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
"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)
Fun story all around with many dimensions. Hard science and engineering, political science, philosophy, religion, ecology, civil liberties, aging, secondary and tertiary effects, and Martian vs Terran perspectives. This is going to be a repeat listen for sure. The narration was voiced well and naturally, but I knocked off a star for a couple of editing mistakes that took me out of the story.
I think I am in the minority here, but I couldn't get through the first third of this first volume. So much detail about the science, not enough plot, did not care about the characters. Really great concept. I might try it again.
I like happy endings and realism that is realistic rather than gritty.
I can't finish this book. I've tried--it was recommended as excellent sci-fi by someone I thought was a reliable source. I even bought the Kindle version through the Audible deal! Maybe I'll eventually just skim the story and read the sciency bits...
Alas, lots of boring character drama between and introspection about a group of truly unlikeable characters. The Moody Russian, American Golden Boy, and Jealous American Grasper, among others. Too much adolescent angst--and behavior --for a group of scientists settling a planet. It's just unpleasant, uninteresting, and otherwise blah.
Better character voices.
The first 100
If you're thinking about getting this, know that the first chapter occurs in the middle of the timeline of events that take place. I was confused by this at first. Another thing to note is that the narrator has about two voices and until you learn what characters are in a particular scene, it can be sometime tricky to know who is talking. The novel takes place chronologically for the most part from about five different people's perspective as well which can also make it challenging to follow along. The novel itself is very detailed which is great for some but I believe could have been condensed just slightly as the story tends to stall in great chunks. Then the novel just ends without a real sense of conclusion. Knowing that their are two other novels though, this isn't really a bad thing. In a way, I think you could sort of say that this is a bit like Game of Thrones on Mars.
This reads more like a tech manual at times. Heavy handed on the realism/racism with the Arabs being what they are in this book (not really spoiler but kind of). Also the idea everyone loses their damn minds is a little hard to swallow to a point... Interesting story but just not entertaining. YMMV. My friends loved the series. so...
I think the main problem with the book is the author is trying to be really detailed, but the story covers too long of a time period (decades) to be detailed. She just gives really long descriptions of a small amount of what's going on. There are a lot of good ideas in the book, but it needs a better story. It didn't help that the narrator wasn't very good. I had to stop listening after about 15 hours, I couldn't take it anymore.
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