Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir is, like The Martian, another "guy all alone in outer space" story. But, in this case he's a junior high science teacher who has a humorous inability to swear because he's used to substituting words like "fudge" for the worse option. Also, he's the only man who can save Earth. If he fails, oh well. Earth was nice while it lasted.
As the book opens the hero, Dr. Ryland Grace, is waking up inside a space ship. He has no idea where he is, how he got there, or what he's supposed to do. Throughout the book, his memory gradually returns and the reader goes back and forth between what's happening in the space ship and what led to the crisis that caused Dr. Grace — who was a consultant, not an astronaut — to end up on this mission.
There is an alien encounter in Project Hail Mary and it is absolutely delightful. You will fall in love with the alien and maybe cry a bit at the ending. Both the type of book ("guy stuck alone in space figuring out how to fix things") and the entertainment value are more along the lines of The Martian than Artemis, the latter of which I know people found disappointing (myself included, but I liked it more than most).
As in The Martian, there is a ton of math and science to wade through. This time, though, there are no potatoes. Just thought you'd like to know that. If you enjoyed The Martian, you'll love Project Hail Mary.
Highly recommended - Loved it, laughed out loud many times, didn't even come close to following all the math and science but (again, as in my last review) I was able to read between the lines enough to get the gist of most of it. I gave Project Hail Mary a full five stars because I was immensely entertained. I'm hoping this Weir book will be turned into a mini series. I think there's a bit too much that happens to cut it down to movie length.
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