‘The Martian’ by Andy Weir
A look at the bestselling novel before it was the movie
By Polly Eason
Millions of miles from any human contact. Living on a planet determined to kill him. Running out of supplies with deteriorating resources. One man’s fight to survive against all odds. “The Martian”, written by Andy Weir, brings a whole new level to your average survival story.
Mark Watney is stranded on Mars. Six days into the Area 3 mission, the team is forced to abort due to a powerful storm. In an unfortunate accident during the escape, Watney is believed dead and therefore, left behind. He is now struggling to survive. Completely alone and millions of miles from any human contact, readers follow Watney on his incredible journey to attempt contact with Earth, maintain resources and most importantly, stay alive.
Not one to usually pick up a science fiction novel, I was intrigued by the buzz around the book. Recently made into a movie starring Matt Damon,The Martian has been on my radar. I bought the book, sat down, and opened the first page. I was instantly hooked. Hilariously written, emotionally captivating, and scientific to the max, Andy Weir has managed to write a novel that will appeal to everyone. The highlight of this book is the incredible character created by Weir. Not only is Mark
Watney resourceful, ingenious, and smart as hell, he is also insanely funny. I was laughing throughout the entire book, stopping to read passages to my roommate that had us both cracking up. Whether he is making light in yet another technological problem
(“Maybe I’ll post a consumer review. ‘Brought product to surface of Mars. It stopped working. 0/10.’”), or just making fun of his ridiculous predicament (“Actually, I was the very lowest ranked member of the crew. I would only be ‘in command’ if I were the only remaining person. What do you know? I’m in command.”), Watney kept me laughing the entire way. This humor lent an essential helping hand in getting me through the amount of math and science that filled the book. I’m a journalist student,
therefore, not so much into the numbers.
But throughout each complicated equation essential to Watney’s survival, his colorful character shone through. “I’m traveling 90 kilometers per day as usual, but I onlyget 37 kilometers closer to Schiaparelli because Pythagoras is a dick.”On top of creating an incredible character, the storyitself is in one word, beautiful; it truly captures what it means to be human. As a reader, you will be left uplifted by Watney’s determination to live and by the world’s strong will to “bring him home”.
I would highly recommend this book. Whether you’re looking to geek out (a perfect read if you are) or just looking for a mesmerizing read (again, a perfect read for it), Weir’s novel will capture your attention. You won’t want to put it down until the last page is turned.