The Search for Life on Mars: The Greatest Scientific Detective Story of All Time


Product Details

$27.99  $25.75
Arcade Publishing
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.1 X 1.6 inches | 1.45 pounds

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About the Author

Elizabeth Howell, PhD, is one of the few people who has lived on a simulated Mars base. An award-winning journalist, she regularly contributes to, Forbes, and SkyNews. She witnessed five human space launches--three from Florida and two from Kazakhstan. She also pretended to be a Red Planet astronaut in 2014, on Crew 133 of the Mars Society's Mars Desert Research Station in Utah. Elizabeth holds an undergraduate degree in journalism from Carleton University and two postgraduate degrees in space studies from the University of North Dakota. She lives with her husband in Ottawa, Canada.

Nicholas Booth worked for Astronomy Now magazine, wrote about science for British newspapers, and was a technology editor on The Times (London). He is the author of true-life detective stories about spies and fraudsters, including Zigzag: The Incredible Wartime Exploits of Double Agent Eddie Chapman, published by Arcade, and The Thieves of Threadneedle Street. He lives in Cheshire, England, with his wife and their two cats.


"The search [for life on Mars] retains an irresistible fascination, and this enthusiastic account brings readers up to date."--Kirkus Reviews

"This book is a captivating, behind-the-scenes view of scientists and engineers on the frontlines of opening up the Red Planet to breakthrough discoveries . . . and still puzzling observations. The authors have written a remarkable, timely, and up-to-date account of Mars exploration.More importantly, this milestone book is a guidepost of things to come and the next steps needed to purge that distant globe of its stealthy truths."--Leonard David,'s "Space Insider" columnist and author of Moon Rush: The New Space Race

"As a career-long employee of NASA, and one deeply involved in human space exploration, I found this book filling a void in my understanding and adding to my appreciation for the true scientists and leaders of NASA's extraordinary Mars exploration programs.The Search for Life on Mars is an extremely fascinating book, weaving together our history of studying the Red Planet and hopes of discovering life there with the details of those missions as told by the people who actually did the work. It left me wanting a quicker answer to that age-old question. Any casual fan of Earth's Mars exploration programs should read this book. All true students of these fantastic endeavors will devour this book."--Mike Leinbach, Shuttle Launch Director, retired, and coauthor of Bringing Columbia Home

"The Search for Life on Mars is a time machine, rushing readers into the Red Planet's past while providing a window into current and future explorations. From the lingering residue of a former magnetic field to the rolled stones that point to Mars' aquatic era, Elizabeth Howell and Nicholas Booth bring light to Earthwide research, exposing the building blocks of life present in and on the ground of our nearest neighbor. In a way that is clear to the novice but still refreshing for an expert, they show that there is a glimmer of hope -- that we may not alone in our the solar system, not to mention the universe."--Allendria Brunjes, editor, SkyNews

"Exhilarating, frustrating, tantalizing, surprising, rewarding, confounding--Mars has emotionally whipsawed planetary scientists since Mariner 4's first close look at the planet in 1965. The Search for Life on Mars takes us through the painstaking process of focusing our robotic explorations to unravel the mystery of whether life ever took a foothold on Mars. It's a question we may finally see answered in the next decade, and one which helps us appreciate even more fully how life and Earth evolved together."--Jonathan H. Ward, Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society and coauthor of Bringing Columbia Home