Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

Published: 2021 1. First lines. 2. Cover: Penguin Random House 3. Venus [CC BY 2.0] via flickr 4. Spaceship interior [Public Domain] via Pxfuel

The Sun is losing its strength, threatening life on Earth. Scientists believe an alien life-form is responsible, and a mission far into space is hastily planned to save Earth. High school teacher and scientist Ryland Grace is on the spaceship Hail Mary with a crew tasked with saving humanity by finding and neutralising the alien life-form’s effect on the Sun.

“Modifying an alien life-form. What could possibly go wrong?”

BOOK SNAPS: This book has been described as “an engaging space odyssey” (New York Times), “a story of courage and friendship and discovering oneself” (Washington Independent Review of Books), and “nothing short of a science-fiction masterwork” (Kirkus). It’s all of these things, although I had to allow myself to “blur” over the science which was, to me, over-explained. I agree with Washington Independent Review of Books‘ assessment that the book is too long.


We’re as smart as evolution made us. So we’re the minimum intelligence needed to ensure we can dominate our planets.”

“But I have to save humanity first. Stupid humanity. Getting in the way of my hobbies.”

“I don’t want to look dumb in front of an alien.” 

Adaptation: Actor Ryan Gosling plans to produce and star in a movie directed by filmmaking duo Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.

Author: Andy Weir

Published by Penguin Australia

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