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Weir blends humor with thrills in Martian

Joel Freecheck

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The Martian by Andy Weir is sheer gold, reminiscent of H.G. Wells’ masterpiece War of the Worlds, and a breathtaking novel on its own accord.

A book that should’ve taken me a day or two to finish kept me up all night, and left me in awe when I read its final words. The Martian is a perfect example of modern science fiction.

I found this book by mistake as I was shopping on Amazon. It is set in the near future–not dystopian, just slightly more technologically advanced. Mark Watney and his crew landed on Mars six days before the novel starts, and by some horrible luck, he ends up stranded alone on the red planet, thought of by NASA and Earth as dead. The book explores Mark’s push for survival, and with a little of Watney’s wit and a ton of duct tape, the story concludes in a bang.

Yes, of course duct tape works in a near-vacuum. Duct tape works anywhere.”

— (Weir 154)

What fascinated me the most as an aspiring author is the way Weir weaves comicality with conflict. He, for the most part, does this without a flaw, allowing the book to flow smoothly through even the most exhilarating parts. Weir also inputs an exorbitant amount of detail and realism to the text, creating a plot that is believable and clings to you weeks after you finish the novel. It’s as though Weir sculpted Mark Watney after himself.

I would recommend The Martian to everyone I know. Not just my parents or my friends, but my neighbors, classmates, and teachers as well. The book is bound to reach the #1 international bestseller position by the end of 2015. A film adaptation directed by Ridley Scott (Alien, Gladiator) and starring Matt Damon and Jessica Chastain hits theaters in November, which will further book sales. Also, I have personally reached out to the author Andy Weir through email regarding his next project, and by early next year Weir will publish his sophomore novel. Oh the sweet anticipation.

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