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Book Review: Objects in the Heavens

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#1 Olivier Biot

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 03:26 PM

Book Review: Objects in the Heavens

By John Kramer.

#2 hyia


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Posted 27 March 2012 - 05:23 PM

Thank you for a nice summary of this little guide. I first got it when I was doing binocular astronomy and it is still my most used guide. I often take just it out with me despite the fact that I don't use a "goto" mount. If I need more help finding objects, I have the PSA as well. If I want to know more detail about something, I have Burnham's. So,this guide is good to get me pointed in directions to investigate further.

I can tell you also that I had the opportunity to e-mail Mr. Birren some time ago, and he seems to be a very nice person who has an honest enthusiasm for his work. In fact, he e-mailed the *.pdf version of this guide at no cost just so I could have the couple of pages covering the moon which were not in the previous edition.

#3 desertstars



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Posted 27 March 2012 - 06:49 PM

Good review. :waytogo:

I keep a copy of this book in my equipment case, for those times when I've worked whatever list I brought out and still have time and/or energy left on a given night. The book deserves the recommendations it so frequently receives.

#4 buddyjesus



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Posted 27 March 2012 - 08:07 PM

Great reference. If I didn't already have most of this information provided to me with Palm Planetarium, this would be the one reference in my observing satchel. I do keep an earlier edition in the garage just in case though. Sometimes I forget to charge it. haha

#5 AlBoning


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Posted 28 March 2012 - 05:26 AM

I ordered my copy directly from the author. Not only did it come autographed (Happy Viewing!) but it appears that a mis-print was hand corrected. The entry for M13 had the number of stars (100,000) changed to 300,000. A thoughtful and considerate gesture.

This book is turning out to be a lot more useful than I first imagined. Tonight I was using it to observe in three constellations (Draco, Canes Venatici, and Bootes) I'd not observed in before and Hercules. It doesn't disappoint.

#6 Ragaisis


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Posted 28 March 2012 - 08:34 AM

I reviewed an earlier version of this book a while back. Mr. Birren saw the review, let me know that I'd reviewed an older version and took some of my comments to heart when he made the current one. Now THAT'S customer service! It's a great reference and I keep 2 copies - 1 in the car and one with my equipment case. It's that good.

#7 tomchris


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Posted 30 March 2012 - 02:04 PM

One of the best night sky references around!!!

#8 Scott in NC

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 05:45 AM

One of the best night sky references around!!!

I agree with this statement. Thanks so much for providing the great review. I bought one of these a couple months ago, and have used it extensively. This guide combined with S&Ts Pocket Sky Atlas and a monthly star chart from S&T or printed from skymaps.com is really all I need for most nights. :grin:

#9 lcaldero


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Posted 31 March 2012 - 02:30 PM

I received my copy from Peter yesterday, haven't used it under the stars yet but it's obvious that it's a labor of lvoe by an experienced observer. If you decide you want a copy, order from Peter to be sure that you get the 5th ed. I ordered from Amazon and they sent me the 4th edition -- after I contacted them, they sent me another copy -- of the 4th edition. I am glad I held out for the 5th ed, because the moon observing section is really helpful (and new to the 5th ed).

#10 Scott in NC

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Posted 31 March 2012 - 04:10 PM

If you decide you want a copy, order from Peter to be sure that you get the 5th ed.

Yeah, definitely order it directly from Peter Birren through his website. He'll even personally autograph it for you if you want!

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