Project Hail Mary

A Novel

hardcover, 496 pages

English language

Published May 4, 2021 by Ballantine Books.

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4 stars (14 reviews)

Ryland Grace is the sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission--and if he fails, humanity and the earth itself will perish.

Except that right now, he doesn't know that. He can't even remember his own name, let alone the nature of his assignment or how to complete it.

All he knows is that he's been asleep for a very, very long time. And he's just been awakened to find himself millions of miles from home, with nothing but two corpses for company.

His crewmates dead, his memories fuzzily returning, he realizes that an impossible task now confronts him. Alone on this tiny ship that's been cobbled together by every government and space agency on the planet and hurled into the depths of space, it's up to him to conquer an extinction-level threat to our species.

And thanks to an unexpected ally, he just might have a chance.

Part scientific mystery, …

5 editions

Project Hail Mary

4 stars

After reading The Mote in God’s Eye, I realized that Garrit Franke, a fellow Fosstodon member, finished reading this book, so I decided to give it a try too.

I have to admit that at first I was a little bit hesitant about this book, because it is a written in first person, and it also starts out with ammnesia and also flashbacks. But after that I got used to the writing style pretty quickly and started to really get into the main story and the mystery behind everything happening around our protagonist.

The story follows a lone astronaut that finds himself facing impossible odds every step of the way. The way the plot is revealed and how it moves forward every chapter is great. The scientific elements are pretty accurate and that was something I found really interesting. It reminded me a lot of Jules Verne’s novels that usually …

Suspend your disbelief and like math, I guess.

2 stars

I'm not a math nerd, but if I were, this would have been more like 4 stars. I am, however, other kinds of nerd and I found the non-math parts of the book to be absolutely bonkers, but not in the joyful way. Weir has given us a protagonist with zero backstory. And I don't mean his amnesia. He ends up remembering how he got on the ship, but apparently those few months were all there was to his life. There's no family, no friends, no flings, no hobbies, no likes or dislikes--and mind you, the book is almost 500 pages in length. When he does finally make a friend, he doesn't even notice that it's the first friend he's ever had. There's no emotional interiority to this guy at all. He's just there to solve puzzles. This is truly science fantasy, not science fiction. There's nothing believable about the …

Review of 'Project Hail Mary' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

In Project Hail Mary, the sun is going out. Huge bummer. We also don't know why, and it's happening to many stars in the local area of the galaxy. But we figure out why! And we also find one system where the star ISN'T going out even though it should. So we gotta throw together a ship and crew as quickly as possible to investigate, find a solution, and get it back to Earth in time to save the sun. Enter Ryland Grace, one of the crew members of this ship. He doesn't know any of that though, because he woke up on the space ship billions of miles from home without his memory. As his memory returns, he has to work to figure out who he is, what he's doing, and how to save his home. After a shocking discovery in this alien solar system, he has new exciting …

Review of 'Project Hail Mary' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

What a lovely read this was... I tend to read some pretty heavy sprawling-plot sci-fi, and came at this knowing virtually nothing about it other than having seen The Martian in the cinema. As such, I found the small, contained nature of the story (despite the huge consequences in the background) to be thoroughly refreshing. I was smiling throughout and constantly wanting to read on to find out what happened next. I was up 'til 1am last night because I got close to the end and just had to keep going. Excellent.

The Martian 2.0

5 stars

While there are some new developments in this one, it very much feels like another 'The Martian' with a slightly different story. The protagonist is almost the same exact character and a bunch of the other elements feel very similar. I'm still happy with this book, because the elements that are new, are wonderful.

The 'The Martian formula' made some plot points a bit predictable, but I think he did a very good job on this one. This may seem like I'm bashing the book, it's still a fantastic read. I hope he is not sticking too much to his formula in the future, because it was noticeable, though this was still an absolutely worthwhile story to jump into. Please don't stop writing.

Review of 'Project Hail Mary' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

The plot twist around Ryland's amnesia is great!
"Space amoeba" story done right.
Relationship between Ryland and Rocky is endearing.
Audiobook elevates the whole experience.

Protagonist with amnesia trope has been done before.
Rocky has interesting alien physiology & boring human psychology.
* Earthbound story-line and characters seem childish & oversimplified compared to science in space sequences.

Pure entertainment

5 stars

I think this will be the book I recommend the most this year. It is entertaining from beginning to end. If you like sci-fi or space stories, read it. If you don't, read it anyway because you will laugh. It is very rare that I tear through a book in the span of a day, but, and I apologise for the cliché, I could not put this book down.

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3 stars