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The Martian

by

The Martian Cover

ISBN13: 9780553418026
ISBN10: 0553418025
All Product Details

 

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015 07:00 PM
This month we meet to discuss The Martian by Andy Weir. Join us!

See our full selection of signed editions from authors coming to Powell's

Staff Pick

An absolutely riveting adventure about an astronaut stranded on Mars and what he must do to survive. White-knuckle, nail-biting sci-fi adventure at its best. You will never look at a potato the same way after reading this.
Recommended by Mary Jo, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

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?

Review:

“Brilliant…a celebration of human ingenuity [and] the purest example of real-science sci-fi for many years.…Utterly compelling.” Wall Street Journal

Review:

“Terrific stuff, a crackling good read that devotees of space travel will devour like candy…succeeds on several levels and for a variety of reasons, not least of which is its surprising plausibility.” USA Today  

Review:

“An impressively geeky debut…the technical details keep the story relentlessly precise and the suspense ramped up. And really, how can anyone not root for a regular dude to prove the U-S-A still has the Right Stuff?” Entertainment Weekly

Review:

“Gripping…[features] a hero who can solve almost every problem while still being hilarious. It’s hard not to be swept up in [Weir’s] vision and root for every one of these characters." The Onion AV Club

Review:

"An excellent first novel...Weir laces the technical details with enough keen wit to satisfy hard science fiction fan and general reader alike [and] keeps the story escalating to a riveting conclusion." Publisher's Weekly (starred)

Review:

"Riveting...a tightly constructed and completely believable story of a man's ingenuity and strength in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds." Booklist

Review:

"Sharp, funny and thrilling, with just the right amount of geekery...Weir displays a virtuosic ability to write about highly technical situations without leaving readers far behind. The result is a story that is as plausible as it is compelling." Kirkus

Review:

"Weir combines the heart-stopping with the humorous in this brilliant debut novel...by placing a nail-biting life-and-death situation on Mars and adding a snarky and wise-cracking nerdy hero, Weir has created the perfect mix of action and space adventure." Library Journal (starred)

About the Author

ANDY WEIR was first hired as a programmer for a national laboratory at age fifteen and has been working as a software engineer ever since. He is also a lifelong space nerd and a devoted hobbyist of subjects like relativistic physics, orbital mechanics, and the history of manned spaceflight. The Martian is his first novel.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

The Lost Entwife, December 19, 2014 (view all comments by The Lost Entwife)
I picked up a copy of Andy Weir's The Martian when it was released because, frankly, I absolutely adore survival stories. I blame my love of them totally on Swiss Family Robinson and The Myserious Island. I also have a major fascination with space (and the ocean) - basically anything that represents places that have been left completely unexplored and have the potential for so much.

However, once I'd purchased The Martian, I found myself diving into required reading for my first semester of graduate school so, alas, it had to be put on the back burner. My father read it, and laughed out loud several times - also, he took the time to update me on the spectacularly hilarious, crass opening line. It's a doozy, folks. But it's perfect because it sets the story up remarkably well.

Mark Watney is the perfect character for a story like this. He's filled with humor and just the right blend of sarcasm and hope. The book, similarly, was also filled with a perfect blend of science, implausible plausibility (oxymoron? it works though), and outright funny moments. It deals with everything from human waste, immature behavior that comes as a result of massive responsibility, and a message of hope for the working together of the humans of the world. What I also loved was that the book dealt SOLELY with the survival aspect. There was no extended story about everything that happens after, it revolves completely around the obstacles Watney faces and how it all works out in the end.

I very much recommend this book for science lovers, adventure lovers, and people who just enjoy a good laugh at some pretty crude jokes. My dad and I both loved it and I enjoyed chatting with him about it once I'd finished.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
lukas, December 12, 2014 (view all comments by lukas)
Heard good things about this, but have to disagree with most of the commentators. The main problem with this book is how poorly written it is. The bio of Andy Weir describes him as a "space nerd" with a background in computer programming and, not to sound like a snob, it's clear that has little experience writing fiction. The narrator's voice is glib and annoying, like something you'd read on an internet message board. Typical statements are "In your face, Neil Armstrong!" and "Gay probe coming to save me." The plot is also overly familiar, drawing more from films than sci-fi lit: "Apollo 13," "Castaway," "Armageddon," "Gravity," and the 60s movie "Robinson Crusoe on Mars," which could've been the title of this.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(0 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
threepinks3, December 10, 2014 (view all comments by threepinks3)
A crew of astronauts have to leave Mars in a hurry due to a storm. It appears that Mark gets killed so they leave him. Turns out he survived. The reader is treated to every minute detail as he aspires to survive and then attempt to get rescued. Swearing.
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View all 5 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780553418026
Author:
Weir, Andy
Publisher:
Broadway Books
Subject:
Science Fiction and Fantasy-Adventure
Subject:
Science / Adventure
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20141028
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
400
Dimensions:
8.01 x 5.2 x 0.88 in 0.68 lb

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Bestsellers
Featured Titles » General
Featured Titles » Genre
Featured Titles » Literature
Featured Titles » Staff Picks
Featured Titles » Wintersalen
Fiction and Poetry » Popular Fiction » Suspense
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Adventure
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » Featured Titles

The Martian New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$15.00 In Stock
Product details 400 pages Broadway Books - English 9780553418026 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

An absolutely riveting adventure about an astronaut stranded on Mars and what he must do to survive. White-knuckle, nail-biting sci-fi adventure at its best. You will never look at a potato the same way after reading this.

"Review" by , “Brilliant…a celebration of human ingenuity [and] the purest example of real-science sci-fi for many years.…Utterly compelling.”
"Review" by , “Terrific stuff, a crackling good read that devotees of space travel will devour like candy…succeeds on several levels and for a variety of reasons, not least of which is its surprising plausibility.”
"Review" by , “An impressively geeky debut…the technical details keep the story relentlessly precise and the suspense ramped up. And really, how can anyone not root for a regular dude to prove the U-S-A still has the Right Stuff?”
"Review" by , “Gripping…[features] a hero who can solve almost every problem while still being hilarious. It’s hard not to be swept up in [Weir’s] vision and root for every one of these characters."
"Review" by , "An excellent first novel...Weir laces the technical details with enough keen wit to satisfy hard science fiction fan and general reader alike [and] keeps the story escalating to a riveting conclusion."
"Review" by , "Riveting...a tightly constructed and completely believable story of a man's ingenuity and strength in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds."
"Review" by , "Sharp, funny and thrilling, with just the right amount of geekery...Weir displays a virtuosic ability to write about highly technical situations without leaving readers far behind. The result is a story that is as plausible as it is compelling."
"Review" by , "Weir combines the heart-stopping with the humorous in this brilliant debut novel...by placing a nail-biting life-and-death situation on Mars and adding a snarky and wise-cracking nerdy hero, Weir has created the perfect mix of action and space adventure."
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