean: The Story of the First Space Age

Stephen J. Pyne Author Of The Great Ages of Discovery: How Western Civilization Learned about a Wider World

From my list on the history of exploration.

Why am I passionate about this?

My 15 seasons at Grand Canyon inspired me to understand its story of revelation, which led to a fascination with the history of exploration overall.  This has resulted in a series of books about explorers, places explored, and a conceptual scaffolding by which to understand it all: a geologist of the American West (Grove Karl Gilbert); Antarctica (The Ice); revisiting the Rim with better conceptual gear, How the Canyon Became Grand; and using its mission as a narrative spine, Voyager: Exploration, Space, and Third Great Age of DiscoveryThe grand sweep deserved a grand summary, so I’ve ended with The Great Ages of Discovery.

Stephen's book list on the history of exploration

Stephen J. Pyne Why did Stephen love this book?

The current era of exploration began after World War II, announced by the International Geophysical Year. With Antarctica as a pivot, exploration moved down to the world’s ocean depths and out to interplanetary space. Space got the most attention – it was visible and had a literature that ice and abyss couldn’t match.

With vigor, clarity, and a lively tempo, This New Ocean narrates the space race in both its manned and robotic expressions, its American and Soviet versions, its technology, and its politics. Burrows is an enthusiast, but not an ideologue or a blinkered astrofuturist. A good survey and introduction, This New Ocean makes a lively read.

By William E. Burrows,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked This New Ocean as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It was all part of man's greatest adventure--landing men on the Moon and sending a rover to Mars, finally seeing the edge of the universe and the birth of stars, and launching planetary explorers across the solar system to Neptune and beyond.
        
The ancient dream of breaking gravity's hold and taking to space became a reality only because of the intense cold-war rivalry between the superpowers, with towering geniuses like Wernher von Braun and Sergei Korolyov shelving dreams of space travel and instead developing rockets for ballistic missiles and space spectaculars. Now that Russian archives are open and thousands of…


Book cover of Mining the Sky: Untold Riches From the Asteroids, Comets and Planets

Gordon L. Dillow Author Of Fire in the Sky: Cosmic Collisions, Killer Asteroids, and the Race to Defend Earth

From my list on giant space rocks that threaten Earth.

Why am I passionate about this?

In 2016 I was enjoying an early morning cup of coffee on my back porch in Arizona when an eerie red light lit up the dark sky, followed seconds later by a tremendous distant explosion that rattled my cup and set my dogs howling. As a soldier and journalist, I had seen all kinds of human and natural catastrophes and mayhem, but never anything like this. Later I was astonished to learn that this event, which was seen as far away as Texas, was caused by a small asteroid the size of a refrigerator that had exploded in the atmosphere with the energy equivalent of a million pounds of TNT. I wanted to find out more – and I did.

Gordon's book list on giant space rocks that threaten Earth

Gordon L. Dillow Why did Gordon love this book?

This book is about the positive side of Near-Earth Objects – that is, they can benefit mankind as well as threaten it. Lewis explains how asteroids are chock full of valuable minerals – iron, nickel, platinum, iridium, and so on – that are either rare or difficult and messy to extract on Earth. Lewis persuasively argues that it’s not just possible but almost inevitable that Earthlings will eventually start extracting those space rock riches -- not so much to bring them back to Earth but to use them for manufacturing industries in space, thus sparing our planet from much of the pollution that threatens our world. It’s not just futuristic day-dreaming; already private companies are spending big money to develop space-mining technologies. The bottom line of this fascinating book is that there’s gold in them thar hills – or rather, in them thar far reaches of space. And sooner than…

By John S. Lewis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mining the Sky as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

While we worry over the depletion of the earth's natural resources, the pollution of our planet, and the challenges presented by the earth's growing population, billions of dollars worth of metals, fuels, and life-sustaining substances await us in nearby space. In this visionary book, noted planetary scientist John S. Lewis explains how we can mine these precious metals from the asteroids, comets, and planets in our own solar system for use in space construction projects. And this is just one of the possibilities. Join John S. Lewis as he contemplates milking the moons of Mars for water and hollowing out…


Book cover of Mission to Mars: My Vision for Space Exploration

Sylvia Engdahl Author Of Journey Between Worlds

From my list on colonizing Mars of interest to young adults.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a long-term advocate of space colonization I’ve always been drawn to Mars, not by adventure stories but by the idea that ordinary people may someday live there. So this was the theme of my first novel. I wrote it before we had gone to the moon, though it wasn't published until 1970, after my better-known book Enchantress from the Stars. When in 2006 I revised it for republication, little about Mars needed changing; mainly I removed outdated sexist assumptions and wording. Yet the book still hasn’t reached its intended audience because though meant for girls who aren’t already space enthusiasts, its publishers persisted in labeling it science fiction rather than Young Adult romance.

Sylvia's book list on colonizing Mars of interest to young adults

Sylvia Engdahl Why did Sylvia love this book?

Buzz Aldrin, best known for having been one of the first two astronauts to walk on the moon, has been active throughout the time since then in promoting an expanded space program. In this book he goes into detail—but not too much detail for non-technical readers—about how space activity can help to preserve Earth, in addition to describing various proposals for returning to the moon and reaching Mars, He believes explorers should go there to stay permanently and build a base rather than return to Earth between trips. The book, published in 2013, was overoptimistic in suggesting that as early as 2020 selected astronauts could be asked to commit to spending the rest of their lives on Mars, but I’m sure that when opportunity arises there will be volunteers.

By Buzz Aldrin, Leonard David,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mission to Mars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Can astronauts reach Mars by 2035? Absolutely, says Buzz Aldrin, one of the first men to walk on the moon. Celebrated astronaut, brilliant engineer, bestselling author, Aldrin believes it is not only possibly but vital to America's future to keep pushing the space frontier outward for the sake of exploration, science, development, commerce, and security. What we need, he argues, is a commitment by the U.S. President as rousing as JFK's promise to reach the moon by the end of the 1960s-an audacious, inspiring goal-and a unified vision for space exploration. In Mission to Mars, Aldrin plots that trajectory, stressing…


Book cover of Asteroid Hunters

Gordon L. Dillow Author Of Fire in the Sky: Cosmic Collisions, Killer Asteroids, and the Race to Defend Earth

From my list on giant space rocks that threaten Earth.

Why am I passionate about this?

In 2016 I was enjoying an early morning cup of coffee on my back porch in Arizona when an eerie red light lit up the dark sky, followed seconds later by a tremendous distant explosion that rattled my cup and set my dogs howling. As a soldier and journalist, I had seen all kinds of human and natural catastrophes and mayhem, but never anything like this. Later I was astonished to learn that this event, which was seen as far away as Texas, was caused by a small asteroid the size of a refrigerator that had exploded in the atmosphere with the energy equivalent of a million pounds of TNT. I wanted to find out more – and I did.

Gordon's book list on giant space rocks that threaten Earth

Gordon L. Dillow Why did Gordon love this book?

This book is about asteroid hunters, written by an asteroid hunter – and she clearly loves her work. Nugent is an assistant professor of computational physics and planetary science at Olin College and worked on NASA’s Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE), which discovered hundreds of Potential Hazardous Objects – asteroids and comets – that could someday threaten Earth. You don’t have to be a scientist to enjoy this book. Nugent patiently walks us through the process of finding and tracking potentially dangerous space rocks with skill and passion for her subject.

By Carrie Nugent,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Asteroid Hunters as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Dr Carrie Nugent is an asteroid hunter - one of the select group of scientists working diligently to map our cosmic neighbourhood. For the first time ever we are reaching the point where we may be able to prevent a natural disaster resulting from an asteroid collision. Nugent will delve into the impact asteroids have had in the past: the extinction of the dinosaurs, the earth-sized hole Shoemaker-Levy 9 left in Jupiter just a few years ago, how the surprise hit on Chelyabinsk in Russia could have started a war and unlucky Ms Anne Hodges - the only person (that…


Book cover of Coyote

J.C. Gemmell Author Of Tionsphere

From my list on future history with a glimpse of what might happen.

Why am I passionate about this?

There were 3.7 billion people on Earth when I was born. By November 2022, there will be 8 billion. I am fascinated and terrified by this growth. I love stories that address this issue head-on, be it colonisation of other planets, compulsory euthanasia, or uploading consciousness into machines. When I started writing, I didn’t realise how I was bringing these themes together—I was writing a book I’d love to read. Now I can see those influences, and I am grateful for the authors who have shaped my thinking and my work.

J.C.'s book list on future history with a glimpse of what might happen

J.C. Gemmell Why did J.C. love this book?

Coyote is a habitable moon orbiting Bear, a gas giant forty light years away. Earth’s first interstellar ship is hijacked by a group of engineers and scientists, usurping the post-US government loyalists who intend to make Coyote their home.

This book speaks to the aspirational me, the part that wants to evolve beyond Earth and build a new future, a better future, but inevitably the hubris of modern man threatens to destroy paradise. It’s a conceptually magnificent colonisation book built on plausible science, yet its success lies in the characters’ need to work together to conquer a seemingly benign world. I frequently revisit Coyote because it’s a great story, brilliantly told, and it makes me gaze at the stars.

By Allen Steele,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Coyote as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Coyote marks a dramatic new turn in the career of Allen Steele, Hugo Award-winning author of Chronospace. Epic in scope, passionate in its conviction, and set against a backdrop of plausible events, it tells the brilliant story of Earth’s first interstellar colonists—and the mysterious planet that becomes their home…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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