I fondled a copy of the limited-run Taschen release of Moonfire by Norman Mailer when it first came out last year. It was the most visually luscious print homage to space I've ever seen (or groped). Come to blog of it, Moonfire may be the most beautiful books I've ever seen, period. It's surely the only one available in with its own piece of lunar rock (and a print signed by Dr. Buzz Aldrin).
Problem is, the original limited-edition version cost $1,000 (and what copies remain sell online in some places for $1,500). But great news for space junkies this week: Taschen has released a smaller version for $39.99 with the same page count, same content. It's part of the publisher's 30th anniversary "Golden Book" line. And greater still, I'm seeing them offered on Amazon for $26. No moon rock, no Buzz signature, but something I can afford to put on my shelf (and will).
Above, a detail of my favorite photograph in Moonfire: Neil Armstrong prepares for launch on March 16, 1966, in the Gemini VIII cockpit (courtesy NASA). Isn't that just a perfect, beautiful portrait? God I love that image so much.