Last Christmas I was extremely grateful to receive The Martian, one of my top to-read books, from my dear friend M at Rain City Reads (thank you so much!!!). I completely fell in love with the story and was captivated from start to finish. I’d meant to blog about this sooner, but somehow I never got to it. Well, better late than never, right? Since I’m sure many of you have either read this book already or have read numerous reviews, I figured I would write a list of 5 reasons why I love The Martian so much. (Read the book’s synopsis here!)
1. The cheeky narrator.
One of the first things you’ll notice after starting the book is how humourous Mark Watney, the narrator and stranded astronaut, is. Personally, I’d find it pretty impossible to be so funny and sarcastic in his situation, but his ability to be like that is what makes him so lovable. He combines logic and science (yay!) with humour and heart to become one of my favourite narrators in recent history.
2. The science.
Disclaimer: I know next to nothing about botany and engineering and my math is… functional. But Weir makes everything so believable. I really could picture Mark figuring out how to grow crops using his own biomatter as manure, and how to create his own water using his engineering and chemistry knowledge. Best of all, he made me feel like I understood everything he was saying! Sure, his plans may be far-fetched in reality, but it sure didn’t feel like it when I was reading.
3. The suspense.
Will he make it out alive??? So many elements are working against Mark, from having to grow his own food, create water in a highly combustible environment, and move his whole station to a different part of Mars where the next mission will be. There’s also incredible suspense on Earth: will NASA even be able to create a vessel to send to Mars to save Mark in time?
4. It’s not all about Mark.
Judging from what I’ve said so far about The Martian, it would be easy to assume that the book is all about Mark. But it’s not. Weir also takes the time to develop secondary characters, from Mark’s crew mates (who followed orders and left Mars thinking Mark had died, and then had to find out that he hadn’t and they had essentially abandoned him) to the NASA employees who have to put together some sort of plan. They all seem so real, so believable, and have their own voices. It makes the book so fascinating and fun to read. I can’t wait to see this on the big screen.
5. It has a great publishing story.
Okay, so maybe this isn’t really about The Martian’s content, but I love hearing a great success story. Did you know that The Martian was initially self-published on Weir’s website and then picked up by a Newmarket-based audiobook publisher Podium Publishing? Go Canada! Eventually, Weir caught the attention of traditional book publishers, and, well, the rest is history.
So there you go! 5 reasons why I loved The Martian by Andy Weir. I absolutely can’t wait to see this on the big screen and judging by the trailer, I think it’s going to be amazing! Watch it here:
Have you read The Martian? What did you think? Are you looking forward to seeing the movie?