I like these kinds of stories that offer suspense, a bit of mystery and quick-witted dialogue. It's written as a series of log entries and I was worried that it might be stilted and boring. Then you realize that when you are writing with the expectation that no one will ever read it (especially when you're still alive) you have the freedom to write exactly what you want with all the social commentary you choose. Don't misunderstand me, this isn't a book filled with social commentary of the political kind. The deepest commentary in the log has to do with why anyone would choose to bring only DISCO music on a journey to Mars.
This is a story where things go wrong and our hero ... well, does heroic things. Unbelievable, sure, but not so totally outside the realm of possibility that you get hung up on it.
Bottom line, this book is fun. If a book can cause me to laugh out loud spontaneously in the midst of a quiet Dr. waiting room, then it's a book that I will endorse with 5 stars. This one did that repeatedly.
Get it just for the fun of it.
If Andy Weir has gotten any of the technical details wrong in any major way, you'd almost need to be a rocket engineer to spot them. I say almost, because I spotted a couple of minor ones that don't really impact the story any.
This is an adventure story about survival in some of the most inhospitable conditions imaginable, with the focus of an engineer and the pacing of an experienced author.
You would think that given the technical detail and accuracy that has gone into this story that it would be slow and tedious to read, but Mr. Weir has done a brilliant job of weaving the explanations into the story without bogging down in them.
R.C. Bray does a very good job with narration, acting just enough and using enough variation in the voices and accents to keep things easy to understand and identify. Mr. Bray does make one or two little annoying mistakes when reading words that those of us in the computer industry use (e.g. for "ASCII" he pronounces "A" "S" "C" "2" instead of saying ass-key) but these small errors are entirely forgivable given the skill with which the rest of his work is delivered.
The great writing and the awesome narration combine to make this an extremely enjoyable listen.
This book made me laugh out loud numerous times. Andy Weir instilled a very droll sense of humor in our intrepid astronaut.
I'm not a rocket scientist so I'm not sure of the science but it sounds good to the layman.
I wanted to listen to this non-stop but I also didn't want it to end.
I have a new favorite author and a new favorite narrator.
I listen to a lot of audio books and this is the most enjoyable listen I've heard in some time. The story is great but the performance by Andy Weir is worthy of an Audi!
No, I rarely read the same book twice. Dont get me wrong, It was brilliant.
Heating bathwater with a radioactive isotope.
I laughed quite a few times.
A brilliant book, hard science sci fi like this is hard to come by.
I'm an avid audiobook "reader", sometimes going through up to 8 books a month (lots & lots of driving and no TV!). I believe I picked this one up on sale and it turned out to be one of the most enjoyable audio experiences I've had in some time. It took a few minutes to acclimate to the writing style of alternating between action (mainly academic) and science-speak. Noting some of the reviewer comments I was also very nervous about the narration style. While I can understand reviewers who were a bit negative - there have been several narrators who have cost me highly rated books - I have to say I was captivated by the dry inflection that Mr Bray used to portray the wit and and humor of an extremely smart and not-old man. I'm up for a second go!
I was really surprised to see a previous review that seemed to suggest the narrator didn't portray the comedy very well. I couldn't disagree more! The narration was full of 'life' and 'character' - especially on all the sarcastic humor. It was just bang on by my estimate.If you've already read the Kindle edition, then you obviously know all the jokes that are coming. But this is not a 'dry' read by any stretch of the imagination.
I gave the story aspect just 4 stars because it did drag slightly in the middle, and the ending was somewhat abrupt.
But the drag through the middle past pretty quickly. And really, neither of these issues detracted from the experience for me.
This is a really cool story! Sort of a blend of the movies Cast Away and Apollo 13 (Tom Hanks would make a great Watney!). But for reviews on the story you'd be best to check out Amazon - there are a lot!
Many instances. In the actual book mostly the humour. In the audiobook mainly the story.
Mark "The Martian" Watney.
Life Found on Mars!
I gave five stars for the story and four for the narration. The voice is right for the main character, but humour played a good part in the book and the narrator very often seems to just talk over some of the best lines. I can remember some laugh out loud moments when reading the book, but there are none in the audiobook.
The Martian is a hard science fiction thrill ride. Hard science fiction is fiction fully grounded in contemporary science - no light sabers or magic ray guns. Mr. Weir constructs a contemporary world that could exist today if mankind devoted the resources for manned missions to Mars. I would rank "The Martian" as one of the best books I've read in the past two years. It is an outstanding piece of fiction all around.
The story focuses on the life and death struggles of Mark Watney, a botanist engineer astronaut. The character is believable with a likable sense of humor. Much of the story unfolds as journal entries Mark records as he chronicles his struggles surviving alone on Mars.
I love books that educate as well as entertain. If this book couldn't spur a passion in learning and understanding science in a person, nothing could. However, don't be intimidated by the science, Mr. Weir's Mark Watney explains scientific concepts in a simple and relate-able way with plenty of humor. Mark Watney is an enjoyable mash up of Indiana Jones, Bill Nye the Science Guy, and MacGyver. You can't help learning from him as you root for him.
I understand this book is being turned into a movie, and the tag line could easily be "Yeah Science!" I suspect the movie could do for modern scientific concepts what "Jurassic Park" did for concepts like Chaos Theory and De-Extinction.
I have no doubts that this book will eventually pierce the collective subconscious of 21st century pop culture. Mark Watney is the hero humanity needs and deserves right now. He is the underdog everyman whose heroic deeds may be limited to survival, but more importantly, he gifts the world with the truth that scientific advancement is a goal worthy of all humanity.