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Terence Dickinson.

Camden East (ON), Camden House, c1983.
Distributed by Firefly.
159pp, paper, spiral bound, $ 17.95.
ISBN 0-920656-26-9.

Grades 9 and up.
Reviewed by Robin Lewis.

Volume 12 Number 5
1984 September

I admit I doubted the claim of Dickinson's prodigious production. Then, on two successive days, magazines with articles by him flipped through my mailbox. I had often enjoyed his work; I had insufficiently appreciated the talents of this writer, teacher, and broadcaster.

His book concisely discusses the constellations, comets, meteors, eclipses, our solar system, and the nature of the universe. (There is nothing on telescope making but see references.) The sections on backyard astronomy and stargazing equipment are good. Read Dickinson's excellent advice before you spend a dollar.

Science and geography students and would-be astronomers will specially enjoy this readable book. The quasi-professional might find it a little elementary, but it does have some unique features. The star charts are cleverly annotated and printed, with star colours, magnitudes, diametres, and other data. Dickinson gives references for further reading as well as a selected list of supply houses. Illustrations range from clear snapshots of equipment, through beautiful shots of the night sky, to a professional image of the churning glory of our own sun. The 10 x 10 inch format (25 x 25cm) permits clear text and tables.

The book is a wonderful blend of craft, art, and scholarship, a joy to use, a pleasure to own. Nightwatch shows why so many reputable sources have accepted eight hundred of Dickinson's articles.

I have just bought a camera mount for my rickety refractor. Excuse me for a moment while I read again what Dickinson has to say about photography...

Robin Lewis, Riverdale H. S., Pierrefonds, QB.
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