I haven’t been this stressed out while reading a book since Gone Girl. Somehow I managed not to get the ending spoiled for me even though now I can kind of sort of see how it was in the comedy category at the Oscars. But still not really. I really do want to see the movie now though. But I digress, I’m here to talk about the book.
Mark Watney is stranded. On Mars. The odds aren’t looking good. Thankfully he’s brilliant, because duh “astronaut”. They don’t just let anyone be an astronaut. He faces serious life threatening situations, that he handles with some seriously genius ideas, and only a little bit of complaining. You would think having one guy narrate his life alone on Mars would be boring AF but it is actually super entertaining. Watney is a total smartass and I love it.
Through all of Watney’s smartass comments, and all of the awesome science fiction action, the story is grounded in friendship, persevering against all odds and what people will do for others in dire circumstances. These themes elevate the story from space adventure to a narrative that showcases the best parts of humanity.
One of the most fascinating parts of the story was learning about how much work it would actually take to send someone/a mission to space. I have no way of knowing how accurate the information is, mainly because we haven’t sent anyone to Mars, also because I have zero knowledge about NASA and the space program, but the information that was presented was absolutely fascinating. A lot of the technical terms and equations went over my head, but it still presented all of the brilliant minds that are behind the scenes and part of space missions. That alone was eye-opening for me, as well as being a little terrifying.
I loved this book. I wasn’t expecting to love this book. The Martian surprised me in the most wonderful way and I am so happy I finally read it. Now I just need to see the movie; I hope they kept all of Watney’s smartass comments in it.
“As with most of life’s problems, this can be solved by a box of pure radiation.“
“Yes, of course duct tape works in a near-vacuum. Duct tape works anywhere. Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped.”
“It’s true, you know. In space, no one can hear you scream like a little girl.”
Have you read The Martian or seen the movie? What did you think of them?