Based around Mark Watney’s log updates on Mars and the NASA’s story back on earth, his story is essentially about one man’s survival. It was really riveting, I couldn’t stop reading. I loved the maths, chemistry and biology we had to go through, as Mark figured out how to survive and fix things to maintain life support. At the beginning of the book I found myself imagining Mark as someone who must be unlikeable, who must have been a bad person previously or whatever, that this might be a story of redemption. I’m not sure why, because that wasn’t true at all. It’s funny sometimes, how you read into things what your mind is clearly thinking about. Mark is actually a nice, well-liked guy, he has a great sense of humour that really comes through. It’s also his ability not to panic about things – I guess the fact he is writing logs after the fact has helped him to reflect and laugh at himself and the situation in a way you probably couldn’t if this was narrated in real-time.
I also felt throughout the story that there was the very real possibility that Mark may not make it. A real sense of danger that made the telling feel real.