Did you know Ridley Scott is adapting this book into a movie, due for 2015? Now that you definitely know, if you are thinking you would just wait for the movie and give the book a miss, think again! This book is one of the best books I have read in recent times. Yes, it’s not very philosophical, not filled with great quotes that you will like updating on your wall on your favourite social networking site, but it makes for great light reading, and Andy Weir has this flow which is so effortless, you will flow along with it.
The story starts when Mark Watney, an astronaut on the Ares 3 Mars mission, gets left behind on the planet, and the rest of the crew leave him behind on the MAV, the only vehicle capable of leaving Mars. So, he is basically left to die on the planet, well, until Earth finds out that he is alive on the planet… you see, they thought he was dead. But Watney doesn’t rely on Houston for survival, because he knows that they won’t be able to help him. So, can Watney live till the Ares 4 astronauts reach Mars? There is a problem, and it is that he doesn’t have enough food, and the equipment on which his survival depends, was made to last only around a month, and the Ares 4 still is a few years away from reaching Mars. Actually, they haven’t yet left Earth.
You have to go dive into the book for the rest, and believe me when I say this, it is something you won’t regret. You will start rooting for Watney along with the rest of the Earth. I did!
Did you know about the 2 Cormoran Strike books – The Cuckoo’s Calling & The Silkworm, before you came to know that JK Rowling had written the books and Robert Galbraith is actually her pseudonym? Chances are you did not!
Well, I have to make a confession before I continue. I am a huge Harry Potter fan. But Rowling just coming to the press and announcing to the world that Galbraith is really her seems to me to be no more than a lame attempt to increase the sales of her book. However, I also started reading the books after I heard that the books had been penned by Rowling. ‘The Silkworm’ was not yet out, and I started reading ‘The Cuckoo’s Calling’. I was pleasantly surprised by the book. It was unlike Rowling and very unlike the only other book by her outside of the Harry Potter verse, ‘The Casual Vacancy’, and it is a compliment since I hated Vacancy. I stopped reading Vacancy after a few pages, but this was not the case with Calling. The book starts with the death of a supermodel and the world would have you believe that she committed suicide, but did she? Well, you can trust Cormoran Strike, with his sidekick Robin, to get to the bottom of it all and dig out the truth. Strike really ‘strikes’ you as a very unconventional detective, what with his limp due to the fact that he lost one of his legs in the war. You will not fall in love with the character, but you will sure appreciate the way Rowling builds him up in the book. By the time you finish the book, you will be able to imagine him as a man of flesh and blood.
The Silkworm picks up after Calling, and continues the story. I am really not fond of books where the author just keeps the protagonist the same and changes the rest and pretend that nothing happened. So, full marks there Rowling. Here we deal with the sudden disappearance of an author. His wife comes to Strike and asks him to find her husband. Strike accepts the case because he pities the wife. And we are on into another wonderful case.