Monday, November 6, 2017
Published November 2017 by Crown/Archetype
Source: my copy courtesy of the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review
Jazz Bashara is a criminal.
Well, sort of. Life on Artemis, the first and only city on the moon, is tough if you're not a rich tourist or an eccentric billionaire. So smuggling in the occasional harmless bit of contraband barely counts, right? Not when you've got debts to pay and your job as a porter barely covers the rent.
Everything changes when Jazz sees the chance to commit the perfect crime, with a reward too lucrative to turn down. But pulling off the impossible is just the start of her problems, as she learns that she's stepped square into a conspiracy for control of Artemis itself—and that now, her only chance at survival lies in a gambit even riskier than the first.
A couple of years ago, we gave Weir's The Martian to Mini-him for Christmas. He read it, passed it along to us, and it sat on the shelf for two years. Until a couple of months ago when I read it and thoroughly enjoyed it. Just in time to find out that Weir's latest, Artemis, was available for review so I immediately downloaded it. Then got very nervous that it wouldn't live up to its predecessor. So, how did it live up to my expectations?
Set in space? Check.
Yes, yes, I know the whole point of grown up books with descriptive words is to paint a picture in the reader's mind of what the scenes look like. But, dang, I really wished this was a picture book so you know I can't wait until this gets turned into a movie. Which you know it will be.
Filled with humor? Check.
It's official. I'm pretty much in love with Andy Weir's sense of humor.
Loaded with tension? Check.
This time the it's not just space that's trying to kill our hero. There are actual people with actual weapons. And there's murder, and chase scenes, and a cop trying to take down our girl.
Also loaded with science? Check.
As with The Martian, I have no idea if all of the science rings true. It mostly sounds plausible enough and Weir writes it interestingly enough to make me want to read it and try to understand it.
But, this is also the only real problem I had with Artemis. It's set 100 years from now, right? But, on several occasions, Weir refers to devices and such that we use now. Based on the way that the world has changed in the past 100 years, I can't help but think that people wouldn't still be watching cable TV; that even for the older generation, laptop computers might be archaic; and that fiber optics might have been replaced by something we can't even imagine yet. Still, that's all a small enough thing, because...
Book I couldn't put down because it was so much fun? Check!
I adored Jazz, with all of her faults. And this time, Weir's lead character got to have real interactions with his other characters and I thoroughly enjoyed the relationships Jazz had with the men in her life. Did I like it as much as the first book? Maybe not quite; but, to some extent, that was only because I knew something of what to expect from Weir. Still, it's a a book I will happily recommend to anyone who enjoyed The Martian. In fact, I might just have to make this one a Christmas present for Mini-me as well!