The Martian by Andy Weir

The Martian

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 suppl...

Title:The Martian
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:0804139024
Edition Language:English
Number of Pages:369 pages

The Martian Reviews

  • Davy-Gravy

    Unpopular opinion time: I don't like how this book is written. Watney's journals read like a nerdy blog rather than a dramatic survivor's diary. It's hard to find something harrowing and traumatic when the protagonist is saying "yay!" a lot and making incessant corny puns. "3.6 pirate-ninjas!" "Yay oxygen!" "Lol gay probe lol!!!!!1!" "Bad rover, no Scooby snack!!!111!" "LOL craaaaaaap!!1!" For me, those aren't funny, they're almost embarrassing.

    No matter what horrible thing is happening to Watne

    Unpopular opinion time: I don't like how this book is written. Watney's journals read like a nerdy blog rather than a dramatic survivor's diary. It's hard to find something harrowing and traumatic when the protagonist is saying "yay!" a lot and making incessant corny puns. "3.6 pirate-ninjas!" "Yay oxygen!" "Lol gay probe lol!!!!!1!" "Bad rover, no Scooby snack!!!111!" "LOL craaaaaaap!!1!" For me, those aren't funny, they're almost embarrassing.

    No matter what horrible thing is happening to Watney, he's sure to pull though, but not before laying a smug, cutesy zinger on us. It sucks all the tension out of any situation, which is the complete opposite of what I want in a book that's supposed to be a thriller.

    Now, don't get me wrong, Andy Weir is a great technical writer. When Watney isn't being a wacky douche, he's going on and on about some technical or mechanical or biological process that, with me not being a scientist, usually goes over my head. And that's fine, I have no fault with a book that's factually complicated like that. In fact, it's really admirable and cool that Weir is able to pool all of his expertise into a book about survival on Mars.

    That being said, other aspects of the book suffer. According to the author's bio on the back of the book, Andy Weir "was first hired as a programmer for a national laboratory at age fifteen and has been working as a software engineer ever since. He is also a lifelong space nerd and a devoted hobbyist of subjects like relativistic physics, orbital mechanics, and the history of manned spaceflight." If I can stereotype here, it shows. My guess is that he doesn't really know how people behave or interact in the real world. The dialog is stilted and awkward. The characters are all one-dimensional and flat. They almost seem like an afterthought. The emotional and psychological trauma rendered by all these near-death experiences and complete and utter isolation? What trauma? There's no mention of

    anywhere. Watney is apparently that cool and awesome of a guy, as evidenced by all his canned laugh track one-liners and grating sarcasm.

    But hey, maybe that doesn't bother some people (obviously, considering that people actually watch

    ), and they're in for a technologically-driven, "funny" space-thriller. Because I have to admit, it's a terrifyingly cool premise. It just wasn't what I was expecting. I was hoping for an emotionally-taxing, horrifying, survival drama, but instead got a cutesily witty astrophysics manual. Just because something is nerdy doesn't automatically mean that it's good.

  • Althea Ann

    'Crap! My astronaut crewmates accidentally left me behind on Mars! I'm fucked! I'm going to die! Oh wait! I just thought of something highly logically unlikely and technically complicated, that I am sure to pull off without a hitch, because did I mention that I am Plucky and Ingenious? It sure is a good thing that I am super-talented! Yay! That worked! I'm not dead! [Next chapter] But wait! Disaster has struck! Shit happens, when you're stuck alone on Mars. Whatever shall I do? OMG, I just had a

    'Crap! My astronaut crewmates accidentally left me behind on Mars! I'm fucked! I'm going to die! Oh wait! I just thought of something highly logically unlikely and technically complicated, that I am sure to pull off without a hitch, because did I mention that I am Plucky and Ingenious? It sure is a good thing that I am super-talented! Yay! That worked! I'm not dead! [Next chapter] But wait! Disaster has struck! Shit happens, when you're stuck alone on Mars. Whatever shall I do? OMG, I just had a great idea! It's a good thing I'm so naturally optimistic, because it sure would make for a bummer book if I ever showed any signs of being depressed or having any kind of mental deterioration after spending nearly two years in total solitude! Nah, I've got the fightin' spirit! I can create a life support system out of duct tape! What does Mars actually look like? Is there anything interesting from a scientific perspective about it? Who cares! I'm busy growing potatoes in shit and watching Three's Company! Did I mention that disco sucks?'

    Repeat.

    For a while.

    I do not get the hype.

  • Kat O'Keeffe

    This book was fantastic! A thrilling survival story with a hearty dose of humor. The main character Mark was such a smartass and I LOVED IT. The voice and the premise hooked me in right away and kept me thoroughly engaged the whole time. My only real issues were that some of the minor characters didn't really stand out as much as they could've, and some of the science heavy bits were a little hard to follow and felt info-dumpy at times. But the human aspect--the heart of the story--was totally o

    This book was fantastic! A thrilling survival story with a hearty dose of humor. The main character Mark was such a smartass and I LOVED IT. The voice and the premise hooked me in right away and kept me thoroughly engaged the whole time. My only real issues were that some of the minor characters didn't really stand out as much as they could've, and some of the science heavy bits were a little hard to follow and felt info-dumpy at times. But the human aspect--the heart of the story--was totally on point, and for the most part I just had a great time reading this!

    Overall, this book was exciting and fun and oh man, am I excited for the movie! I would definitely recommend this to anyone who likes survival stories or funny thrillers or sci-fi with an emphasis on the sci!

  • Wil Wheaton

    I have never wanted so badly for the characters in a book to be real. I want to meet them all the way I want to meet the president, or Taylor Swift.

    This story is perfectly told. It is perfectly paced, it is brilliantly written, it is beautifully crafted.

    Andy Weir does this incredible thing where he make the reader

    the isolation that Mark Wagner feels, and he does it so subtly, we don't even realize that he's doing it until it's done.

    The Martian completely captivated me. I couldn't wait to f

    I have never wanted so badly for the characters in a book to be real. I want to meet them all the way I want to meet the president, or Taylor Swift.

    This story is perfectly told. It is perfectly paced, it is brilliantly written, it is beautifully crafted.

    Andy Weir does this incredible thing where he make the reader

    the isolation that Mark Wagner feels, and he does it so subtly, we don't even realize that he's doing it until it's done.

    The Martian completely captivated me. I couldn't wait to find out what happened next, and I never wanted it to end.

  • Rick Riordan

    Adult science thriller.

    Love it, love it! A meticulously researched, briskly paced and surprisingly funny story about an astronaut left behind on Mars, presumed dead, who must now figure out how to survive and let the folks back on Earth know he is alive and needs rescue. This is hard-science science fiction. Parts of it read like really complicated (but amusing) word problems, juggling mass and time and weight, etc. But all of that adds to the realism. You can tell Andy Weir loves his space exp

    Adult science thriller.

    Love it, love it! A meticulously researched, briskly paced and surprisingly funny story about an astronaut left behind on Mars, presumed dead, who must now figure out how to survive and let the folks back on Earth know he is alive and needs rescue. This is hard-science science fiction. Parts of it read like really complicated (but amusing) word problems, juggling mass and time and weight, etc. But all of that adds to the realism. You can tell Andy Weir loves his space exploration and knows a ton about it. He totally had me convinced, anyway. The Martian is a fast read, and the main character’s irrepressible sense of humor will have you cheering for him as he tries to survive against impossible odds. I will also never eat another potato again. (Long story.) If you’re looking for a fast-paced, believable space adventure set in present day, this is your book.


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