Monday, April 14, 2014

Book Review: The Martian by Andy Weir

From Goodreads:
Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first men to walk on the surface of Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first man to die there.

It started with the dust storm that holed his suit and nearly killed him, and that forced his crew to leave him behind, sure he was already dead. Now he's stranded millions of miles from the nearest human being, with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive--and even if he could get word out, his food would be gone years before a rescue mission 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 get 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. But will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?
Writing
I can't believe how lucky I've been this year on picking up books with excellent writing.  I feel like my resolution to go back to what I love instead of what I feel like I need to accept for review is really serving me well.  This is one I heard the Book Riot folks raving about, and I trust them, so I grabbed it when I saw it on the FLP website.

It is just stunning.  Weir has found the perfect balance between heart-stopping tension, humor, and sciencey goodness (yes, that is a technical term).  It's a survival story and an adventure story, but it's set on MARS.  Space survival.  I can't rave enough about how well done this is.  I was hooked from the first page, but it never got so dark that it was depressing or so light that it didn't feel believable.  And it had just the right amount of the technology Watney needs to survive without overloading the reader with jargon.

Entertainment Value
I was entranced from the first page.  If any book deserves to be made into a movie, this is the one.  One of my biggest fears is space.  Being trapped in space, totally alone, with no way to get home?  Just the thought makes me clench my teeth.  It's just terrifying.  I will stay right here on Earth, thank you very much.  But reading about someone facing my biggest fear?  Perfection.  Luke can tell you, I couldn't get enough of this book.  It's one that had me flipping pages in a panic and staying up late at night to finish.

Overall
Please quit everything you're doing and go read this book.  It's amazing and I can't recommend it highly enough.

1 comment:

  1. I've seen the cover of this book in more than a few places. Might try to get it in audiobook.

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