The book focuses on astronauts, the history of space exploration, and what potential problems there would be if a mission to mars were to take place.
And I loved all of it.
Mary Roach is definitely a really entertaining writer. Her sense of humour shows in almost every sentence that she writes, and although she takes the subject completely seriously, she is not afraid to point out the ridiculous and amusing aspects of it. She also asks the really important questions - How do toilets work in space? How would people have sex in space and has anybody already tried it? and so on.
I ended up annoying the people that I work with and my husband by constantly saying "Ooooh did you know this?!" every time I read a bit, haha.
I don't really have much else to say about it, but if you are at all interested in space travel and astronauts (I wasn't particularly, but still enjoyed it!), and if you like your non-fiction to entertain you at the same time, then you should definitely read this!
And to end with, a couple (out of hundreds) of quotes that I enjoyed (I read it on my kindle, so no page references):
In a 1960 Civil Aeromedical Research Institute study, squatting on a drop platform caused “severe knee pain” at relatively low G forces. “Apparently the flexor muscles . . . acted as a fulcrum to pry open the knee joint,” the researchers noted with interest and no apparent remorse.
The abdominal organs are packed down into the pelvis like sandbags, the head has sunk down into the shoulders, and I don’t even want to talk about the testicles.
One self-help phobia website helpfully reassures the afflicted that “if you have no plans to travel into space . . . astrophobia may not significantly impact your life.”
I must now go and read all of the other Mary Roach books! (I think there are only two left, BOO!)