Light This Candle by Neal Thompson
The Life and Times of Alan Shepard

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lan Shepard was the brashest, cockiest, and most flamboyant of America’s original Mercury Seven, but he was also regarded as the best. Intense, colorful, and dramatic—the man who hit a golf ball on the moon—he was among the most private of America’s public figures and, until his death in 1998, he guarded the story of his life zealously.

Light This Candle, based on Neal Thompson’s exclusive access to private papers and interviews with Shepard’s family and closest friends—including John Glenn, Wally Schirra, and Gordon Cooper—offers a riveting, action-packed account of Shepard’s life. Among the first men to fly off aircraft carriers, he was one of the most fearless test pilots. He endured long separations from his devoted wife and three daughters to fly dangerous missions, working his way up the ranks despite clashes with authority over his brazen flying maneuvers and penchant for risky pranks. Hugely competitive, he beat out John Glenn for the first Mercury spaceflight and then overcame a rare illness to return to space again on Apollo 14.

He took every challenge head-on and seemed to win every time.

Long overdue, Light This Candle is a candid and inspiring account of a bold American life.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Neal Thompson

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NEAL THOMPSON is the critically acclaimed author of Light This Candle, Driving with the Devil, and Hurricane Season and has contributed to such publications as Outside, Esquire, and Sports Illustrated. He lives in Seattle with his wife and two sons. You can find him at
Published December 18, 2007 by Crown. 576 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Science & Math. Non-fiction

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I started reading non-fiction accounts of the early days of the Space Age, and I've enjoyed most all of them. Light this Candle

Apr 12 2005 | Read Full Review of Light This Candle: The Life a...

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