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The Martian

Written by: Andy Weir
Narrated by: R. C. Bray
Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
5 out of 5 stars (1,067 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

2015 Audie Award WINNER, Science Fiction
2015 Audie Award Finalist, Solo Narration: Male
2014 Voice Arts Award Finalist, Science Fiction 

"One of the best thrillers I've read in a long time. It feels so real it could almost be nonfiction, and yet it has the narrative drive and power of a rocket launch. This is Apollo 13 times ten." -Douglas Preston, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Impact and Blasphemy 

"A book I just couldn't put down! It has the very rare combination of a good, original story, interestingly real characters and fascinating technical accuracy…reads like MacGyver meets Mysterious Island." -Astronaut Chris Hadfield, Commander of the International Space Station and author of An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth 

"The best book I've read in ages. Clear your schedule before you crack the seal. This story will take your breath away faster than a hull breech. Smart, funny, and whiteknuckle intense, The Martian is everything you want from a novel." -Hugh Howey, New York Times bestselling author of Wool 

"The Martian kicked my ass! Weir has crafted a relentlessly entertaining and inventive survival thriller, a MacGyver trappedon Mars tale that feels just as real and harrowing as the true story of Apollo 13." -Ernest Cline, New York Times bestselling author of Ready Player One 

"Gripping…shapes up like Defoe's Robinson Crusoe as written by someone brighter." -Larry Niven, multiple Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author of the Ringworld series and Lucifer's Hammer 

"The tension simply never lets up, from the first page to the last, and at no point does the believability falter for even a second. You can't shake the feeling that this could all really happen." -Patrick Lee, New York Times bestselling author of The Breach and Ghost Country 

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 plainold "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?"

©2012 Andy Weir (P)2013 Podium Publishing

What the critics say

  • Winner: 2015 Audie Award for Science Fiction
" The Martian is a crackling, often humorous, listen." ( AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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My Introduction to Reading

This book got me into listening to audiobooks. Listened to it 4 times in a row and never got bored. By far my favorite book ever.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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yup

narration amazing
story engrossing
dont miss out on this gem
this is an absolute must read

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great book, but aging rapidly.

It is the curse of all technology laden books. They age fast. It is amazing how a book written not 10 years ago is already out of date. The whole scenario, taking into account what we know now about Space-X and others (like the Chinese, the Europeans, Indians, Japanese) would no longer be realistic. If this happens in, say 2040, assuming companies like Space-X are here to stay and other agencies develop their programs) there would be plenty of boosters to send materials to Mars. Also, it is very unlikely that a bureaucracy like NASA will be calling the shots at that stage.

Of course, these comments will probably be outdated very soon when some new company comes to play or some other unforeseen stuff happens.

I know. it is SciFi. It is hard to pin it down, but I can see the author put a LOT of effort to create a very realistic scenario about issues faced on the planet that will probably reflect in the way the real mission will happen.

As it is, it is a wonderful book and far better than the movie.

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meh

struggled to finish. lots of scientific detail but not a ton of character development. it felt like every problem he encountered was an excuse for the author to explain his way out of it. good performance but had to do the last two hours at 1.5% speed to get through.

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good story

excellent book. the writer uses the word said a lot haha but overall with listening to

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  • CDL
  • 2019-05-02

Even better than the movie (and that’s a high bar)

Several humorous moments beyond the movie experience. Researched and made movie a bit boring. Of course RC Bray is the master of narration as always. Glad I listened to this even though it was after the movie.

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First Audible experience... Wow!

I really enjoyed the whole experience. A first for me and something I will be doing for a long time to come.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Martian and think it will be a tough act to follow.

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Excellent!

Narrator was great at creating the voices. For the space enthusiast and anyone interested in suspense. This book is definitely worth the purchase.

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Excellent narration!

I had already watched the movie, but wanted to check out the book too. I definitely don't feel I wanted my money or time. The narrator was perfect! The story was interesting and funny too. Highly recommended.

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I love this book

I love this book and read it 3 times in a row. Narrator is amazing and the whole story is great

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  • R. MCRACKAN
  • Raleigh, NC
  • 2017-12-08

Worth it even if you've seen the movie

Whenever I watch a movie before reading the book, the book is rarely enjoyable. Even if the book is better in every way, somehow my mind has already latched onto the film version. The Martian was a major exception. Even after having watched the movie many times, I loved this audiobook and am so glad I gave it a chance.

64 of 67 people found this review helpful

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  • Jim "The Impatient"
  • 2014-07-07

LOOK BOOBIES

DAMN IT JIM, I'M A BOTANIST
Lots and lots of science. Lots and Lots of funny. MacGyver on Mars. I Love Clarke, but even he could not write this well. He would be proud. Who'd Thunk, talking about Night Soil, Math, Chemistry, Biology, and so much more could be so entertaining. Get this book for your teenagers and they will be inspired. Give it to your friends and they will be entertained.

R.C. Bray just jumped to the top of every bodies favorite narrator list.

YES, OF COURSE DUCT TAPE WORKS IN A NEAR-VACUUM. DUCT TAPE WORKS ANYWHERE! DUCT TAPE IS MAGIC AND SHOULD BE WORSHIPED!!

270 of 309 people found this review helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • Davis, CA, United States
  • 2013-10-18

Potatoes, anyone?

I previously read this book on my Kindle and was so excited to see it was out on audio. This is one of the most enjoyable reading/listening experiences ever. It is different from the more typical science fiction. It is actually science AND fiction, combined with lots of humor and suspense. For me, it has everything !

I was initially disturbed when I heard the narrator's voice and reading style. It did not seem to fit the Mark Watney I read about and knew. However, as the book progressed, I think Bray slid comfortably into the role and did a masterful job of capturing the personality of our hero. He certainly added to the listening pleasure.

This book contains lots of technical jargon and hard science, yet it was put into simple enough terms so that I could easily follow the gist of what was going on. I would think this story would appeal not only to sci-fi loving engineers but to anyone who enjoys contemporary, realistic science-based fiction which, unfortunately, can be difficult to find during this period of zombie and vampire mania. And did I mention the humor?

Very highly recommended!

193 of 224 people found this review helpful

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  • Thomas
  • Colorado, USA
  • 2013-06-10

One of my freakin' favorites!

I've listened to this audiobook several times. There is so much going in this story, I can turn it on at any point, and just listen for hours.

Left for dead when his crew is forced to suddenly abort the mission, astronaut Mark Watley pits his formidable intelligence against everything the red planet throws at him.

Plenty of hard science for those like me who regularly read science fiction, but really, it doesn't matter if you're not used to reading science fiction. The characters usually explain what's happening.

The audiobook contains quite a lot of humor, and the narrator handles it beautifully. Very well done!

I have over 450 books in my Audible library, and this book is one of my top 10 reads of all time.

But if you don't like profanity, please don't buy the book, you wouldn't enjoy it.

So freakin' listen to it already!!!

263 of 315 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael G Kurilla
  • ROCKVILLE, MD, United States
  • 2013-06-21

Macgyver on Mars

Andy Weir's The Martian is a pure gem of a listen. Mark Watney, an astronaut who is part of an early Mars mission has been left for dead as his crew-mates were forced to abort their mission. Mark however has survived that initial catastrophe and is forced to go "Robinson Crusoe" to survive on a world intent on his demise. Eventually, NASA figures out that Watney is still kicking, but there is little they can do to assist. Watney battles the odds and works his way through one creative solution after another to survive and escape his potential fate as the first human casualty on Mars.

The time frame is the near future with little or no "new" science. The tale can become a bit "geeky" with explanations and calculations, but that is a major appeal of the story. Weir succeeds in crafting a believable series of events that create dramatic tension that ebbs and flows from start to finish. Watney is never out of the woods (or craters), but every new situations just comes out of nowhere. All along, Watney's composure and humor makes for an endearing character as he relates his experiences in a diary fashion. The supporting cast of Earth-side NASA personnel and Watney's Mars crew-mates are realistically portrayed with banter that comes off as genuine.

The narration is simply outstanding with an excellent range of voices and a tone that matches the tension inherent throughout the story. This will be a quick listen as the writing stye and delivery make for a can't put down quality.

285 of 343 people found this review helpful

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  • AudioAddict
  • 2014-09-24

Potty-mouthed astronaut with an attitude. Love it!

STORY (sci-fi) - As the summary suggests, Mark Watney has been abandoned by his crew and left on the surface of Mars. Unbeknownst to them, he is only injured and very much still alive. Mark, who had been the mission's botanist, must now try to survive alone on Mars till help arrives...if it does. What follows is a fast-paced, fascinating tale of survival. He must deal with finding shelter, food, water and breathable air, among other things. He must try to establish communications with NASA and survive sand storms, etc.

Mark is one of my favorite characters EVER. He's brave and smart, even kinda geeky. He works tirelessly and doesn't give up on his situation, and then there's his sense of humor! He's always making fun of his colleagues, himself or his situation, and he's not afraid of saying exactly how he feels. The opening line of the book, when he discovers he's been left behind alone on Mars, is: "I am so f**ked!" I enjoyed his unabashed irreverence but the language flows freely in this book, so it may not be for everyone.

The story is never dull. You will hear how he modifies everything from its original purpose to one fit for survival. (He's quite an inventor). You will hear the various plans that NASA scientists formulate for his rescue and you will hear why they fall by the wayside or fail. Finally (and without giving too much away) you will hear how Mark attempts a treacherous excursion across the planet to attempt a rendezvous with those on a mission to save his life. Great suspense!

PERFORMANCE - He was so perfect for this job! His delivery of Mark's sarcasm and humor was spot on. He also did a great job with various foreign accents possessed by NASA employees and fellow astronauts.

OVERALL - No sex (duh, he's alone on Mars), and no violence. Quite a bit of F-bombs, as mentioned above. I would recommend this book for everyone except children, for obvious reasons. I don't give five stars out freely, but this book is special.

74 of 89 people found this review helpful

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  • Demented Keep3r
  • 2017-12-17

Loved it!

Better than the movie in my opinion. Loved the narrator and his use of accents to portray the different characters. Would recommend this book to anyone with a sense of humor and is a sci-fi nerd.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Rory
  • Calgary, AB, Canada
  • 2014-12-18

Great Reward for a "Sure, Why Not?" Purchase

I read some of the previous reviews for this audiobook and noted the high ratings being given. As I'm waiting on a number of books to be released, I decided to see what all the fuss was about ... and was pleasantly surprised by how good this audiobook is.

I neglected to listen to the sample, as I thought I'd gleaned everything I needed from the other Listener's reviews. Didn't matter - RC Bray is absolutely fabulous, delivering all the emotion, comedy, and tension Andy Weir wrote into this book.

To say that anything that can go wrong WILL go wrong is generally an understatement in our day-to-day lives. Add in the fact that you're alone AND ON MARS takes the saying into a nuclear environment. Okay, not nuclear, but extremely hazardous. There are too many ways to be killed to count.

I don't know how many times I've had people looking at me on the train during my commute to/from work, as I laugh or smile or shake my head because of this book. I don't care, I'm having too much fun.

Do yourselves a favour and buy this audiobook. Take that chance and you won't regret it.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Ryan
  • Somerville, MA, United States
  • 2013-06-08

21st century castaway adventure... with SCIENCE!

This book is a lot of fun. Weir seems to have done a ridiculous amount of research into how a manned NASA Mars mission would probably work, and turns this knowledge into a suspenseful adventure with a likable protagonist and a healthy dose of humor. The story begins, in classic castaway fashion, from the journal entries of an astronaut named Mark Watney, who’s stranded on Mars after an emergency forces the rest of his fellow astronauts, who think him dead, to abort the mission and depart.

Now alone with his expedition’s equipment, including rovers, space suits, a habitat, and some botany experiments (but no radio), Watney must improvise ways to stay alive and contact Earth. A lot of science and engineering geekery soon follows, but Weir does such a good job of explaining it, using Watney’s informal voice and snarky, quip-ready “engineer” humor (the opening f-bomb sets the tone), that I don’t think it will be too hard for the average reader to understand. Being an engineer myself, I could easily relate to how this guy’s mind worked, as he took apart different systems and put them to use in ways they weren’t quite meant to be used, yet did so in a careful, controlled manner. I had one of many smiles at the part where he contemplates international law and decides that one of his actions makes him a pirate. A SPACE PIRATE! Yep, engineer.

I don’t think it’s much a reveal to say that the narrative eventually expands to include people back on Earth. If you recall the movie Apollo 13, a lot of similar action follows, as NASA and other organizations put their best minds to work on the problem of how to save Watney. I won't spoil the series of mishaps, setbacks, and narrow escapes that follow as he hangs on for a rescue attempt, but suffice to say that Weir makes good use of his setting and contrives some creative but plausible solutions. The supporting characters could have been developed a little more, but their banter is entertaining. Weir is clearly a fan of NASA, but isn't above poking fun at bureaucracy, PR machines, and the various personalities that inhabit the organization.

I hope someone sees fit to make a movie, because all the right ingredients are here. There’s a crowd-pleasing survival story and a likable hero. There’s a long-shot plan and a big-screen-ready nail-biter of a climax. And it's a heckuva a lot more believable than other Mars-themed stuff that Hollywood has given us (I'm looking at you, Red Planet). But, if there’s never a film, audiobook narrator RC Bray is the next best thing, with a boyish voice that's a perfect fit for Watney, and different affectations for his various quips.

149 of 190 people found this review helpful

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  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 2018-01-17

A Trip to Mars

I think everyone has read this book except me. The book finally worked its way to the top of my stack. Apparently, the book was originally self-published. It became a word of mouth hit and got picked up first by an audiobook publisher, Podium Publishers, then by a print publisher, Crown. Then it was made into a successful movie.

The protagonist, Mark Watney, is an astronaut. Mark and team members are on a month long scientific survey of Mars. A storm arrives and NASA’s Command orders the team to their MAV (Mars Ascent Vehicle) and back to their ship. Mark is injured and has communication problems. The team thinks he is dead and leaves without him. The story then becomes a survival story. As with most survival stories, it becomes a man against nature theme.

The book is well written and researched. The science is reasonably accurate. The character is interesting and the premise is intriguing. I think I have a generational gap as far as the language is concerned, for example, “3.6 pirate-ninjas” or “LOL Craaap!!” Otherwise, I enjoyed the story and its subtle humor.

The book is almost eleven hours. The audiobook won the 2015 Audie Award for Science Fiction and was the 2015 Audie Award finalist for Solo Narration. The audiobook also was the 2014 Voice Arts Award finalist in Science Fiction.
R.C. Bray does an excellent job narrating the book. Bray is a voice-over artist and is an Audie and AudioFile Earphone Award-winning narrator.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • BotBot
  • 2016-01-11

Un des meilleurs romans que j'ai lu

Définitivement une des meilleurs roman à ma connaissance.
Dans mon top 3 avec Ender's Game et ....
Mon top 2 finalement

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • acousson
  • 2015-11-05

un superbe lecteur

plus un acteur qu'un lecteur, R. C. Bray interprète formidablement le livre et nous tient en haleine même pendant les complexes calculs scientifiques du héros. Un vrai plaisir d'écoute.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • DEVELAY Cyrille
  • 2015-09-07

Loved it

Excellent book, great story and very good reader!!! This is a great Apollo 13 like story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-03-05

cool book

great book. the only flaw is when things are spelled out, I need a paper and pen to know what is said. not the best idea for an audio book. otherwise, great reading

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  • dahan
  • 2018-12-02

My favorite book and now audiobook as well

I just love this book!
I've read it when it came out, watched it when Ridley Scott made the movie adaptation, and listened to the audiobook twice in the last 3 years.

I will probably listen to it a few more times in the future. The format is perfect as the journal entry feels like a audio journal.

Quality performance from the narrator as well, a very enjoyable experience.

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  • Martijn Visser
  • 2018-09-15

Marvelous story telling.

Love the way the story is told and love that it's more detailed than the movie!

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  • mikus
  • 2018-08-22

Surprisingly technical

The book is quite exceptional. Not because of the story, which is pretty complete and even fairly realistic (except for the very beginning, which sounds rather naive), but because of the way its told.

It's built up mostly of the main character's log entries and contains tons of technical details of him solving numerous issues he encounters. It is still funny and entertaining + a lot happens, but for some it might be too heavy loaded with science and engineering. In those terms its really unique and very well done, but doesn't make it a lightweight book to chill and relax.

NOTE: you don't need to have any scientific background to read it, but it for sure makes it easier, especially if you want to understand all the situations, and not simply grasp the main plot.

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  • Juliet Jones
  • 2018-04-03

A MUST!!

I must've read the book twice already, I've watched it twice as well so the audiobook is a great addition!
The plot is amazing, the audio performance is fantastic.

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  • jeroen
  • 2018-04-02

great book

I really loved it. funny and exciting. the ending...... I don't know how I feel about it

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  • u5pj8
  • 2018-01-22

Très bonne histoire, très bien lue

Bien que connaissant le film, le livre apporte son lot de surprises. les rebondissements sont nombreux et on est tenu en haleine tout au long de l histoire.