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 & forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded & completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—& 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—& 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?
This book is unlike anything I've ever read, and it is wonderful.
The best part of the story is Mark Watney, he is now one of my favorite characters. He is in one of the most terrifying situations, but has a determination to keep living. Dying is not an option. His personality totally made this story for me. He is funny and so incredibly smart. I felt a strong connection to him and was rooting for him the entire way. He truly feels like a real person when reading this. Even in his impossible circumstance, he makes light of it and finds a way to make the reader laugh. His survival is a focus of the story, but I love that his personality is also allowed to shine through and his character is well developed.
The plot definitely kept me reading and kept me guessing. I read it in one day. I was a nervous wreck the entire time, but I had to know what was going to happen. It is told in a day by day fashion, which could drag some especially with all of the science and technical descriptions. Mark goes into great detail when he is trying to figure out how to grow, build, and make things to survive. If you're not into science and technology, this could get a bit dull. However, I mostly enjoyed it and I appreciated the attention to detail. I am glad I was able to read it so quickly because if I had let it drag on for a week or so, I don't think I would have enjoyed it as much.
There are also some POV switches to people working at NASA back on Earth. I thought it was so neat to see how everyone was responding to the situation including the media and public. It made for a nice change of pace, while adding to the tension and emotion of the mission. I felt happiness for each triumph, and aggravation at each stumble.
Overall, this is a very intense, inspiring read that captured my attention and heart. I'm so excited to see how the movie is!