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Red Mars | [Kim Stanley Robinson]

Red Mars

Winner of the Nebula Award for Best Novel, Red Mars is the first book in Kim Stanley Robinson's best-selling trilogy. Red Mars is praised by scientists for its detailed visions of future technology. It is also hailed by authors and critics for its vivid characters and dramatic conflicts.

For centuries, the red planet has enticed the people of Earth. Now an international group of scientists has colonized Mars. Leaving Earth forever, these 100 people have traveled nine months to reach their new home. This is the remarkable story of the world they create - and the hidden power struggles of those who want to control it.

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Publisher's Summary

Winner of the Nebula Award for Best Novel, Red Mars is the first book in Kim Stanley Robinson's best-selling trilogy. Red Mars is praised by scientists for its detailed visions of future technology. It is also hailed by authors and critics for its vivid characters and dramatic conflicts.

For centuries, the red planet has enticed the people of Earth. Now an international group of scientists has colonized Mars. Leaving Earth forever, these 100 people have traveled nine months to reach their new home. This is the remarkable story of the world they create - and the hidden power struggles of those who want to control it.

Although it is fiction, Red Mars is based on years of research. As living spaces and greenhouses multiply, an astonishing panorama of our galactic future rises from the red dust. Through Richard Ferrone's narration, each scene is energized with the designs and dreams of the extraordinary pioneers.

©1993 Kim Stanley Robinson; (P)2000 Recorded Books

What the Critics Say

  • Nebula Award, Best Novel, 1993

"Generously blending hard science with canny insight into human strengths and weaknesses, this suspenseful sf saga should appeal to a wide range of readers." (Library Journal)
"The ultimate in future history." (Daily Mail)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (1206 )
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3.9 (617 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Brad 03-20-15
    Brad 03-20-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Brilliant!"

    Classic example of what Science Fiction is supposed to be. Easily one of the top ten all-time Mars theme tales ever.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cary Bountiful, UT, United States 03-11-15
    Cary Bountiful, UT, United States 03-11-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Slow to start but worth it in the end"

    Very slow start but loved the end. Can't wait to listen to the next one. If you like hard science fiction then this is it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dean 01-04-15
    Dean 01-04-15 Member Since 2009

    a Tech Exec who loves the stories about what could be and what should have been. Mixed with histories told from an outside perspective.

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    "many years of societal evolution in a very shot st"
    Any additional comments?

    Red mars is a great piece of writing, which at times would have benefited by concentrating on a tighter timeframe.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lady Evanlee Troll MANCHESTER, KY, United States 12-29-14
    Lady Evanlee Troll MANCHESTER, KY, United States 12-29-14 Member Since 2014
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    "I wish there was a different narrator. :("

    It's necessary to explain how I listen to my audio books right now. I play them at night, when I lay down and play my games, and during the night. I hear a lot more of the books than one might think.

    With that explained, RED MARS begins as a 100 person trip to Mars of the best (insert here), to live on Mars. Sounds simple? Ain't.

    I don't like to knock people at their jobs. This fellow shouldn't give up his day job. There are SO many opportunities in this book for a good narrator, or group of narrators. The characters are so rich and diverse. Even among the Americas, there's not really much in the way of differentiation. But even KNOWING there were Russians, Iranian, Iraqi, Shiite, Egyptian, Japanese, Chinese, German, and on and on--my memory is lacking--when I listen to this book I FORGET that Sasha and Nadya are Russian, cause they sound like everyone else. The only group he accented were Southern, and he didn't get us right. The way he reads the book is like all the countries had a prerequisite, and only one. If you go to Mars, you have to speak darn good English--unless you're Southern!

    I'm sorry I''ve rambled, but one more thing. He keeps mispronouncing words!

    This is a decent book. What a shame to do that to a book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. L. G. Stark Santa Fe, NM United States 12-04-14
    G. L. G. Stark Santa Fe, NM United States 12-04-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Great Story (I think)"
    What made the experience of listening to Red Mars the most enjoyable?

    Really enjoyed the story line and the creative approaches taken towards colonization etc...


    Any additional comments?

    Having said that... the narrator really killed it for me. The story was good enough to slog through the narrator. It really felt like he was reading it, instead of "telling" it, he also had some very odd pronunciation choices that persisted through the book and took me out of the story each time. Maybe i'm overly particular on that point, but I suggested this book to more that one person with the caveat that they should read it and avoid the audio production.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Writrix 11-25-14
    Writrix 11-25-14 Member Since 2015
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    "An old favorite in a new format!"
    Where does Red Mars rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Red Mars probably ranks among my five all-time favorites. I actually read the whole Mars Trilogy some years ago and wanted to visit that world again, without having to sit and read. The audiobook was the perfect way to do that.


    What other book might you compare Red Mars to and why?

    Boy, that's a tough one! I'm a big fan of Kim Stanley Robinson. He definitely writes hard science fiction, not space opera, though his characters are terrific, as well. He also has a beautiful, well-defined philosophy. If you mixed any of the books from David Brin's uplift series with a little Ursula K. Le Guin, you might come out with something akin to the Mars Trilogy, though Robinson's trilogy is set closer to our own time.


    What about Richard Ferrone’s performance did you like?

    Ferrone has a lovely, rich voice, but one that doesn't impose itself on the story. He also has a wonderful clarity, something important when the material includes scientific explanations of story events. He manages to convey complex ideas in a completely understandable voice. I've listened to quite a few sci-fi and fantasy audiobooks, some read by their own authors, and Ferrone is one of the best narrators.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Tired of Earth's problems? Start fresh on Mars!


    Any additional comments?

    Red Mars is a must-read title in science fiction. This audiobook is a good way to read it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Olivier de Brizule 10-25-14
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    "this IS tedious"
    If you could sum up Red Mars in three words, what would they be?

    It is a long story, where not much happens. The details are impressive, the scientific imagination as well and documentation amazed me often, but despites iincredible efforts, the charachters are... plainly stupid. Nothing like the brilliant scientists and astute politicians they are supposed to be. While other characters seems amazed by their doing, the depiction of those actions seem very basic, not very smart, so not much to be amazed of. So there is definitely a flaw in the story. As per the narrator, his narrative tune emphasizes this feeling of naivity in all key players actions. But still that remains a fantastic piece of sci fi work, just be patient as it can take ages to develop and action, and you really wonder often...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill W. 06-29-14
    Bill W. 06-29-14
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    "A great book, but a poor reading"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I have read the book before and enjoyed listening to it as an Audiobook.


    What other book might you compare Red Mars to and why?

    There are a number of sci fi books that cover similar territory, such as Mars, Moving Mars, and The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Richard Ferrone’s performances?

    I would look for other narrators before listening to another book read by Richard Ferrone. This book, with a large international cast of characters, calls for someone who could do at least basic accents to differentiate the characters. Ferrone doesn't attempt this. Even if you forgive that, he often puts emphasis in strange places that obfuscate the meaning of the words. He also clearly does not have a background in the sciences and much of his technical vocabulary is mispronounced. For a book with as much technical vocabulary as this, that gets really annoying.


    Do you think Red Mars needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    It has one (Green Mars). It also as a prequel (Antarctica), which is unfortunately not available as an audio book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jessica MINNEAPOLIS, MN, United States 04-16-14
    jessica MINNEAPOLIS, MN, United States 04-16-14 Member Since 2015
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    "excellent and it sat in my library for 6 years"

    I bought all three of these books years ago and HATED Red Mars. Never finished it and I tried several times. It was boring and way too dry and sciencey. I wasted a small fortune.

    Well last summer I was listening to an old ITunes play list and Green Mars popped on at the end of something else. I was in the middle of a project and wasn't going to stop to change it. The recording started in the middle, talking about how plants survive winter and deal with salinity- a subject lately dear to me, and I was drawn in completely.

    I have listened to the whole series now and I cannot imagine how I didn't like it all those years ago. Its really not very sciencey, I mean sure .. a bit... but the characterizations and the story do not rely on the science. There is much, much more of politics and as much of magic as there is of science in this series.


    The performance is great

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joshua Krist 02-03-14
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    "Rocky start, but loving it now"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    It almost feels like the first few chapters were taken from the middle of the book then tacked on the front. Once the book starts following the chronology of the setters, starting with the selection process, it got really good.


    Any additional comments?

    Did anyone else feel like the first few chapters didn't belong there or is it just me? It was plain odd.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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