Reviewing this book is a pleasure, because it affords me the opportunity to tell people how much I loved it and why. Which is to say, a LOT. It’s hard to rate so high on my list, but this is easily a 9 out of 10 for me and one of the best books I’ve ever read. It grips you right from the beginning, and you will literally want to put your life on hold while you dive into the awesome adventure of lets-see-how-Mars-tries-to-kill-Mark-Watney-today.
Warning: this book, and consequently this review, has some choice words in it. If you have a problem with potty mouths, blame Andy Weir…not me.
During a NASA mission on Mars, astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead during a mission abort due to an intense dust storm. After only six sols (that’s Martian days – which are approx. 37 min. longer than Earth days), Mark finds himself alone on a planet where nothing grows and yet he must find a way to grow food. Luckily, he’s a botanist… He also has to find a way to fix every damn thing that tries to kill him, including equipment malfunction and explosions resulting from his own stupidity. But hey – he’s also an engineer! Fixing things is his job.
Mark Watney (Weir, in actuality) is one of the most intelligent and hilarious charachters I’ve ever encountered. It’s not often I laugh out loud while reading a book, and it happened on numerous occasions while reading The Martian. Despite being in one of the shittiest situations imaginable, Watney’s resourcefulness and sense of humor are impressive. If anyone’s going to survive for years on Mars, it’s him. Although, he didn’t believe that throughout the book. The opening lines read:
“I’m pretty much fucked.
That’s my considered opinion.
Six days into what should be the greatest month of my life, and it’s turned into a nightmare.”
There’s a good reason this book is a #1 New York Times Bestseller…it’s gripping, entertaining and well-researched. The movie, directed by Ridley Scott, was just released in theaters this past week. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, but cannot stress enough that this book is a MUST READ!! Just prepare to be sucked into it and do nothing else until you’ve finished it.
*avid reader and daughter of Janet, owner of the Muse Book Shop.