Astronauts remain in the spaceship, while spacewalkers step out into the universe. In Canadian Spacewalkers (Douglas & McIntyre, 2015) science journalist Bob McDonald interviews Canada's three legendary Canadian astronauts who have achieved spacewalker status: Chris Hadfield, Steve MacLean and Dave Williams. Their one-on-one accounts detail the extreme mental and physical demands of training and describe the out-of-this-world experience of taking a spacewalk.

The book was shortlisted for the 2014 Lane Anderson Award, which honours the best science writing in Canada. Canadian Spacewalkers was previously shortlisted for the Canadian Science Writers' Association's Science in Society General Book Award.

From publicity materials: McDonald, who has received simulator training, "shares his own experiences with astronaut training: the almost-reality of simulators, the sensory deprivation of the spacesuit, and even a zero-g airplane ride where he experiences the wonder and giddiness of floating weightless.";

Bob McDonald was born in Wingham, Ontario, in 1951 and grew up in Orillia. He went to university and studied the arts, but his heart was with science. While working as a truck driver he applied to work at Toronto's Ontario Space Centre and thanks to his enthusiasm, was hired on the spot. Since 1992, he has hosted CBC Radio's Quirks and Quarks, where he simplifies complex scientific concepts for listeners. McDonald is the author of four best-selling science books and has received numerous awards and accolades, including: the Queens Jubilee Medal, the Michael Smith Award, the Sir Sanford Fleming Medal, the McNeil Medal, and eight honourary doctorate degrees. In November of 2011, he was named to the Order of Canada. Motorcycles are one of his passions, and he has owned 15 of them (so far). McDonald recently left his longtime home of Toronto to settle on the west coast in Victoria, BC.


Canadian Spacewalkers: Hadfield, MacLean and Williams Remember the Ultimate High Adventure (Douglas & McIntyre, 2015) $29.95 978-1-77162-044-4

[BCBW 2015] "space" "aviation"