books, movies

Artemis by Andy Weir – a review

Wait for the film.

That’s my advice.

Recall Matt DamonThe Martian. … Mark Watney, I mean.

Weir’s first book was a huge, surprise hit.

Yet Weir, who wears a jaunty cap and a cheery grin during most of his public appearances, says he is plagued by crippling self-doubt. What if he’s a one-hit wonder, he wonders? What if his just-released follow-up novel, “Artemis,” fails to measure up? Has his success been a fluke? Weir is clearly suffering imposter syndrome anxiety.

L.A. Times

The charm of The Martian was contrast between the down-to-earth, relatable protagonist and the fascinating hard science of travel to Mars.

In his second book Weir recreates Matt Damon … this time as a young, female Muslim  named Jazz.

You have to admire his attempt at diversity.

The title Artemis refers to the name of the first lunar city, population 2,000. His characters are members of the underclass of workers, criminals and opportunists.

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.


Many don’t find Jazz believable. But she’s a geeky 14-year-old boy’s dream girl. Profane. Irreverent. Bawdy, but there’s no sex. After all this book is written at a children’s level.

The plot is stupid too.

But it doesn’t matter. Weir won Best Science Fiction in the 2014 Goodreads Choice Awards for The Martian. And he wins again this year for Artemis.

Before he wrote it, Weir had a traditional print book deal. And because its 2015 adaptation of “The Martian” was such a success, 20th Century Fox has already agreed to turn “Artemis” into a movie, to be directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller (who previously directed “The Lego Movie” and “21 Jump Street”).

My guess is that Artemis will make an excellent film.

This book is not nearly as good as The Martian. But I did enjoy the detailed science included on how humans could live on the Moon.

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