Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir is a terrific novel – but it might appeal more to you if you enjoy scientific topics, especially as they apply to speed of light, gravity in space and the experimental process. (Andy Weir is also the author of The Martian, which became a very successful movie starring Matt Damon.) Project Hail Mary is 476 pages – which may cause some readers to lose interest, due to the time investment needed to read it.
Ryland Grace is a molecular biologist turned jr. high science teacher, who wakes up to find himself alone on a tiny spaceship. His memory is very fuzzy and his two crewmates are dead. Gradually, Grace’s memory returns – along with the chilling recollection that his mission was to help save Earth from a catastrophic event. Now his mission will have to be completed alone . . . or maybe not? Are there other lifeforms out in space? Are they friendly or not? Will he be able to communicate with any of them even if he does find them?
I loved the characterization of Ryland Grace – he is a ‘down to earth,’ normal human being with a good sense of humor and a love for his students back on Earth. The problem solving skills that he used were so interesting, and I loved his thought process, even though I am not a ‘science geek.’ I suspect that this book may make a great movie someday. Until then, I’m really glad I spent the time reading it!