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Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson

Red Mars

by Kim Stanley Robinson

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Mars Trilogy (Book 1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
6,052125976 (3.89)1 / 301

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English (116)  French (3)  Spanish (2)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (124)
Showing 1-5 of 116 (next | show all)
This was a fantastic read. The characters all felt real, and each moment of pressure was vividly felt, as well as each moment of peace. It makes me excited for a day when we finally go to Mars, but also makes me wary of the various issues that will result. (I'd say I'm a green, by the way. Make Mars habitable, but don't make it Earth 2) ( )
  avarisclari | Jul 13, 2018 |
Leafed through it at the library, but couldn't bring myself to check it out. I don't know what seemed so bad about it, I was enjoying the idea of a hard science novel about the colonization of Mars. But the characters seemed like they were the things on which the plot would hang, and they were so not there.
  themulhern | Mar 3, 2018 |
I've had this Mars trilogy on my TBR pile for a while & have had the books waiting for me so it being summer, I decided to get to the first. I enjoyed following the main characters from the first 100 but I can't say that I particularly liked any of them. I enjoyed watching what motivated them especially when it came to the treaty negotiations in the final thirds of the book. The question of who and how a group is governed and managed plays throughout the book and with Earth in an ever tenuous situation, there's no way this is going to end politely or simply. In fact, things take a deadly turn before this ends and what comes next is in flux. Also, seeing new religious traditions take shape on Mars alongside those who've retained the faith and worship traditions they had when they were on Earth was interesting and well done.

For me the book was best in the first and last thirds, the middle just felt unnecessarily ponderous and meandering. There was far too much time spent on the John/Maya/Frank ever shifting love triangle. They were,, none of them rendered so deeply as multifaceted characters to make it worth that much attention and it didn't influence or steer the real political and economic situation on Mars, so seriously, who cares? If I'm honest, I'm kinda looking forward to the next book because I won't have to be bothered with some of the main First 100. Most were as irritating as they were interesting and I'm just ready to meet some new people and see them take up the cause. The only one of the group that I wanted to see more of remained seriously remote and elusive most of this book but she finally showed up at the last page. The ending really gave me hope.

I'll definitely read the next because it feels like it's just getting to what has most got my interest. I'm looking forward to see the next generation get into the game as their only home has ever been Mars and I hope to see more of Earth's push. The corporations gambit and the response to it have altered the entire planet so, very interesting times. Recommended for fans of colonization science fiction. ( )
  anissaannalise | Feb 28, 2018 |
The two best writers that I've discovered in the past two years, Francis Spufford and Tim Kreider, both praise Robinson's Mars trilogy with great enthusiasm, but I found the atmosphere a little thin. To be sure, not only is the science convincing and detailed, the scenery is vivid, and the characters have a depth and versimilitude not often seen in hard-core SF novels. The trouble is that while Robinson has the imagination to create a convincing array of disparate characters, he doesn't have the power to inhabit them. All of the characters, whether manic, depressive, bluff, cold, or impulsive, are described as from a distance, in the same dispassionate authorial voice — even in the sections told from their points of view. This makes the story less thrilling than it has every right to be. It's particularly troublesome in the chapter given over to the perpetually aggrieved Frank Chalmers, Every story benefits from a great villain, but Chalmers' fury seems petty and dyspeptic, impossible to respect.

An epic of Martian terraforming and colonization is a grand prospect, especially when even at the close of the first book it's becoming clear that nobody here is going to build another Earth, but that an entirely new kind of human society—and a new race of people—is being born. But it would be so much better to be among these people, as a reader, than it is to be merely observing them with a dry, emotionless perspective, however godlike the vision. ( )
  john.cooper | Dec 28, 2017 |
A look into a future where we have the technology to colonise and terraform Mars. And as usual, the complications are caused by the human dynamic of how a new society is formed by the first 100 scientists sent over and the conflict between the people who want to make Mars their home and the Earth corporations who just want to profit from it.
I don't claim to be a science expert, so I can't say how accurate or plausible the science is, but it was an enjoyable read.
However, I must admit that I did skim some pages at the end with long descriptions of the landscape because I just wanted to find out what was going to happen next. ( )
  DeborahJade | Dec 25, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 116 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (14 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kim Stanley Robinsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bösl, ElisabethTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dixon, DonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Elson, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Petri, WinfriedTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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for Lisa
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Mars was empty before we came.
"We became friends first," Arkady said once, "that's what makes this different, don't you think?" He prodded her with a finger. "I love you."
When you expect to live another two hundred years, you behave differently from when you expect to live only twenty.
Possess nothing and be possessed by nothing. Put away what you have in your head, give what you have in your heart.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553560735, Mass Market Paperback)

Red Mars opens with a tragic murder, an event that becomes the focal point for the surviving characters and the turning point in a long intrigue that pits idealistic Mars colonists against a desperately overpopulated Earth, radical political groups of all stripes against each other, and the interests of transnational corporations against the dreams of the pioneers.

This is a vast book: a chronicle of the exploration of Mars with some of the most engaging, vivid, and human characters in recent science fiction. Robinson fantasizes brilliantly about the science of terraforming a hostile world, analyzes the socio-economic forces that propel and attempt to control real interplanetary colonization, and imagines the diverse reactions that humanity would have to the dead, red planet.

Red Mars is so magnificent a story, you will want to move on to Blue Mars and Green Mars. But this first, most beautiful book is definitely the best of the three. Readers new to Robinson may want to follow up with some other books that take place in the colonized solar system of the future: either his earlier (less polished but more carefree) The Memory of Whiteness and Icehenge, or 1998's Antarctica. --L. Blunt Jackson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:03 -0400)

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Chronicles the colonization of Mars in the year 2026. In his most ambitious project to date, award-winning author Kim Stanley Robinson utilizes years of research and cutting-edge science in the first of three novels that will chronicle the colonization of Mars. For eons, sandstorms have swept the barren desolate landscape of the red planet. For centuries, Mars has beckoned to mankind to come and conquer its hostile climate. Now, in the year 2026, a group of one hundred colonists is about to fulfill that destiny. John Boone, Maya Toitovna, Frank Chalmers, and Arkady Bogdanov lead a mission whose ultimate goal is the terraforming of Mars. For some, Mars will become a passion driving them to daring acts of courage and madness; for others it offers an opportunity to strip the planet of its riches. And for the genetic "alchemists, " Mars presents a chance to create a biomedical miracle, a breakthrough that could change all we know about life, and death. The colonists place giant satellite mirrors in Martian orbit to reflect light to the planet's surface. Black dust sprinkled on the polar caps will capture warmth and melt the ice. And massive tunnels, kilometers in depth, will be drilled into the Martian mantle to create stupendous vents of hot gases. Against this backdrop of epic upheaval, rivalries, loves, and friendships will form and fall to pieces, for there are those who will fight to the death to prevent Mars from ever being changed. Brilliantly imagined, breathtaking in scope and ingenuity, Red Mars is an epic scientific saga, chronicling the next step in human evolution and creating a world in its entirety. Red Mars shows us a future, with both glory and tarnish, that awes with complexity and inspires with vision.… (more)

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