This book explores the story of Yuri Gagarin, who is about to make history in 1961.Travelling at almost 18,000 miles per hour, Gagarin circles the globe in just 106 minutes. He is the first human to leave the planet and is about to become famous back on earth. The book covers Gagarin’s life and his background.

His epic flight took place at the height of the cold war. Both USA and USSR took risks to claim the spoils of the first man in space. Both countries trained astronauts and the space race was very competitive. We get to see the differences between Korolev and von Braun. There is also a lot of interesting information about the Soviet programme.

The book is detailed and we get glimpses of life behind the iron curtain with testimony from eyewitnesses, many for the first time. The details of Gagarin are excellent and it’s almost like you know him as a friend by the end of the book.
The author, Stephen Walker is an award winning filmmaker and bestselling author and his extensive research has paid dividends.

I found this story very interesting and hard to put down. The author is able to share the excitement and terror of Gagarin’s flight. It’s great to read about what happened after the flight as well.

Many people dream of going to space and this book is inspiring and I loved reading what happened behind the scenes of arguably the most exciting decade of the space race.