Astronaut Mark Watney in The Martian by Andy Weir

June 7, 2022 by Essay Writer

The novel I chose to read for my quarter 3 book talk is The Martian by Andy Weir. It is a science-fiction based survival and adventure story which takes place on the planet of Mars. It is told in a first-person and third-person perspective.

Astronaut Mark Watney is part of NASA’s Ares 3 mission to the planet of Mars. The crew finally arrived on Mars with the goal of spending a month’s time there, taking samples from Mars’ surface. Mark is a botanist, therefore he was assigned with the job of collecting soil samples and performing experiments to test the quality of the soil. Mark has spent years of training building up to this mission and can not wait to get his samples.

After 6 Sols (that is the term for a day on Mars), tragedy strikes. Mark and his crew are caught in the midst of a dust storm and while Mark’s crew was able to make it into the escape pod in time, Mark was not so lucky. He ended up getting impaled by a large antenna and got astray in the storm. Mark’s crew presumably thinks he’s dead and leaves him back on Mars.

Marks wakes up with a very serious abrasion and recalls the events that unfolded during the storm. He realizes he has lost contact with NASA and his crew. To make matters even worse, the food supply that was left will certainly not last more than a month. It is inevitable that Mark is going to die there, the next Ares mission to Mars is scheduled in 4 years, but since NASA has the assumption that Mark is dead, the mission could be delayed even more.

There are no dumb astronauts, all of them are very intelligent and have a very high degree in some field, hence the reason why they were sent out into space in the first place. Mark is also a very intelligent man (no surprise there), but he specializes in the field that might save his life. Plants. A botanist is a scientist who studies plants and Mark is one of the best in the world. He then comes up with a plan, he could possibly grow his own food in his living quarters which is called the Hab. With this plan, maybe Mark could live a little longer than his original approximation.

With no way to contact NASA that he is alive, running out of food, Mark has to act quickly. What will he do? Will he be able to contact NASA? Most importantly, will Mark survive and be able to see his beautiful wife again. Read to find out in this thrilling novel written by Andy Weir.

Reflection

When I started reading this book, I had extremely high hopes for this book and man this book was insanely good. I loved every part of this book! The Martian was one of the first books I could not put down. The humor was one of my favorite parts of this story, Andy Weir portrays Mark Watney as a witty person who always seems find humor even in the darkest of days. This aspect to the story helped relieve tension especially when the story got really suspenseful. The amount of detail put into the mechanics of space was incredible, although sometimes it got a little too advanced for my age. I found myself connecting multiple times with this story, at the time I was reading the story, we were studying space in science which helped me both understand the story and the unit of space even better.

The only dislike I have about the story, and I have touched on it earlier was that it got too scientific at some points. Because of all the space vocabulary and mechanics, I felt that this was NASA material, not 14-year-old space material. This caused me to sometimes lose focus in the book and I would become distracted. It would only last for short periods of time, even if it was that long, but then the humor would bring back my attention.

The Martian is outrageously funny, although it is not always aged mature humor, it is still funny. Saying that I would totally recommend this action-packed thriller to any adventure lover, space freak or anyone. I would recommend this book to anyone. I can honestly say that this is a great story, one of the best books I have ever read. To this day, I can not think of a better novel that has made my gut drop or my face hurt too much from laughing. That is how great this book is and I encourage anyone to read it right now!

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