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About the book
  • Published: 17 January 2013
  • ISBN: 9781448126910
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 352

A Down to Earth Guide to the Cosmos




A comprehensive guide to the night sky for stargazers and amateur astronomers of all ages, from Stargazing LIVE presenter Mark Thompson

To the beginner, the star-filled sky at night can seem as mysterious and unfathomable as it was to our distant ancestors. But with this book as a guide, the awesome nature of the Cosmos is brought down to Earth.

Learning about the Universe requires two distinct areas of focus: understanding the physical nature of the processes and objects amongst the stars and the ability to find objects and navigate around the sky. Mark Thompson's book combines these two areas in a unique and engaging way, taking the reader in just twelve chapters on the same journey that has taken mankind thousands of years.

The twelve chapters of the book represent the twelve months of the year and each chapter will tackle an astronomical concept, such as how our view of the night sky has changed over the centuries, drawing on real objects in the sky to illustrate the point. Each chapter will be further broken down into three sections; a narrative which covers the concept, followed by a quick guide to the stars of the northern hemisphere for the that month and then those in the southern hemisphere.

As fascinating as it is accessible, Mark Thompson's book is a must for anyone who gazes up at the sky at night and wishes they knew more about the final frontier...

  • Pub date: 17 January 2013
  • ISBN: 9781448126910
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 352

About the Author

Mark Thompson

Mark ‘Bomber’ Thompson played 202 games for Essendon Football Club from 1983 to 1996 under legendary coach Kevin Sheedy. He captained the side for four seasons. Thompson played in three premierships in 1984, 1985 and 1993 alongside some characters and champions in an era where footy was a game, not a brand.

After a stint as an assistant coach at Essendon and then at North Melbourne under Denis Pagan, Thompson sold his electrical business and became the senior coach of the Geelong Football Club, where he seized the opportunity to combine his own ideas about footy and management with what he’d learnt from Sheedy and Pagan. After surviving a major review of his football department in 2006, Thompson coached the greatest team of all to the club’s drought-breaking premiership in 2007, then took them to another flag in 2009. In November 2010 he left Geelong, burnt out but leaving the legacy of a winning culture. He returned to Essendon as senior assistant coach to James Hird in 2011, and was then appointed senior coach for the 2014 season when Hird was suspended. He left Essendon at the end of 2014 and is now a panelist on Fox Footy.

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Praise for A Down to Earth Guide to the Cosmos

“Mark is a wonderful promoter of Astronomy. He's tremendously knowledgeable about the geography of the night sky, guiding the experienced amateur and complete novice with equal skill and passion.”

Professor Brian Cox

“An admirably clear and concise guide to the wonders of the night sky, which will give anyone with a hankering to rise above the humdrum a toehold in the heavens. This is a book to get people started, whether keen amateurs or clueless professionals.”

Marcus Chown, New Scientist

“I was captivated... a thoroughly good read. I wholeheartedly recommend A Down To Earth Guide... as an entertaining, exciting read, but also as solid reference material for any amateur astronomer.”

Ian O'Neill, Discovery Space

“This book alone would be a good start for any budding Patrick Moore.”

Engineering and Technology Magazine

“Mark Thompson’s book tackles what most imagine to be a very complicated topic, opening up a whole new area of our universe in the most simple and straightforward manner. The reader is given a fascinating insight into our night sky and anyone who reads it will find themselves standing outside staring into that dark and deep abyss.”

We Love This Book

“A fantastic book that's perfect for both those interested in the science of the stars and those looking to do some observing themselves. Wonderfully written and accessible to astronomers of all ages and levels. This brilliant book is definitely worth picking up.”

All About Space


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