Title: The Martian
Author: Andy Weir
Page Count/Review Word Count: 372
I guess I made a mistake with this one because I watched the movie before I read the book. I actually think that the movie was a pretty good adaptation of the book and that they did a good job of representing it. Sure, that meant there were no surprises in store for me when I read the novel, but that didn’t really hamper my enjoyment.
I probably don’t need to spend time explaining the plot of this book because it’s been talked about a lot. What I will say is that people are right when they talk about Watney’s sense of humour in it, and I was particularly impressed by the fact that it was originally self-published before being picked up by a mainstream publisher.
It turned out to be a super enjoyable read, and the only real problem that I had with it was that some of the more technical parts got a little boring and kind of slowed it all down, so I ended up skimming over them. But at the same time, I also think it was necessary to give the book an authentic feel, and from what I can understand all of the science is well-researched and entirely possible.
So for me at least, The Martian is worthy of the hype, but I’m also not surprised that Artemis received mixed reviews. Weir’s writing style really works with this kind of book, but I’m not convinced of how versatile it would be. But if you judge this book for what it is, it’s just a decent sci-fi novel with mainstream appeal. And the fact that it has mainstream appeal means that you’re pretty likely to enjoy it if you pick it up.
I’m also pleased to say that even though I’d already seen the movie, the book was still a lot of fun. I particularly enjoyed the references to Watney reading Agatha Christie to keep himself sane and while I initially found them jarring, the switches in perspective to what was happening on earth actually added a lot to the story. I enjoyed it. Go read it some time.