Red Moon Rising: Sputnik and the Hidden Rivalries That Ignited the Space Age



"In his exuberant narrative of the superpower space race . . . [Brzezinski] tells the story of American and Soviet decisions with remarkable dramatic--even cinematic--flair."--The New York Times Book Review

In Red Moon Rising, Matthew Brzezinski recounts the dramatic behind-the-scenes story of the fierce battles on earth that preceded and followed the launch of Sputnik on October 4, 1957. He takes us inside the Kremlin, the White House, secret military facilities, deep-cover safe houses, and the halls of Congress to bring to life the Russians and Americans who feared and distrusted their compatriots at least as much as their superpower rivals.

Drawing on original interviews and new documentary sources, Brzezinski tells a story rich in the paranoia of the time. The combatants include three U.S. presidents, survivors of the gulag, corporate chieftains, ambitious apparatchiks, rehabilitated Nazis, and a general who won the day by refusing to follow orders. The true story of the birth of the space age has never been told in such dramatic detail, and Red Moon Rising brings it vividly and memorably to life.

Product Details

Price: $24.00  $21.60
Publisher: St. Martins Press-3PL
Published Date: August 05, 2008
Pages: 332
Dimensions: 5.9 X 1.0 X 8.9 inches | 1.05 pounds
Language: English
Type: Paperback
ISBN: 9780805088588
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About the Author

Matthew Brzezinski is a former Moscow correspondent for The Wall Street Journal and has reported extensively on homeland-security issues for The New York Times Magazine and other publications. He is the author of Casino Moscow: A Tale of Greed and Adventure on Capitalism's Wildest Frontier and Fortress America: On the Front Lines of Homeland Security.


"In our fear of terrorist attacks, we forget there was an even more panicky time--when Russia's Sputnik first sped across the night sky in October 1957, signaling that the Soviet Union could launch nuclear-tipped missiles at the United States. By plumbing Russian as well as American sources, Matthew Brzezinski has given us a vivid, insightful account of that paranoid age." --Evan Thomas, author of Sea of Thunder and coauthor of The Wise Men

"Matthew Brzezinski's Red Moon Rising fills a significant hole in our understanding of the Cold War. Using the Sputnik launch as his centerpiece, Brzezinski brilliantly flashes back and forth between Washington, D.C., and Moscow. A truly gripping, important book." --Douglas Brinkley, author of The Great Deluge and The Boys of Pointe du Hoc

"Matthew Brzezinski's reportorial skills and smooth writing propel the narrative forward at the perfect pitch. Red Moon Rising is a combustibly entertaining mixture of scientific daring, politics, Cold War duels, and big-time personalities." --Neal Bascomb, author of Red Mutiny

"Matthew Brzezinski has crafted a dazzling account of the people and events that led to the world's first earth satellite. It is one of the most important stories of the twentieth century, and Brzezinski tells it supremely well. His account not only tells us how the Russians did it, but how the Americans, bewildered at first, finally got going with their own space program. It is historical storytelling at its finest, and I thoroughly enjoyed every page. In a word: Prodigious!" --Homer Hickam, author of Rocket Boys (October Sky)

"Brzezinski is a wonderfully colourful writer, combining a scientific plotline with the history and characters of a Cold War thriller." --The Times (London)

"Fascinating and highly revealing . . . Riveting history, dramatically told." --The Philadelphia Inquirer