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Project Hail Mary : a novel
2021
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The sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission to save both humanity and the earth, Ryland Grace is hurtled into the depths of space where he must conquer an extinction-level threat to our species. - (Baker & Taylor)

The sole survivor on a desperate, last-chance mission to save both humanity and the earth, Ryland Grace is hurtled into the depths of space when he must conquer an extinction-level threat to our species. - (Baker & Taylor)

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of The Martian, a lone astronaut must save the earth from disaster in this “propulsive” (Entertainment Weekly), cinematic thriller full of suspense, humor, and fascinating science—in development as a major motion picture starring Ryan Gosling.

HUGO AWARD FINALIST • ONE OF THE YEAR’S BEST BOOKS: Bill Gates, GatesNotes, New York Public Library, Parade, Newsweek, Polygon, Shelf Awareness, She Reads, Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal • “An epic story of redemption, discovery and cool speculative sci-fi.”—USA Today

“If you loved The Martian, you’ll go crazy for Weir’s latest.”—The Washington Post


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, Ryland realizes that an impossible task now confronts him. Hurtling through space on this tiny ship, it’s up to him to puzzle out an impossible scientific mystery—and conquer an extinction-level threat to our species.

And with the clock ticking down and the nearest human being light-years away, he’s got to do it all alone.

Or does he?

An irresistible interstellar adventure as only Andy Weir could deliver, Project Hail Mary is a tale of discovery, speculation, and survival to rival The Martian—while taking us to places it never dreamed of going. - (Random House, Inc.)

Author Biography

Andy Weir built a two-decade career as a software engineer until the success of his first published novel, The Martian, allowed him to live out his dream of writing full-time. He is a lifelong space nerd and a devoted hobbyist of such subjects as relativistic physics, orbital mechanics, and the history of manned spaceflight. He also mixes a mean cocktail. He lives in California. - (Random House, Inc.)

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Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* For those who found Artemis (2017) to be something of a letdown after his much-loved The Martian (2014), Weir returns with gusto. The sun is dying, abruptly and rapidly. Within decades, humanity is going to be wiped out. Survival of the species depends on a lone astronaut who is far from home, unsure of where he is or how to tackle the monumental task that lies before him. Weir's scientific and technical savvy lends the proceedings an air of authenticity, and his portrayal of an ordinary man full of fear and self-doubt thrust into the role of humanity's last hope strikes just the right note. In many ways, this is a thematic sequel to The Martian; both are stories of individuals battling for survival against extraordinary odds and dealing with loneliness and desperation. In Artemis, it seemed like Weir was trying too hard, but here his writing flows naturally, and his characters and dialogue crackle with energy. Weir is no longer the self-published wunderkind of The Martian; with this novel, he takes place as a genuine star in the mainstream sf world.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Weir returns to the style and themes of his mega-hit debut, The Martian. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews

Weir's latest is a page-turning interstellar thrill ride that follows a junior high school teacherâ€"turnedâ€"reluctant astronaut at the center of a desperate mission to save humankind from a looming extinction event. Ryland Grace was a once-promising molecular biologist who wrote a controversial academic paper contesting the assumption that life requires liquid water. Now disgraced, he works as a junior high science teacher in San Francisco. His previous theories, however, make him the perfect researcher for a multinational task force that's trying to understand how and why the sun is suddenly dimming at an alarming rate. A barely detectable line of light that rises from the sun's north pole and curves toward Venus is inexplicably draining the star of power. According to scientists, an "instant ice age" is all but inevitable within a few decades. All the other stars in proximity to the sun seem to be suffering with the same afflictionâ€"except Tau Ceti. An unwilling last-minute replacement as part of a three-person mission heading to Tau Ceti in hopes of finding an answer, Ryland finds himself awakening from an induced coma on the spaceship with two dead crewmates and a spotty memory. With time running out for humankind, he discovers an alien spacecraft in the vicinity of his ship with a strange traveler on a similar quest. Although hard scientific speculation fuels the storyline, the real power lies in the many jaw-dropping plot twists, the relentless tension, and the extraordinary dynamic between Ryland and the alien (whom he nicknames Rocky because of its carapace of oxidized minerals and metallic alloy bones). Readers may find themselves consuming this emotionally intense and thematically profound novel in one stay-up-all-night-until-your-eyes-bleed sitting. An unforgettable story of survival and the power of friendshipâ€"nothing short of a science-fiction masterwork. Copyright Kirkus 2021 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews

Bestseller Weir (The Martian) delivers a suspenseful portrait of human ingenuity and resilience in this powerful narrative of a desperate effort to save Earth. Ryland Grace awakens from a coma with no memories of his identity or how he came to be alone on a spaceship. Weir creates instant engagement by toggling between Grace's efforts to make sense of his present circumstances and flashbacks that gradually paint an unsettling picture of his life before. Grace worked as a microbiologist until the negative response to his theory that water may not be required to sustain alien life drove him from his research to a job teaching middle school science. That career is disrupted, however, after astronomers discover that the sun is losing heat, imperiling the future of humanity. The cause seems to be a microscopic life-form that feeds on the star's energy, and Grace is drafted into the international team of scientists working to combat the impending catastrophe. Weir cleverly doles out pieces of Grace's backstory and information about the mission that landed him in space, tossing in curveballs and judiciously using humor to break the tension as the story builds to an unexpectedly moving ending. This is a winner. Agent: David Fugate, LaunchBooks Literary. (May)

Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly.

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