The Martian

By Andy Weir

It’s been really interesting to me to see the different reactions to this book from the people I know who have read it. A few (mostly writers and professional critics) have found it fair but a bit workmanlike in its prose, others (mostly male engineers) have proclaimed it the best book they’ve read in years, while others (mostly women) have found it infuriatingly sexist. As for me, I pretty much get where everyone is coming from. The prose isn’t great but it’s adequate. The engineering aspects are very well-handled, and it works pretty well as a survival story. I wouldn’t call it “great” by any stretch, but I get why my male co-workers were so thrilled by it—any group of people who are used to being underrepresented in media are going to enjoy seeing themselves cast as heroes. And although I wasn’t personally moved to anger by the sexism in this story, I did find it irritating and definitely a drag on what could have been a fun, science-y, Castaway-in-space story. I will say, I was a little surprised at just how much in the minority I seem to be in my opinion; browsing through the responses on Goodreads, it seems like just about everybody loved it. I guess you’ll just have to make up your own mind about it.

Started: 6/19/2015 | Finished: 6/26/2015

Purchase from Amazon | Purchase from B&N | GoodReads Page