Audie Award Finalist, Science Fiction, 2014
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
I am a layman who understood maybe 1/10 of the technical stuff in this book at best, yet I still enjoyed it. I was overwhelmingly impressed by the mechanics of the story, how each problem the protagonist faced on mars got solved. initially, I thought the frequent curse words detracted from the story, but it fits the character and the situation. If you're writing a journal and you think you're going to die, you're not going to say 'darn.' Aside from the story being quite outstanding, the narration is flawless.
The narration was perfect for the main character Mark Whatney.
It gets a little technical, but you don't have to be a technical person to appreciate the challenge and the logic Whatney is using trying to survive.
In attempting to leave Mars, after each setback is resolved, you're wondering, "What else can go wrong?"
Stay tuned, because you'll soon find out..
Just looking for an enjoyable story! Books are my passion.
EVERYTHING!! I told my son he had to read this. He bought it, and couldn't put it down. It's well written, and the narration is perfect!
No but I sure will now.
I tried but at 3AM, I still had 2 1/2 hours to go and had to go to bed. As soon as I woke up, the headphones were back on my head!
There is one heck of a story line, the math and science are spot on, and the narrator does a fantastic job. Even if you didn't like math or science in school, (I didn't.) it is worth reading. I don't want to spoil this book for anyone. All I can say is I haven't been this excited about a book in a long time!
This is the story of an astronaut abandoned accidentally on Mars, and is one of my all time favorite tales of survival. It takes place in the near future, with science that felt very much present day. This novel consists of amazing creative problem solving from start to end. While each situation seemed realistic, the sheer volume of creative thinking did seem unrealistic, but the story and engineering feats were too cool for me to care if it was over-the-top. You don't need scientific expertise to understand this, but an appreciation of creative solutions to problems will make this much more fun to listen to. I won't say more and spoil this awesome audio journey.
This book is both a celebration of man's ingenuity and our desire to survive no matter what the odds. And pure geekery.
I don't know how scientifically accurate the book is, but to a layman like myself, the problems encountered seem believable, and the solutions very clever.
Mark Watney (the protagonist) is the kind of hero i enjoy the most - not a superman with unrealistic capabilities, but a very approachable science geek, innovative, funny, brave, resourceful and very, very human.
As a middle-age designer with back problems, my chances for astronaut career are pretty slim, but this book should be a required reading for middle-school children to inspire next generation of scientists, dreamers and space explorers.
Loved the humor, the storytelling style and the overall storyline. This is a book I'll be recommending to friends and family.
Delivery of comic relief lines
Yes. Yes. Yes.
The problem solving steps the main character goes through are so interesting to listen to, and the stories that get spliced in with what's happening on mars don't take away from what's happening at all. It's almost like a book version of the movie Gravity, but based on Mars.
The teleological nature of the story doesn't lend itself to re-reading, but the quality and personality of the narration (see below) does make me miss the characters a bit.
Mr. Weir's book is technical enough to be believable (I'm not an engineer or a botanist, so please don't disabuse me if this book is entirely implausible) but does not get bogged down in detail. It's a balancing act that is pulled off well. Notwithstanding that we never hear much about Mark Watney's life off of Mars (he has problems pulling the ladies), he comes across as a well-rounded character (perhaps due to excellent narration) with whom I wouldn't mind being stranded on Mars. If I had to be stranded on Mars, that is.
While listening to this book, I kept wondering how this book wold have read without Mr. Bray's narration. Simply put, his reading made this book. By and large, narrators are talented actors that bring something to the story, but Mr. Bray made me feel not only Mark Watney's highs and lows, but his humor and perseverance.
I laughed, I cried, I cleaned the house several times more than I had to with my headphones on so I could find out what happened next. What more could one ask?
Disco. Goddamn disco.
This has become a permanent fixture on my iPhone, along with Catch 22. While there is a goodly amount of science in it, which may not appeal to some. It's written with such economy and wit that it becomes accessible to anyone.
Weir is not only clever, but a talented story-teller. Kudos to him. Also RC Bray does a magnificent job, with great characterisations and excellent comic timing.
Do yourselves a favour and grab it now.
Immersive, exciting, interesting.
The constant challenges faced by the protagonist...and the innovative, interesting solutions! The reader was also awesome.
The end...no spoilers...
Emotional at the end, imagining what it would be like...
Sometimes goofy, wondering if it would be possible to remain so sane over such a long time alone on another planet...but loved it.
I'm just a dumb troglodyte who like reading. Me feel good after I read book.
Andy Weirs’ “The Martian” is an exciting book that follows the daily existence of an astronaut stranded on Mars. The main character, Mark Watney, is a across the between Survivorman and Stephen Hawking. Wantney is an astronaut, botanist, and mechanical engineer. He must use all of these skills to maintain his existence on Mars while attempting to communicate with NASA back on earth. Watney is the sole character throughout the great majority of the book.
The strength of “The Martian” is Weir’s ability to describe highly complex scientific information (botany, chemistry, astronomy, and physics) in a manner that does not overwhelm or bore the reader. The Martians ‘other strength is the use of comedy and Watney’s affable personality. Although the situations in the book are desperate, the reader rarely has a sense of pessimism. Difficult situations and challenges represent opportunities to solve problems.
Although I like “The Martian”, there were sections of the book that seemed overly long. I also wish there was more of an emphasis on what was occurring on earth during Watney’s ordeal. However, casual science fiction fans should find “The Martian” exciting and enjoyable.
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.
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.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"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.
"A brilliant listen"
Great concept, largely well executed, I would be surprised (and disappointed) if Hollywood doesn't snap this up.
"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.
This has to be one of the best audiobooks I have listened to, I enjoyed it from start to finish. It's a modern take on a golden age sci-fi staple - "the stranded spaceman" but the contemporary referencing and modern pace is so well done it feels fresh and well conceived.
Its not often I have a book I think I have to "spread the word" about but this is an exception, Audible's return guarantee means you won't lose anything by giving this a go but personally it grabbed me within the first 5 minutes and my only disappointment was how short it felt; I would have happily had an extra couple of hours of this.
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