Every so often, I read a book so good that I cannot, will not stop talking about it. I enter conversations with something like, “Hi, I’m Olivia. By the way have you read [insert life-changing book here]? It’s a rare and wonderful feeling (though probably annoying to most people around me, if we’re being honest), and it hasn’t happened to me in quite some time. Until now. So let’s get into it.
When I first picked up Project Hail Mary, it was on a whim. I figured… hey, I like space, astronauts, and the occasional alien intrigue subplot… why not? I, like many others, had read The Martian and loved it. I had also watched The Martian and loved it. Andy Weir’s writing is fun, conversational, and surprisingly breezy despite a solid chunk of it having to do with astrophysics (don’t let that scare you away — I say this as someone with the math skills of a cat). Though I love movies about space (I wish I could relive the experience of watching Interstellar and Arrival in theaters for the first time, to be honest), I don’t read much science fiction. The genre always felt a bit overwhelming to me, I think, kind of like fantasy. However, Project Hail Mary is single-handedly making me rethink that perspective.
I brought the hardback with me on vacation with zero expectations. A few people told me they loved it, but I try my best to not have overwhelming expectations when going into the book. Though it took a tiny bit of time to get into the meat of the book’s plot, once I did, I was completely in love with the story. I read the book in less than 24 hours and I was truly sad when it was over. I laughed, I cried, I fell in love with the characters in a way I haven’t in years. There were multiple points while reading that I set the book down on my chest and just marveled at how much it made me feel. I wanted to soak up every second of reading it for the first time.
Since finishing the book, I’ve had dozens of conversation in my DMs about just how good it is. I forced Jake to read it as soon as I finished it so we could talk about it (he loved it, too). I tell anyone and everyone I come in contact with to read the book. I can’t shut up about the thing. I think about the movie version of it once a week. In fact, the movie rights sold a year before the book was even released (that’s how good it is) and Ryan Gosling is already signed on to play the lead – need I say more? Anyway, this book is one of my all-time favorites, and I’m still thinking about it. So here I am.
If you’re looking for a story to get lost in that will remind you of the best parts of humanity and force you to savor every second of reading it, here it is. And yes, it is even better than The Martian (though you should read that too if you haven’t already).
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Immediately after reading, please message me so we can discuss how Rocky is the best character in modern fiction (IYKYK).
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