Artemis by Andy Weir
Published by Crown/Archetype on November 14, 2017 (expected)
Genre(s): fiction, adventure, science fiction
Format & Length: e-book, 384
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The bestselling author of The Martian returns with an irresistible new near-future thriller—a heist story set on the moon
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.
Andy Weir first appeared on my radar when I began seeing previews for the movie adaptation of his debut novel, The Martian. And I enjoyed that book so much that when I discovered he was coming out with Artemis, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it!
Well, I’m not sure what I expected, but this story wasn’t it. The blurb is nicely succinct and yet, I wasn’t quite prepared for what I wound up reading. Every so often, a plot twist would take the story in an entirely different direction that almost took it into another genre for me. And although I presume it’s intended to be categorized as an adult novel, this read more like a young adult to me. I haven’t seen anyone else have this opinion, so maybe it’s just me, and feel free to take that with a grain of salt.
As I think about Artemis, I can’t seem to help myself in comparing it to The Martian, so apologies in advance if you haven’t read that yet (but there will be NO spoilers for either book).
The writing in Artemis reeks of Weir’s tone and sense of humor. He most definitely has a style, and it was present here. Much like the Martian, there is a LOT of science, and while a lot of it worked for me (especially in the world building), in some parts it began to get in the way of the storytelling. The main character, Jazz, is a 26 year old woman who thinks and speaks like a teenage boy. I don’t necessarily have an issue with this as I have a few female friends who are in their thirties with the sense of humor of 16 year old boys. However, it did very much remind me of Mark Watney from The Martian and made me wonder if Weir simply did not stretch himself much in creating Jazz or if that is, in fact, his limit. In addition to Jazz, there is a fair sized cast of characters and although some were more complex than others, they were all unique and their relationships are explored through the lens of this caper.
Despite my few misgivings, I thoroughly enjoyed the fast paced, twisting plot and the cast of characters in Artemis. I just found it to be so utterly entertaining! If you enjoy Weir’s writing and like your science fiction strong on the science, this just might be up your alley.
*Thanks to the publisher for providing an arc of this edition via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.