Your Ticket to the Universe

A Guide to Exploring the Cosmos, by Kimberly Arcand & Megan Watzke (Smithsonian Books, 2013)

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The sky belongs to everyone. That’s the premise of this guidebook to the Universe. You don’t need a medical degree to know when you’re sick or a doctorate in literature to appreciate a novel. In the same spirit, even those of us who don’t have advanced degrees in astronomy can gain access to the wonder and experience that our Universe has to offer.


The goal of this book is to get you cosmically oriented for your own exploration, guiding you through the Universe, step by step, with pictures along the way to show where we’re going and to point out must-see sights that no celestial traveler should miss. We’ll start our journey locally on Earth, hit our favorite star (the Sun, that is), head out through our Solar System, and then travel far, far beyond it.



"A delightful jaunt through space and time, equal parts knowing verve and dazzling views.”

-Dan Vergano, USA TODAY.   More reviews/endorsements.



Your Ticket to the Universe is now available from Smithsonian BooksVisit Barnes & Noble, Amazon.com or IndieBound to order.



Recent events include talks, book signings and radio programs. Please visit the events page for more.


Pictured Above (Clockwise from left):  Earth & Moon, Saturn, 30 Doradus, and Abell 3376. View other images featured in the book.  Right: Authors Kim Arcand (left) and Megan Watzke (right) at a book signing at the National Air & Space Museum in Washington DC.