The Martian, by Andy Weir

You can buy this book here, and the film of it here.

I deliberately haven’t watched the film yet, as I was busy finishing the book. Sometimes the film isn’t as good as the book, and if you watch it first, it means you’re not free to imagine it better.

Anyway, I just need to say that this book is EPIC. It’s really exciting, there’s a new disaster or challenge every few pages, and loads of cliffhangers (like when he accidentally has too much hydrogen and makes the whole Hab into a bomb!). It’s really fascinating seeing how he does all the problem solving and getting out of difficult situations.

This book is also epic because of the way it’s written. It’s all his personal diary, so it’s as if you’re in his head, experiencing it all with him. He can tell you what he did, but also how he feels, all the time. I like how he’s sort of making a log for other people to read, and sort of making it just for himself, to make himself feel less alone, and also so that if he dies his story can still be told. I’m wondering how they get the film to do all this, and whether it will be as good as in the book.

This book is easy to read, and fast-paced. It would suit people at secondary school, or adults, and anyone who likes science fiction, or survival stories, would enjoy it.