Your Ticket to the Universe -- A Review

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Take a trip across the Universe with this new book from Smithsonian Books

Kimberly K. Arcand and Megan Watzke believe that space is for everyone.

Over the past decade they have created award-winning exhibitions, events and writings that expose new audiences to its wonders. Arcand and Watzke have received international accolades for their unparalleled ability to translate scientific discoveries into accessible information for everyone… and they continue this mission with Your Ticket to the Universe: a Guide to Exploring the Cosmos, an astronomy book that delivers detailed information with a lighthearted, conversational tone.

“The sky belongs to everyone. That’s the premise of this guidebook to the Universe. You don’t need a medical degree to know when you’re sick or a doctorate in literature to appreciate a novel. In the same spirit, even those of us who don’t have advanced degrees in astronomy can gain access to all the wonder and experience that the Universe has to offer.”
Your Ticket to the Universe features hundreds of images from the world’s most advanced observatories (KPNO)

PHOTOS: Hubble’s Latest Mind Blowing Cosmic Pictures

Your Ticket to the Universe takes readers on a voyage across the cosmos through stunning images and detailed, descriptive text that’s fun to read. There are stops at the most fascinating astronomical landmarks, both within our own Solar System as well as deeper into the galaxy — and even to the very edges of the visible Universe itself.

Arcand and Watzke — both members of NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory team at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics – use interesting “cocktail party” tidbits as well as analogies to everyday experiences to keep the information educational but easily relatable. Ultimately, Your Ticket to the Universe is a science book that remains highly readable for non-scientists because of the authors’ skill at explaining complex concepts in simple yet accurate terms.

And, of course, the images will simply blow your mind.

The center of the Milky Way as seen by Hubble, Spitzer and Chandra (NASA)

PHOTOS: Ten Cosmic Stunners to Point Your New Telescope At

Every page of Your Ticket to the Universe features images from a space exploration mission or talented photographer, all hand-picked by Arcand and Watzke for their illustration of a science topic as well as their sheer beauty. This book will not only teach readers about the cosmos, but it will also remind them of its majesty, scale, and splendor — and how we fit into it all.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who’s fascinated by the Universe. It makes an excellent addition to any space library.

Your Ticket to the Universe will be available starting April 2 at Smithsonian Books, and it can now be pre-ordered at Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.com.

Watch a video teaser for Your Ticket to the Universe here.

Image credit: Smithsonian Books, NASA, KPNO