Audiobook Review: The Martian by Andy Weir

Posted June 11, 2015 by Carmel in Audiobook Reviews, Carmel, Reviews, Science Fiction / 23 Comments

Audiobook Review: The Martian by Andy Weir
The Martian by Andy Weir
Narrator: R.C. Bray
Published by Podium Publishing
Published on: March 22, 2013
Genres: Science Fiction
Length: 10 hrs & 53 mins
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
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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 and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and 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—and 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?

Top Read SciFi Out of this World Movie

My reading horizons consist of Paranormal, Paranormal, and more Paranormal. So, when The Bookaholic Cat fervently recommended this SciFi audiobook to me, I was skeptical. However, past experience has taught me not to ignore my fellow bloggers, and that served me well once again because THE MARTIAN was outstanding! This genre isn’t my forte, and Math was always my weakest subject in school, but pair them with Andy Weir’s writing & R.C. Bray’s narration, and soon you too will be endorsing this title with zeal.

This story is told via a series of log entries from Mark Watney’s POV, with intermittent JPL/NASA, Hermes, etc narratives. It was funny, dire, hopeful, scientific, and so much more. The protagonist makes good use of his mechanical engineering & botanist background which lead to a lot of technical jargon that even laymen like me could appreciate. The hero’s fight for survival was one that every human can relate to, and his ability to laugh in the face of adversity was oftentimes the difference between life & death.

You’d think that a novel that’s restricted to a habitat, a rover, and a deserted planet as locales, and one character all by his lonesome would get tedious in the long run, but if you’re Weir that’s all you need. Mark Watney made this book for me with his sarcastic sense of humour, and MacGyver-like ingenuity. His last name really should have been Murphy because anything that can go wrong, will—at the worst possible moment. From magic duct tape, to pondering the accurateness of Aquaman, to solving terminal velocity à la Iron Man; you will fall in love with Watney.

I can’t say with utmost certainty, but I’m 99.9% positive that the calculations would have bored me to tears if it weren’t for R.C. Bray’s enthusiastic performance. The protagonist celebrates victories with yays, and setbacks with boos, and those emotions came through loud and clear in Bray’s tone. Saving Mark eventually became a world-wide effort, and as a result, the narrator had to cycle through tons of accents including Hindu, German & Chinese, and he aced them all. Unless you’re a whiz, I’d recommend listening over reading to most.

THE MARTIAN was passed on to me, and now it’s my turn to do the same for you. You’re welcome.

Was this review helpful to you? If so, please vote for it on Amazon or like it on GoodReads!


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Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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23 responses to “Audiobook Review: The Martian by Andy Weir

  1. Thanks to you and The Bookaholic Cat, I too took a visit to Mars with Andy Weir and R. C. Bray. I also talked my best friend and two sons into reading it. I mean “reading” it. One doesn’t do audio books and the other after seeing The Martian trailer said he wanted to imagine the whole story in Matt Damon’s voice.
    One of the sons is definitely a Maths geek. So he had no problem with the “science” of it but the other I really didn’t think he’d read it. He not only read it but devoured it.
    The book was outstanding but in my mind, R. C. Bray made it exceptional. It’s one book I’ll never forget!!
    Great review!!!

  2. Mogsy from BiblioSanctum  

    It’s so great, right?!! The other day someone asked me for a sci-fi audiobook recommendation and I immediately said this one. It was my first audiobook narrated by R.C. Bray but he’s become a favorite – he nailed the voice of Mark Watney. Can’t wait for the movie.
    Mogsy recently posted…Book Review: The Pyre by David Hair

  3. Hey Carmel, I happened to see your review of this and needed to comment that I LOVED it, too! I don’t normally like hard sci-fi stuff with lots of technical details either, but, man, I loved this audiobook. I agree. Not sure I’d have been able to make it past all the technical details if it weren’t for the fantastic narrator. So anyone on the fence about this, I’d definitely listen to it rather than read it.

    I cannot wait for the movie! Did you happen to catch the author talk at Google headquarters? I saw it on Youtube a few months ago. He tells the story of how he self pubbed it on his website and got so many requests that he had to put it up on Amazon. Then it sold like gangbusters and the publishers came a knocking. LOL He actually wrote a program calculating the orbits of the Earth and Mars to make sure his time frames were accurate. O_O
    Laurie London recently posted…Don’t Miss This Big Paranormal Romance Sale

  4. Pili from In Love With  

    I have heard so many amazing reviews for this one, and I’ve had it in my TBR pile (well, technically my Kindle library but it’s all the same thing really) since last year! So really, it’s about time I read it!

    Thank you for the fantastic review and the push to move this one up on my TBR pile finally!
    Pili recently posted…BEA 2015 Recap: Thursday – Day 2!!