At First Glance: Cover
My Rating: 9/10
It’s hard not to notice this cover from across the bookstore. As someone who generally doesn’t read much science fiction, I really appreciate the simple, clean design of Andy Weir’s THE MARTIAN. There’s a hint of mystery to it, in that we can’t see the astronaut’s face or understand his or her situation. Clearly, though, it’s about Mars. The colors are stunning and, let’s face it, the original cover art is ALWAYS better than the ones that come out after a book has been made into a film. I try to take into consideration the story itself when I rate a cover, and this one suits the book perfectly! My ONLY complaint (a teensy one) was that the colors needed to be just a tad more saturated to really pack a more visual punch!
The Meat of the Matter: Content
My Rating: 9/10
As I said before, I am not usually much of a scifi fan – at least, not when it comes to books. It’s nothing personal against the genre, I’ve just only read a few that really grabbed me. So I went into this with a fairly open and unbiased mind. Now, I’m pleased to call this one of my absolute favorite science fiction reads. It’s been a long time since a book had me laughing out loud. THE MARTIAN is packed full of witty, quick jokes and sassy remarks from its main character, Mark Watney.
The plot moves at a steady, quick yet comfortable pace, and you don’t have to be a physics major to understand what’s happening – so it’s a very approachable read even for those of us who have only just strayed from the fantasy aisle.
My complaints, once again, are purely that of personal taste. This is a book I wouldn’t have listened to on Audible with my son around because of the amount of language in it. To me, it’s just not necessary. It doesn’t add anything to the story for me. I doubt the book would have suffered if they had removed ten or fifteen F-bombs from it. So, mommies beware, if you are sensitive to having that kind of language dropped around the little ears in your house, this might not be one to listen to on the next family drive.
The Martian, Himself: Characterization
My Rating: 10/10
You could tell that Weir was definitely “in the zone” whenever he wrote as his main character and protagonist, Mark Watney. I connected with him right away as a reader. He comes across as an approachable, friendly, nerdy, but somewhat snarky guy who likes giving his friends a little bit of a hard time. He’s also extremely self-driven, a trait I can attest is common among these kinds of type-A personality people. And he raises a really good question – exactly how can Merman talk to whales, since they’re mammals not fish?
Would I recommend this book to others? I already have, actually! It’s certainly well deserving of all the accolades it has received and has more than earned its place on the bestseller bookshelves. I can’t wait to read more from Andy Weir and see which planet he takes me to next!