The Space Barons by Christian Davenport

The Space Barons

The historic quest to rekindle the human exploration and colonization of space led by two rivals and their vast fortunes, egos, and visions of space as the next entrepreneurial frontierThe Space Barons is the story of a group of billionaire entrepreneurs who are pouring their fortunes into the epic resurrection of the American space program. Nearly a half-century after Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, these Space Barons-most notably Elon Musk a...

Details The Space Barons

TitleThe Space Barons
Release DateMar 20th, 2018
GenreNonfiction, Space, Science, Business, Technology, History, Biography

Reviews The Space Barons

  • Nikki
    I requested this book from Netgalley for a few different reasons. The number one reason being that I’m slightly obsessed with humanity’s scientific journey to attempt to get us in to space. My husband has heard me say more than once that, given the opportunity, I would gladly upend my life and go live on Mars to assist in terraforming. I’ve just always been interested in space, and space exploration and ultimately am a little resentful of t...
  • Dee Arr
    The full title of this book, The Space Barons: Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and the Quest to Colonize the Cosmos, emphasizes the battle between two of the main figures in the book. While I understand the name-dropping can potentially help in selling more copies, I feel it is important to mention others featured in the book: Paul Allen (Microsoft co-founder), Burt Rutan (not a “Baron,” but important for his role), and Sir Richard Branson (Virgin Gro...
  • Chris Via
    The latest iPhone is great, but the real buzz in science and technology is the plight to colonize Mars. Perhaps still too far-fetched for some, the race to be the first commercial shuttle between Earth and Mars is a very real and burgeoning enterprise, with unthinkable funds being expended (and sometimes exploded) along the way. Recent movies and books such as Interstellar (2014), The Martian (2011; 2014), and The Terranauts (2016) have begun to ...
  • Missy
    Space Barons failed to capture my interest in the long run. The initial chapters about Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos weren't well organized, but they had enough interesting bits that I kept coming back to the book. When Burt Rutan's story was introduced, however, the author lost me. Mr. Davenport followed the same patten too many times: tell a bit of a story, introduce a new character, swing back in time to fill in some history of the character, then ...
  • Francis Tapon
    My wife is from Cameroon so she thrilled that the first creature that America sent into orbit was from Cameroon.The creature was named Enos. He was a chimp from Cameroon. He flew aboard the Mercury-Atlas 5 on November 29, 1961. Enos logged three hours and 21 minutes in space. He paved the way for the first American orbital flight just three months later.I’m a fan of space exploration and astronomy. I’m a even bigger fan of the privatization o...
  • Mal Warwick
    Not long ago, I reviewed Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance, and The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone. Both books are well done. They're the product of professional journalists who are good at what they do. But neither book comes close to Christian Davenport's superb new book, The Space Barons: Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and the Quest to Colonize the Cosmos, in offerin...
  • Gary Moreau
    This book is a thorough and professional review of the current state of space flight in the US. As the cover promises, it’s a tale filled with the current rock stars of capitalism: Musk, Bezos, Branson, et al. And a few names that have made history but aren’t quite as familiar: Burt Rutan, Mike Melvill, and a host of others.It’s a book of tales, not technology, and that’s great for most readers. And the stories and subplots are magnificen...
  • Kristiana
    Space barons is a good compiling of the separate space ventures and companies currently in the business. It has a narrow focus, which is wise. I have not yet tired of hearing of spacex’s success, ingenuity, can do spirit or Elon musk’s biting charm and brazenness. Davenport’s approach fills in the gaps for me on what is going on in the different companies and how they came to be.I can’t imagine this is a satisfying read for someone who is...
  • Nick
    This is a really fascinating look into the world of the space industry. The author focuses on four main companies that started in the US in the early 2000s, which I found to be very interesting. While SpaceX has acquired a lot of fame in the past few years, I was surprised by how far back it went and how long it took to get to this point. The author also helped shine a light on some lesser-known companies like Blue Origin.Although the US-Russia s...
  • Yukari Watanabe
    It's a comprehensive book about new space business created by billionaires. Davenport understands the passion of these billionaires, and that made this nonfiction enjoyable to read. Before I write a review for Newsweek Japan, I'm reading a similar new book, "Rocket Billionaires" to compare with this book.
  • Karen
    TEAM ELON. That is all.
  • Alf
    A good summary of the new space movement. If you're a space nerd and have been following the industry closely you won't find much new information here. Also if you love the technical aspects of space travel this book will not satisfy you. It mainly covers Musk and Bezos and the race between them, with some focus also on Branson and Paul Allen. All in all an ok read, but those looking for new information will be disappointed
  • George Siehl
    I watched an interview with author Christian Davenport on the events section of www. and decided to read the book. Good decision. Davenport, a writer for the Washington Post on space and defense issues, faced the delicate challenge of writing about the man who owns the newspaper, Jeff Bezos (of Amazon fame), and Bezos' space business rival, Elon Musk. There are other deep pocketed space entrepreneurs in the cast, as well. Paul Allen and ...
  • Dan S
    Davenport provides here a history of the burgeoning private space industry in the US, with the primary narrative focus on the rivalry between Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk.Although the author acknowledges his affiliations with the Washington Post (owned by Bezos) and claims to be impartial, I found his portrayal of his boss was pretty obvious in its favouritism. One example: when he writes about the lawsuit Musk filed against Bezos in 2014 for his att...
  • Alex Devero
    The Space Barons offers the reader a sneak peek into how some of the world's wealthiest individuals are commercializing space. It shows how these individuals are competing against each other, in a good sense, in the race to be the leaders of the emerging space industry. This book is full of interesting and insightful stories mapping the creation of space companies such as SpaceX (Elon Musk), Virgin Galactic (Richard Branson) and Blue Origin (Jeff...
  • Denise Morse
    The Space Barons is an inside look at the efforts to commercialize space and the race to be the leaders again in space flight. Of course I had heard of SpaceX and watched the YouTube videos, I had heard of Virgin Galactic, but am ashamed to say that I had no idea about Blue Origin and Jeff Bezo's role in the race. The race is on, the setbacks have been real, the costs have been high but progress is being made. It is a fascinating read, especially...
  • Vincent Archer
    A quick and enjoyable read on the big 3 (4 really, but no one hears anything about Allen).If anything is going to define the 21st century, it's probably the rise of the commercial human space sector. We're still in the early stages, and none of the titular Space Barons have done it yet, but commercial-fueled manned space operations are coming, and you have a few colorful personalities to thank for that. This book is a quick summary of the short h...
  • Charlotte
    An enjoyable and enlightening read, but the repetition becomes a little tedious. I learned some new things, even as a former "expert" in this field; however, some of the facts mentioned in the book are completely unverifiable, or at least I've failed to find them online. I've tweeted the author to ask questions (like, where did he get the word "stickiction?" What does it mean? His book is the only instance of it found. What chemical did Blue Orig...
  • Karthik
    Christian did a great job writing this book. It follow Blue Origin, SpaceX, and Virgin Galactic. He also talks about Paul Allen's efforts too. It was a quick read, and kept my attention. I have some serious respect for Blue Origin now. Musk and Bezos have a very different approaches, and this book explains their motivations. The fundamental difference between Blue and SpaceX? SpaceX needs to earn money to survive. They need to launch commercial s...
  • Chris
    If you are picking up this book, I suspect you are a space enthusiast. You’ll love the book! If you are not a space enthusiast but admire the Billionaire Barons fueling the new golden age of space ... you’ll also enjoy the book. The author does a great job of weaving together the stories of the people at the forefront of a new space race. I also came away with much more admiration for the Blue Origin approach. It’s an exciting time to be al...
  • Howard
    This was a good book with some nice details that I had not heard before. But, and it is an important but, the author's employer becomes obvious the closer to the end of the book that you get. Mr. Davenport works for the Washington Post and clearly is not going to say anything negative about Blue Origin. Parts of the book read as marketing material for Blue. The tortoise and hare metaphor is inappropriate and critical analysis of what the separate...
  • Andrew Hyde
    An illuminating ride through the first 15 years of the private sector debut in outer space. It is at once a good insight into the personalities with an appropriate dollop of technical information to ground the reader’s understanding of the significance of the accomplishments and progress made by the space entrepreneurs or main protagonists. It could have benefited by some international perspective on what is happening in other countries.
  • Orest Bodnar
    Great insights into the history of high-profile billionaires pursing their dreams and spending their money on rockets. Would have been nice if he contrasted their pursuits with the likes of Bill Gates and his pursuit to make a better world by donating much of his fortune to charity. A little repetitive at times. Also, largely avoids telling the stories of non-billionaire run private companies pursing space exploration (like Orbital Sciences). But...
  • Chris
    This is about the shift of space travel and to some extent space exploration to private corporations and away from governments. The author does a good job of introducing the people who are behind the private sector push to fill the void left by decreasing NASA budgets and ever-changing priorities by different administrations for space exploration. I would like to read more about Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Richard Branson, and the others mentioned in ...
  • Larry
    Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Not so heavy on the science behind the quest. A brief biography on how a few billionaires put the figurative rocket up the USA space program (or lack thereof) and opened the door for the privatization of space travel. Certainly has put each launch to the space station into perspective.
  • Victoria
    Thanks to Perseus Books, Public Affairs and Netgalley for the ARC of this fantastic non-fiction work. Admittedly, I am a bit of a space geek, but I don’t think you have to be to enjoy this. The new space race competition by 21st century billionaires is fascinating and exciting. The writing was very good, the pace was perfect.
  • Peter O'Kelly
    A related review by Walter Isaacson: article adapted from the book:
  • Jen
    Good synopsis of the commercial players in the aerospace industry right now. Narrative nonfiction style, it takes you through SpaceX, Blue Origin and ULA and the incredible differences between these companies. I liked Bezos, but I am enamored with Musk’s brazenness. Enjoyable but without specifics of rocket building!
  • Baron Sekiya
    A good read about the beginnings of the privatized space industry. The last part of the book will never be satisfying since the industry is moving so fast it makes the end seem dated. Still great background on the industry.
  • Michael
    BreathlessI was bo n in ‘58, and the Mercury, a Gemini, and Apollo astronauts became my heroes.Now I have deed to that list.Fabulous read.Keep dreaming ... and as Snoopy already said: “Ad Astra!” :)