Completely reperformed by R.C. Bray to match the 2014 Random House release! includes Andy Weir's newly reimagined ending!
“One of the best thrillers I’ve read in a long time. It feels so real it could almost be nonfiction, and yet it has the narrative drive and power of a rocket launch. This is Apollo 13 times ten.” -Douglas Preston, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Impact and Blasphemy
“A book I just couldn’t put down! It has the very rare combination of a good, original story, interestingly real characters and fascinating technical accuracy…reads like MacGyver meets Mysterious Island. -Astronaut Chris Hadfield, Commander of the International Space Station and author of An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth
"The best book I've read in ages. Clear your schedule before you crack the seal. This story will take your breath away faster than a hull breech. Smart, funny, and whiteknuckle intense, The Martian is everything you want from a novel." -Hugh Howey, New York Times bestselling author of Wool
“The Martian kicked my ass! Weir has crafted a relentlessly entertaining and inventive survival thriller, a MacGyver trappedon Mars tale that feels just as real and harrowing as the true story of Apollo 13.” -Ernest Cline, New York Times bestselling author of Ready Player One
“Gripping…shapes up like Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe as written by someone brighter.” -Larry Niven, multiple Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author of the Ringworld series and Lucifer’s Hammer
“The tension simply never lets up, from the first page to the last, and at no point does the believability falter for even a second. You can't shake the feeling that this could all really happen.” -Patrick Lee, New York Times bestselling author of The Breach and Ghost Country
"Strong, resilent, and gutsy. It's Robinson Crusoe on Mars, 21st century style. Set aside a chunk of free time when you start this one. You're going to need it because you won't want to put it down." -Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The King’s Deception and The Columbus Affair
Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.
Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there.
After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.
Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.
But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills - and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit - he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"
©2012 Andy Weir (P)2013 Podium Publishing
Stumbled across this book and based on the reviews I gave it a shot. REALLY had a great time listening to this. I enjoy books that keep you engaged and this one had suspense, humor, and emotion wrapped into it. Bray as the narrator did an excellent job and brought out elements of the characters that I'm sure I wouldn't have found by just reading this book.
I wish more time was devoted to wrapping up the book with the ending but that's mainly because I didn't want the story to end. Too bad there aren't other books by Weir, I'd enjoy listening to them.
I thought the journal style of the story would be annoying in audio form, but it was not. It was strangely absorbing.
I loved the engineering and science covered in the story. I have no idea it it is accurate or true, but it certainly sounds well researched. It made science seem very cool, but not in a obvious way.
I also loved the sense of humor in this story. The protagonist is witty and sarcastic. There is a large amount of gallows humor, so be expected from a character accidentally abandoned on an entire planet, alone, with a slim chance of making it home alive.
R. C. Bray is absolutely the perfect narrator for this book. He conveys the protagonists humor and sarcasm perfectly.
Unbelievable made believable.
Too many great scenes to pick just one.
R.C.Bray brings a diversity of the characters to life that Wier has created
Bad Ass needs in space
I listened to this book in one day on a 120 mile bicycle ride and was disappointed when both were over. R.C. Bray made this story come to life. Andy Wier captures the smartass attitude of many of the real life adventurers I have as personal friends as well as the never give up spirit that drives them to overcome any odds. Get this book! You will only be disappointed when it's over
For the aspiring engineer/astronaut, this is a *very real* account of what a tragedy would be like and how a smart, rational, real-life hero might be like. My first listen was like a whirlwind, going start to finish at 3x in essentially a day. I couldn't stop. Well written. Andy Weir really did his homework. There are a few details which I'm sure were embellished for 'Hollywood', but these aside, the book is solid. Please buy and listen.
I really loved this book. Smart, funny, and well written. Plot is set in the near future, and I liked the grounding in real science and physics. It somehow made it more real. The story is gripping and I found myself holding my breath on more than one occasion!
Hours of on edge of seat excitement with intermittent humor. A joy to listen to. Makes me wish for the good old days of the space race. Too bad, currently it looks like the Chinese will be the first Martian adventurers.
Only at one point was I yelling at the narrator - "Duck tape, use duck tape." But he finally thought of it.
If you want to convince someone that math is important, let them read this. The man's life depends on the math he uses to decide how to use his resources and stay alive. Fantastic!
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.
This was a fun book with lots of interesting science/story. Lots of humor and wise cracking as well. Thought it would be good after reading reviews, but enjoyed it more and really MADE time to finish it up in a couple days. Overall, glad I listened!
The story is basically that an astronaut is left alone on the surface of Mars after an accident. The rest of his crew accidentally abandoned him after they thought he died. It was similar to that Tom Hanks movie Cast Away in many respects...but, of course, more extreme since it was on the surface of another planet.
The hero of the story had no super powers or extraordinary abilities. However, he did have highly specialized astronaut training that he fell back on time and time again. The events of the story are unlikely, but presented in a plausible way. That made it very enjoyable. The dialog didn't seem forced. The supporting characters were sketchy, but also believable.
I can see this story being made into a movie...it was written with shifting points of view and in an episodic story arc.
Overall, I enjoyed the narration, story, and production of this audiobook.
Absolutely. I was a little hesitant to begin the book, as the publishers blurb, which is really the first paragraph or so of the actual book seemed a little over the top. However, after listening for the first 10-15 minutes the story draws you in and keeps you there to the end.
The pacing of the story was perfect and I never felt that there were portions that were not important to advancing the plot/storyline.
The pacing of the story was perfect and I never felt that there were portions that were not important to advancing the plot/storyline. The technical details were plausible and not subject to technical jargon that solely functions as filler to make the story sound high-tech. At the same time the technical aspect was balanced with a wonderfully sarcastic sense of humor, which provided good relief from the stress one would feel from being stuck on Mars.
Additionally, the plot twists did not seem forced in an effort to drum up drama. The things that went wrong were potential hazards in space exploration.
A line from the book; Watney, "Disco, DISCO!?"
No, I listen on the airplane most of the time or while driving.
"Incredibly technical, don't let that put you off"
Wow - a really great novel. I found it very difficult at first and almost gave up due to some of the very technical details that are a major part of the story. However, these details soon formed the important backdrop to the delivery of the novel. I probably only understood 10% or so as I'm not an engineer or scientist - but it didn't matter at all. I was caught up in the tense, almost impossible situation that the main character found himself in. I was gripped within a few chapters, especially when other characters were introduced, and ended up spending my Saturday afternoon in the grip of this ultimate survival tale.
This is how audiobooks should be done. The performance was spot-on. I've abandoned so many books of late because of annoying performances, but Bray nails this one. Between him and the book, I really enjoyed this. Not sure if it was the content or the delivery or a combination that truly did it for me, no matter which, they were well suited.
"Possibly the best SF audio book I have listened to"
Andy Weir, you are a genius, a comedian, a scientist, and a master of suspense, all in one single volume!
What a great book!
First off, to cover one or two other comments, yes, there is quite a bit of technical detail in this that you might think will put you off. Trust me, it doesn't. Weir is gentle with to the reader, giving information a NASA scientist would be happy with but at a level that my mother in law (not blessed in grey matter) could digest. Having said that, you don't feel patronised and you certainly get caught up in a gripping struggle for survival and will find yourself going on longer walks or just sitting in the car to hear the end of the next chapter.
This book is so full of surprises - and the humour is certainly one of them. In the middle of life and death decisions and cataclysms you find yourself laughing out loud, much to the disturbance of the general public around you.
If you like a good thriller and against all odds story, this one will keep you off the pause button until it's white knuckle end.
I'm almost jealous of you, dear unknowing reader, for the joy you have before you.
I will certainly be returning to Mars to relive this one very soon.
Great sci-fi quite technical which I love but doesn't get in the way I think.
Really good performance from R C Bray too, the characters were great.
Really kept me listening. Will be looking out for more from Weir.
"Fantastic read, best I've heard in ages."
Unequivocally. The story is well conceived, fast paced and very well edited. It starts with a bang and gets right into it. There is a lot of science at first but it is of the sort that if you follow it, fantastic, if you don't, then it isn't going to detract from the plot. Just as it looks like it might get a bit samey the author mixes it up (no spoilers) and keeps things fresh.
I was terrified that there might be a lame ending but Andy Weir did a great job there too.
For me this will be my 'go to' book for recommendations for a while.
The idea, the character, and the nice way the author has taken what is probably classed as a sci-fi but made it all entirely plausible and reads more like a tense ?drama or 'action diary'. I love sci-fi and space operas so I was delighted.
Live another Sol. Read the book, it'll make sense.
The only flaw is the laughable German accent the narrator tries. I can't criticise though as it amused me so much.
If from the reviews and blurb you are even slightly tempted by this then do yourself a favour and read it.
I'm off to eat a potato.
"probably the best book i listened to"
this book is great from the very begging right through to the end .
Mark Watney is really the only character in the book, he is very well written with great humour and whit in the face of death.
this guy really was an execellent choice for this book, i think he nailed Mark Watney. he also sounds very much like the US comedian Rich Hall, and has his dry whit, that really suits the writing style
There is to many good parts it would be unfair to choose one. however this is one of the only book that has totally pulled me into the story and actually made my pulse raise.
i cant take credit for this, another reviewer i read said; "a cross between Apollo 13 and castaway, with a little space balls thrown in". sums it up to a Tee.
"Another fun one."
A journal (logbook), written by the chap left behind? Yes, this could have been a bore - but it so wasn't!! The sheer tenacity of the man, plus his seemingly endless capacity for humour makes this a very enjoyable listen.
Even his repeated calculations didn't overly bore me, as they added to the anticipation (or dread). Couldn't help but root for him every step of the way.
I have no clue as to whether the scientific aspects / space stuff is realistic or not - it didn't matter to me - it just all added to the fun.
Excellent narration, and very well suited to the main character.
"A five star pleasure (and one or two planets)"
I realize I am going to repeat what others have already said here - however...
I enjoyed this audio-book as much as any other I've listened to, and more than most.
Initially, twenty minutes in, I was starting to wonder if the whole thing was a series of technical solutions to some challenging problems. It DOES have a lot of detailed commentary about what the protagonist is up to - but it is delivered with humor - both by the author and the narrator and has direct relevance to what is happening.
The story soon expands into a gripping tale that had me laughing one minute and on the edge of my seat the next.
The narration by Mr. Bray was excellent - intonation perfectly reflecting the dialogue, story and characters. Ok - perhaps the German accent was a little dodgy in places - but it was certainly good enough to consistently identify one of the characters.
The story would make a great film - but I expect if Hollywood actually did their paws on it the project it would suffer.
Well done Andy Weir.
The dry humour of the sol logs by Mark & the performance by Bray. He read it so well.
Mark, he remained so positive during his time on Mars.
When NASA realised he was going to fetch Pathfinder to re-establish communication.
I laughed right throughout the book. Such brilliant dry humour at times making light of a serious situation. Was not expecting it.
This is the best Audible book I've downloaded to date.
"Compelling and brilliantly researched."
I have already recommended this book to every space nerd I know (that's a lot of people). Not only is it exciting, funny and totally believable but it really puts you right with the character and his daily battle against a planet that desperately wants to kill him.
What I liked best about the story was how it managed to lurch from one crisis to another without getting tiresome. The descriptions of the daily chores of surviving on another planet with not even the bare minimum of equipment and food are far more gripping than they ought to be. At it's best it is an amazing character study of a man fighting against despair and certain death with just his wits, good luck, training, humour and optimism. The Martian is never less than utterly compelling.
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