Books·Canadian

An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth

In his first book, Chris Hadfield offers readers extraordinary stories from his life as an astronaut.

Chris Hadfield

As commander of the International Space Station, Chris Hadfield captivated the world with photos and commentary from space. In his first book, he offers readers extraordinary stories from his life as an astronaut, and shows how to make the impossible a reality. In An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth, Chris gives us a rare insider's perspective on just what that kind of thinking involves and how earthbound humans can use it to achieve success and happiness in their lives.

Written with humour, humility and a profound optimism for the future of space exploration, An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth offers readers not just the inspiring story of one man's journey to the ISS, but the opportunity to step into his space-boots and think like an astronaut — and renew their commitment to pursuing their own dreams, big or small. (From Random House Canada)

Read an excerpt | Author interviews | More about this book

From the book

One morning a strange thought occurs to me shortly after waking: the socks I am about to put on are the ones I'll wear to leave Earth. That prospect feels real yet surreal, the way a particularly vivid dream does. The feeling intensifies at breakfast, when reporters jostle each other to get a good photo, as though I'm a condemned man and this is my last meal. Similarly, a little later on, when the technicians help me into my custom-made spacesuit for pressure checks, the joviality feels forced. It's the moment of truth. The suit needs to function perfectly - it is what will keep me alive and able to breathe if the spacecraft depressurizes in the vacuum of space - because this isn't a run-through.

I am actually leaving the planet today.


From An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth by Chris Hadfield ©2013. Published by Random House Canada.

Author interviews

Hadfield talks about the future of the Canadian Space Agency and his new book, An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth 20:32
Chris Hadfield shares his experiences in his new book 8:29
David Bowie praised Chris Hadfield's cover of his iconic song, Space Oddity. The Canadian astronaut shares what that meant to him. 5:43

More about this book

Canada's singing astronaut talks about creating music on the International Space Station 2:40