Month by month, star by star, object by object, Stephen James O'Meara takes readers on a celestial journey to many of the most prominent stars and constellations visible from mid-northern latitudes. Filled with interesting anecdotes about the stars and constellations and their intriguing histories, this book is both a useful guide for amateur astronomers, and a great first-time reference for those just starting out. After describing a constellation's mythology, readers are guided in locating and identifying its brightest stars in the sky, as well as any other bright targets of interest - colourful stars, double or multiple stars, star clusters and asterisms, nebulae, galaxies, variable stars, and more. This book will help beginning stargazers become familiar with the stars and constellations visible from their backyards, and explore the brightest and best stars, nebulae, and clusters visible through inexpensive, handheld binoculars.
Stephen James O'Meara spent much of his career on the editorial staff of Sky & Telescope. He is a columnist and contributing editor for Astronomy magazine and a world-renowned science popularizer. For his many outstanding achievements in astronomy, including the visual recovery of Halley's comet in 1985, pre-Voyager visual discovery of the spokes in Saturn's B-ring, and being the first to determine visually the rotation period of Uranus, the International Astronomical Union named asteroid 3637 O'Meara in his honor. Steve is also the recipient of the Caroline Herschel Award, as well as the prestigious Lone Stargazer Award (2001) and the Omega Centauri Award (1994) for 'his efforts in advancing astronomy through observation, writing, and promotion, and for sharing his love of the sky.' Steve was a long-time contributing editor and consultant for Odyssey, an award-winning children's science magazine. He is also a contract videographer for National Geographic Digital Motion, specializing in volcanic eruptions.