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The Martian

by Andy Weir

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Mark Watney (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
11,552957384 (4.27)3 / 875
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 plain-old "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?… (more)
Recently added byjstomczyk, RP166, jpierces2, LadyDarbanville, PyroCat, imlee, pgkr, leezeebee, snogglethorpe, private library
Legacy LibrariesTim Spalding
  1. 131
    Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson (fichtennadel)
  2. 60
    Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void by Mary Roach (sboyte)
    sboyte: One is fiction and one is nonfiction, but the subject matter is similar and I think both will appeal to anyone who enjoys science with a dash of humor.
  3. 71
    The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe (timspalding)
  4. 61
    The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne (rakerman)
    rakerman: In The Mysterious Island, a small group lands on an island with no technology other than a watch and proceed to rebuild Victorian industrial civilization. The scientific details of creating each new device and system are carefully described. In The Martian, similar care is taken to describe the modified systems and devices needed to sustain the astronaut on Mars.… (more)
  5. 50
    A Fall of Moondust by Arthur C. Clarke (pnorth)
  6. 30
    Seveneves by Neal Stephenson (hoddybook)
    hoddybook: Engineering solutions in stressful conditions.
  7. 20
    Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan (sturlington)
    sturlington: Mr. Penumbra's reminded me in tone and its reverence for tech, geeks, and pop culture of both The Martian and Ready Player One.
  8. 20
    The Fated Sky by Mary Robinette Kowal (Aquila)
  9. 20
    The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal (g33kgrrl)
    g33kgrrl: Disaster hits and you have to engineer the impossible in a low-resource setting. In Kowal's book, it's getting a habitable off-world environment using 1950s tech before earth becomes unlivable. Highly recommended.
  10. 20
    The Explorer by James Smythe (jonathankws)
  11. 20
    Voyage by Stephen Baxter (dClauzel)
    dClauzel: Deux histoires autour du voyage vers Mars : comment y aller, et aussi comment en repartir. Problématiques scientifiques, difficultés d’ingénierie, et troubles politiques.
  12. 31
    Failure is not an Option: Mission Control from Mercury to Apollo 13 and Beyond by Eugene Kranz (bertilak)
  13. 10
    How To: Absurd Scientific Advice for Common Real-World Problems by Randall Munroe (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Both are extensively researched, mathematically-grounded descriptions of kluged solutions to "real-world" problems by web comic authors with backgrounds in STEM careers.
  14. 10
    Mars Crossing by Geoffrey A. Landis (Anonymous user)
  15. 10
    Year Zero by Rob Reid (TomWaitsTables)
  16. 10
    Apollo: The Race to the Moon by Charles Murray (lturpin42)
  17. 32
    Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13 by Jim Lovell (misericordia)
    misericordia: If you want to understand what a Steely Eyed Missile Man is, read Lost Moon.
  18. 10
    The Patriots of Mars: The God That Failed by Jeff Faria (heatherlove)
  19. 22
    Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (sturlington)
    sturlington: For geeking out
  20. 11
    Dragonfly: NASA And The Crisis Aboard Mir by Bryan Burrough (misericordia)
    misericordia: For more reference to how NASA really works read Dragonfly

(see all 21 recommendations)


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English (933)  German (7)  Spanish (3)  French (3)  Hungarian (2)  Dutch (2)  Catalan (1)  Italian (1)  Danish (1)  Turkish (1)  All languages (954)
Showing 1-5 of 933 (next | show all)
“I bought this on a drunken whim” is a sentence that has immediately preceded many a relationship breakup. Not this time, though. I purchased The Martian from Amazon after having read numerous glowing reviews of it on Goodreads and quite a few beers. I then polished it off on a train ride to… somewhere. I don't remember where, only that it probably wasn't Mars. I do remember that I was somewhat down in the dumps at the start of that train ride, and by the end of it I was not only chirpy but positively fired up to go do some science. This is a useful frame of mind for me, given that's my job.

Rather than go into the many merits of Andy Weir's book I'll finish the review using the medium of Mars-based webcomics. Immediately before reading The Martian I was sad. Just like I am every time I finish reading this xkcd. By the end I was happy. Just like I am when I read this comic. ( )
  leezeebee | Jul 6, 2020 |

I came so late to "The Martian" party. Not because I wasn't interested in it. But I always get leery about hyped books because I end up not liking them except for a few select cases. After watching the movie (and loving it) I was worried the novel would tarnish my enjoyment of the movie. I am so happy that I was wrong.

Andy Weir in the character of Mark Watney makes such a memorable guy that you could see yourself sitting around having a beer with and watching the sunset. He is a jokester who ends up being the very heart of his crew that has a mission to Mars. When a dust storm pops up forcing the crew to evacuate Mars earlier than expected, Mark is hit with debris and is left for dead. Readers get that he is alive, but it takes a long time for anyone else to figure it out. Weir switches between Watney's perspective, those at NASA who realize he is alive, and then his crew members aboard Ares 3.

Besides my love of Mark. I totally fell in love with the NASA PR rep Annie who was funny and brutal with calling out cowardice that she saw in others.

The character of Venkat Kapoor I found to be pretty great too. Of course the real hero (besides Mark) of the hour in the book was Mitch Henderson. Mitch kicked butt.

Also though this book shows the love that Weir has for space travel and astronauts, and just science in general. This book had me outside at one point looking up. I think many of us think/dream about space because it holds so many possibilities.

I thought the writing was great and Weir does a good job of having Mark and others explain what they are thinking/doing without making it too technical. Though at times I can honestly say I was a bit lost. Look I don't want to think too hard about manure, ever, so I am just going to trust that proper research was done.

This book was also very funny. I don't even know how many times I laughed while reading, but I cracked up a lot. The nerdiness of some of the NASA people (The Lord of the Rings) cracked me up, and Mark's horror of having to watch 70s shows and listen to disco music made me snort laugh a few times.

The flow from beginning to end really did work. I think it's like Weir knew when people were ready for an update from NASA, wanted to get back to Mark, or wanted to check on the Ares crew.

The setting of Mars though is definitely lonely/hostile for Mark. For him to crave the HAB (where he had to stay) and then going between that and him having to work so hard in order to stay alive (growing potatoes) and how much energy he is expending to keep going was just jaw dropping. Since I saw the movie first, it was easier for me to picture things though. I think if I went into this without seeing the movie, I would have been a bit more confused about the setup of things that the book was referring to.

The ending in the movie I liked much better than this one. We get more of a wrap in in the movie. The book ends on a joke (of course it does), but the way it is left, I can now see why Weir is planning on a sequel.

I highly recommend this book! ( )
  ObsidianBlue | Jul 1, 2020 |
This was a fun yet very stressful read. Watney was an amusing narrator and turned a novel that could have been potentially bleak at times into something genuinely enjoyable. ( )
  angelgay | Jul 1, 2020 |
Mark made me laugh and cry. I was glad this wasnt super heavy on the science of things. I love the pop culture references too. ( )
  audraelizabeth | Jun 30, 2020 |
This was great! It’s a nice thrill ride with something around every corner. It really encourages you to binge-read. The humor and science of the book are great, important elements—they keep it from getting too over dramatic or self-serious. ( )
  ryanruppe | Jun 27, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 933 (next | show all)

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Weir, Andyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bray, R. C.Narratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Haynes, FredMapsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moerdijk, HenkTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rendfleisch, ElizabethDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
White, EricCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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ebook Newton (Narrativa, 793)
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For Mom
who calls me "Pickle,"
and Dad,
who calls me "Dude."
First words
I'm pretty much fucked.
Also, I have duct tape. Ordinary duct tape, like you buy at a hardware store. Turns out even NASA can't improve on duct tape.
I need to ask myself, "What would an Apollo astronaut do?" He'd drink three whiskey sours, drive his Corvette to the launchpad, then fly to the moon in a command module smaller than my Rover. Man, those guys were cool.
Yes, of course duct tape works in a near-vacuum. Duct tape works anywhere. Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped.
As with most of life's problems, this one can be solved by a box of pure radiation.
Hurray for standardized valve systems!
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description



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 the planet while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded on Mars, completely alone, with no way to signal Earth that he's alive. And even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone years before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, Mark won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain, old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

But Mark's not ready to quit. Armed with nothing but his ingenuity and his engineering skills — and a gallows sense of humor that proves to be his greatest source of strength — he embarks on a dogged quest to stay alive, using his botany expertise to grow food and even hatching a mad plan to contact NASA back on Earth.

As he overcomes one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next, Mark begins to let himself believe he might make it off the planet alive.

But Mars has plenty of surprises in store for him yet.

Grounded in real, present-day science from the first page to the last, yet propelled by a brilliantly ingenious plot that surprises the reader again and again, The Martian is a truly remarkable thriller — an impossible to put down suspense novel that manages to read like a real-life survival tale.

Haiku summary
In a desert-sea

With little chance to survive

He will overcome

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