Keith Staskiewicz
July 27, 2011 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Sex on the Moon

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Ben Mezrich
publisher
Doubleday
genre
Nonfiction

We gave it an C

Ben Mezrich’s exaggerated style of nonfiction is like catnip to Hollywood; his books have already been the basis for the films 21 and The Social Network. It’s little wonder, then, that Sex on the Moon reads like a novelization of a movie that doesn’t yet exist. The story — featuring the typical Mezrichean protagonist of a brilliant young man with an outlandish scheme — is compelling: He hijacks a 600-pound safe filled with moon rocks from NASA. But Mezrich injects into that outline only the most basic, and strangely excusatory, psychology, as well as a grating sense of manufactured urgency. I’m sure it could still make a good movie, but it isn’t a very good book. C

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