The Martian

Five Stars

Title: The Martian

Author: Andy Weir

Publisher: Broadway Books

Length: 387 Pages

Synopsis:

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, he won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first.

But Mark isn’t ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?

Overall Review:

I should just start out this review by exposing the fact that I’m a hard-core space fan. And since this book takes place in space and on Mars, it’s right up my alley. And I can’t even begin to describe how much I love it.

It follows the journey of NASA astronaut Mark Watney and his mishaps on the planet Mars. It’s a survival story in all the best ways, and it’s everything you could want in an adventure/science fiction book.

One of my favorite things about this book is the main character. Watney, despite being presumed dead and left on Mars by his crewmates, has the best attitude and sense of human. He’s a problem solver, and while he does show appropriate emotion (fear, dread, hatred of Mars, frustration, excitement, etc.), he’s everything I’ve ever imagined an astronaut being. He’s resourceful and funny.

The plotline was fantastic. Weir threw conflict after conflict at Watney, and as he struggled to stay alive and science his way through his predicament, it was fun to watch him grow and evolve as a character. The book was based in science- the numbers and elements were all accurate and vetted by NASA scientists (or so I’ve read). It’s about a mission gone wrong and the reality of working really hard to fix a myriad of life-threatening issues.

I can’t say enough good things about this book. I definitely recommend it to anyone interested in science. It’s not a sci-fi book with ray guns and aliens- it’s based on fact and is a gripping story of survival against all odds.

Highlights:

  • Great character development
  • Exciting plot and twists
  • Plenty of conflict for the main character to work through
  • Hilarious- even amongst the huge challenges going on in the story
  • Narration was spot on
  • Science was sound- author did his homework and it was very realistic

Lowlights:

  • A lot of language
  • Science heavy (I love this, but I totally know not everyone does)

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