(Read between 22/10/2016 – 21/11/2016)
The Martian is a science-fiction novel which tells the story of Mark Watney, a NASA astronaut who becomes the only living human on Mars when his crew abandon him, on presumption that he has died. When Mark discovers he is alone on Mars he now has to figure out how to survive for as long as possible on a planet that is almost completely uninhabitable. The book flicks between Mark’s Sol’s (days on Mars) and NASA scientists back on Earth, both frantically trying to figure out how to keep Mark alive and they can possibly save him.
The book could serve as an advert for Murphy’s Law! Throughout the novel almost anything that could go wrong, does! Just when Mark seems to have figured out a way at surviving for the time being, disaster always seems to strike. This keeps the reader constantly on the edge of their seat and hooked to see what happens next.
The novel also displays what human intelligence and sheer will can achieve. Because of difficulties of communication on Mars, Mark is largely left to his own throughout the novel to come up with solutions to lethal situations. The book is inspiring because it shows how combining the intelligence with a strong will to survive can do.
I would recommend this book to readers. It far exceeded my expectations. I had decided to read the book because the movie came out last year and a friend recommended that I give the book a go first. I decided to give it a go as a break after a few difficult reads and it didn’t disappoint. As well as having really interesting science in the book, it is also a really funny read, with plenty of moments of humour to compliment the stressful ones.