Mark Watney is an astronaut whose dreams came true when he became one of the first people to walk on Mars. But then a wind storm hit, and a pole punctured his spacesuit and knocked him out. His crew had to abandon him on the surface of Mars, assuming he was dead, to save themselves. Now he is alone on Mars, injured but not dead, with no way to communicate with Earth. He has to rely on his engineering skills and strong will to try to survive for as long as possible.
The Martian by Andy Weir is written as Watney's journal, for the most part. He is an engineer who details the specific scientific processes he uses to do everything he does as he tries to survive on this planet alone. The technical details are a bit much at times, but it's Watney's personality that makes the story so compelling. He's a smartass who uses plenty of bad language and sarcastic remarks as a coping method to deal with his predicament. I found myself really liking this guy!
This is a man-against-the-elements type of book, so there's plenty of suspense as to what will really become of Watney in the end. Although the entire premise of the book seems far-fetched, the way Weir writes with such technical detail makes it actually seem plausible. The actions of the crew that left him behind and the people back on Earth are very realistic as well.
I found The Martian to be an amazing story, full of suspense and emotion, and it even taught me a thing or two about chemistry and engineering! As mentioned, the technical details may turn some readers off, but you can get a lot out of the story even if you skim some of Watney's chemistry lessons. If you enjoy sci-fi, I highly recommend The Martian!
My Rating: 4/5
This review was written based on a copy of The Martian that I received as a gift. This post includes an Amazon Affiliates link.
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