- Apr 24, 2018
We all know Andy Weir for his well researched and very human portrayal of the shipwrecked astronaut in the book and film "The Martian". "Artemis" is a more recently released book (2017) that I read this weekend.
Artemis is the 1st person narration of the hijinks gone too far of young moon base resident Jazz as she uses her considerable intelligence to do the wrong thing in a series of illegal escapades that nearly kill everyone in the only lunar city. In many ways, your basic ethical criminal caper story.
Overall, the book reads a bit more innocently than The Martian, as if it was written earlier or written to be more accessible - almost like YA. But what it lacks in sophistication it makes up for in being so pleasant to read. A page turner.
As you would expect from Weir, the plot revolves around the realistic mechanics and economics of life on the only moon settlement - tourism, aluminum, glass and oxygen industries. The small population of the city keeps the cast more mainstream as there is no room for vat-grown ninjas, theoretical physicists, space captains or gun runners. The characters are mainly tourists, administrators and technicians. It is provincial in feel without seeming unrealistic - like a story set in an out of the way small town.
For Hard SF fans there is reasonable amount of good science and engineering, for people who like good characters the protagonist is cheeky and interesting. The only reason I think anyone would dislike the book is because it has a certain naivete that reminds me of Podkayne of Mars. If you just pretend you're reading a 40 year old story you might feel comforted.
This would be a great book for a long plane ride. Fun, reasonably gripping and with enough clever details to make you think about the book when it is over.
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