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Stephen James O'Meara's Observing the Night Sky with Binoculars
A Simple Guide to the Heavens


  • Date Published: October 2008
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521721707


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About the Authors
  • • Informal, story-telling approach • Star charts, photos, and illustrations • Interesting anecdotes, mythologies, and histories about the stars and constellations • Brightest and best stars, star clusters and asterisms, nebulae, galaxies, variable stars and more! Month by month, star by star, object by object, Stephen James O’Meara takes readers on a celestial journey to many of the most prominent stars and constellations visible from mid-northern latitudes. Filled with interesting anecdotes about the stars and constellations and their intriguing histories, this book is both a useful guide for amateur astronomers, and a great first-time reference for those just starting out. After describing a constellation’s mythology, readers are guided in locating and identifying its brightest stars in the sky, as well as any other bright targets of interest - colorful stars, double or multiple stars, star clusters and asterisms, nebulae, galaxies, variable stars, and more. This book will help beginning stargazers become familiar with the stars and constellations visible from their backyards, and explore the brightest and best stars, nebulae, and clusters visible through inexpensive, handheld binoculars. Steve O'Meara on skywatching with binoculars - Listen to the Podcast interview by EarthSky: About Steve O'Meara Stephen James O’Meara, award-winning visual observer, is columnist and contributing editor for Astronomy magazine and former Eye on the Sky columnist for Sky & Telescope. He is the recipient of the prestigious Caroline Herschel Award, the Lone Stargazer Award, as well as the Omega Centauri Award for “his efforts in advancing astronomy through observation, writing, and promotion, and for sharing his love of the sky.” The International Astronomical Union named asteroid 3637 O’Meara in his honor. As the first to sight Halley’s Comet on its return in 1985, his remarkable skills continually reset the standard of quality for other visual observers. For more exciting titles by O'Meara, please click here.

    • Contains interesting anecdotes about the stars and constellations and their intriguing histories
    • Guides readers in locating and identifying the brightest stars in each constellation, as well as colourful stars, double or multiple stars, star clusters and asterisms, nebulae, galaxies, variable stars, and more
    • A useful guide for amateur astronomers who want to begin observing the night sky with the simplest of equipment
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    "The mythology and history of the stars and other objects are explained in engaging narrative, and the reader is left feeling as though they have truly learned about what they have seen. ...ideal for those who want to know more about astronomical objects easily seen with binoculars." - David Bowley, Astronomy Now

    "The chapters cover all the major binocular deep-sky objects well, but unlike most such guides, the author devotes even more space to star patterns and individual stars. On the whole, I find this refreshing. ... As always, O'Meara's writing is lively, quirky, and infused with his personality." - Tony Flanders, Sky & Telescope

    “[O’Meara] lends depth and richness to the observing experience. His skilled observations and side jaunts to obscure targets give both novice and seasoned skygazers fresh vistas to seek and explore.” – Sky & Telescope on Deep-Sky Companions: The Caldwell Objects

    "Finding your way around the thousands of stars scattered across the night sky is pretty daunting when you're new to astronomy. So a good guide to what you're looking at is crucial to building your foundation as a budding astronomer. [This book] will certainly help you along the way. [O'Meara] relates his invaluable experience as an astronomer, revealing the unique stories and secrets each constellation has to offer, bringing them right down to Earth. O'Meara's writing inspires and his passion and enthusiasm for observing leaps off the pages. ... Armed with O'Meara's book and a pair of binoculars, you'll be hunting for your next mythical beast or hero with no trouble at all." - Vincent Whiteman, Sky at Night Magazine

    "...simple star charts and pictures of nebulae allow the book to double as a valuable supplement to the many free star charts or “planispheres” available online." - Physics World

    "[This book] will have you comfortably cruising the night's starry sphere in no time with its straightforward techniques and handy mnemonics. - Mark Mortimer, Universe Today

    "Whenever Stephen O'Meara comes out with a new book, it's almost an automatic purchase for many amateur astronomers. There's nobody who loves the sky (day and night) and its phenomena more than Stephen, and there's nobody who does a better job describing what he sees in the sky and helping us experience some of the enjoyment that he has." - Bill Pellerin, GuideStar

    " engaging introduction ... O'Meara, a veteran contributor to Astronomy and Sky and Telescope, brings breadth of knowledge, outstanding skills, and a personal voice. Stargazers of all levels can learn from an observer's hard-won wisdom and ability to see with the mind's eye. Those in the field will appreciate the book's cumulative approach, organization by season, and portable format. ... Recommended." - CHOICE

    "There's nobody who loves the sky (day and night) and its phenomena more than Stephen, and there's nobody who does a better job describing what he sees in the sky and helping us experience some of the enjoyment that he has." - GuideStar

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2008
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521721707
    • length: 168 pages
    • dimensions: 297 x 210 x 8 mm
    • weight: 0.5kg
    • contains: 225 b/w illus.
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    To the reader
    The Spring Stars
    1. April
    2. May
    3. June
    The Summer Stars
    4. July
    5. August
    6. September
    The Autumn Stars
    7. October
    8. November
    9. December
    The Winter Stars
    10. January
    11. February
    12. March
    Appendix A. The Constellations
    Appendix B. Nova hunting with binoculars

  • Author

    Stephen James O'Meara

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