The first generation of interferometric ground-based gravitational-wave detectors, LIGO and Virgo, are currently taking data at their highest sensitivities to date. Within a decade, their advanced versions will likely be able to make routine detections of mergers of compact binaries composed of neutron stars or stellar-mass black holes. I will briefly review some of the prospects and challenges of the emerging field of gravitational-wave astronomy. I will focus on the difficult task of astrophysical predictions of detection rates. I will also discuss some of the exciting science that will be enabled through the new window onto the universe which will be opened up by gravitational-wave observations.