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Review: Project Hail Mary

Title: Project Hail Mary
Author: Andy Weir
Genre: Science Fiction Fantasy
Page Count: 476
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Date Published: May 4, 2021
You can find it here: Bookshop.org

Goodreads Synopsis:

Ryland Grace is the sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission–and if he fails, humanity and the earth itself will perish.

Except that right now, he doesn’t know that. He can’t even remember his own name, let alone the nature of his assignment or how to complete it.

All he knows is that he’s been asleep for a very, very long time. And he’s just been awakened to find himself millions of miles from home, with nothing but two corpses for company.

His crewmates dead, his memories fuzzily returning, he realizes that an impossible task now confronts him. Alone on this tiny ship that’s been cobbled together by every government and space agency on the planet and hurled into the depths of space, it’s up to him to conquer an extinction-level threat to our species.

And thanks to an unexpected ally, he just might have a chance.


3.5 Stars. I’m rounding up because of my adoration for a certain character that has stolen my heart and pitch perfect ending.

This was one interesting roller coaster of reader emotions for me. Having watched and enjoyed The Martian, but not having read the novel, I don’t think I was fully prepared for the plethora of drowning scientific detail that is an Andy Weir novel. For some people, that’s going to be the bees knees, but for the majority of this book I was bored to tears with the scientific verbal diarrhea … and I have a Bachelor of Science degree! 

Regardless, I kept reading. For 75% of this book I found the main character to lack any emotional depth and his “aww shucks, everything’s so quippy” attitude excessively annoying, and of course, the unending, relentless detailed laboratory experiments to be exhaustingly tedious … but all that negativity couldn’t match my absolute love for a certain character. I had to know what happened! 

Luckily this story completely spun around for me around the last 150 page mark. From surprise twists, to fantastic character revelations & growth, friendship, (and most importantly, learning to skim the science bits), I ended up really loving this all to scarily plausible world disaster story. Will I read another Andy Weir book? Hecka no! But I’m all for watching the movie. This is a fantastically drawn work of science fiction with incredible amounts of research and a wholly delightful side character to warm the cockles of your heart. If you love your sci-fi with heavy heaps of scientific details, you’re gonna love Project Hail Mary!  

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