Nightwatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe (Spiral)

Nightwatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe By Terence Dickinson, Ken Hewitt-White, Richard Tresch Fienberg (Foreword by) Cover Image
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As NightWatch, Terence Dickinson's classic stargazing guide, neared its 40th anniversary, Dickinson worked with a small group of trusted colleagues to give this groundbreaking reference an overhaul that will take it deep into the 21st century. Longtime astronomy writer and sky observer Ken Hewitt-White led the editorial team. A central aspect to this new edition is the subtle improvements to the unique seasonal star charts that present a 360-degree simulation of the night sky on one page and identify the stars and constellations on the facing page. Yet it is Dickinson's clear, jargon-free language that will continue to inspire hundreds of thousands of people around the world to take up recreational astronomy.

Much has happened in this popular hobby since the revised Fourth Edition of NightWatch was published in 2006. In response, the text has been substantially revised and updated throughout all 13 chapters. Moreover, the book has been completely redesigned and most of its many photographs have been replaced. A noted feature is the variety of superb astrophotos of star clusters, nebulas, galaxies and other celestial phenomena taken by accomplished amateur astronomers. Lavishly illustrated sections on the Moon and planets will inspire novice observers of the solar system. To accommodate the extensive revisions, NightWatch has grown from 192 pages to 208 pages. With the release of the Fifth Edition, we are also launching a new website,, that will offer links to additional resources and will be regularly updated with information on new celestial events and equipment.

Since the First Edition of NightWatch was released in 1983, the most significant transformations in amateur astronomy have been in optics and technology. For all the latest on gadgets and gear, renowned astrophotographer Alan Dyer, Dickinson's coauthor of The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, has contributed an entirely new chapter on basic digital astrophotography. Dyer has also modernized a key portion of an enlarged chapter on stargazing equipment, creating a welcoming place in NightWatch for today's computerized telescopes.

Stargazing enthusiasts of all levels of experience will discover much of value in an enduring reference conceived by one of the most respected names in amateur astronomy. This must-have Fifth Edition includes:

  • a comprehensive, all-season guide to the night sky
  • constellation charts covering both northern- and southern-hemisphere skies, making NightWatch a truly global resource
  • tips on choosing binoculars and telescopes and taking astrophotos
  • highlights of major features on the Moon to guide the budding lunar explorer
  • lists of solar and lunar eclipses, planet locations and the best lunar and planetary conjunctions to 2035
  • a range of resources for further study.

About the Author

Terence Dickinson, one of Canada's best-loved amateur-astronomy writers, gained renown for unraveling the mysteries of the cosmos. His down-to-earth style made him the award-winning best-selling author of 14 astronomy books, including NightWatch, The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, The Universe and Beyond and Hubble's Universe. The cofounder and former editor of SkyNews, Canada's national astronomy magazine, Dickinson was a recipient of the Order of Canada and two honorary doctorates. He died of complications from Parkinson's on February 1, 2023. Ken Hewitt-White has enjoyed a strong working relationship and friendship with Terence Dickinson for decades, founded on their mutual passion for the night sky. Currently a contributing editor at Sky and Telescope magazine, Hewitt-White was a longtime contributor to SkyNews magazine and the former director of Vancouver's H. R. MacMillan Planetarium. A lecturer and writer, he has authored two books, taught dozens of astronomy courses and written countless articles. Hewitt-White lives with his wife Lynda in southern British Columbia, where they go stargazing in the mountains every summer.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780228104391
ISBN-10: 0228104394
Publisher: Firefly Books
Publication Date: September 7th, 2023
Pages: 208
Language: English