“It’s hard to run with a hundred kilograms of gear on — even in lunar gravity. But you’d be amazed how fast you can hustle when your life is on the line.”
Andy Weir is back with his unique and addicting blend of factual science fiction and smart ass humor. This time we’re not fighting for our life on Mars, but living in a city built on the Moon. Welcome to Artemis.
Meet Jasmine Bashara. Porter, smuggler, dreamer. All Jazz wants is to afford a living environment larger than her current coffin with a private bathroom. That isn’t asking too much, is it?
When one of her ridiculously wealthy clients proposes a job full of insane risk, Jazz knows she should say no. But who says no to the chance of a lifetime? The chance to pay off crippling debt and start a new life? Probably the same people who came up with the saying: careful what you wish for.
This particular job will demand that Jazz use all her technical skills and intellect in order to pull it off. That much she can handle. Finding herself in the middle of a power play for absolute control of Artemis was a little more than she bargained for. Jazz has to use every single trick she can think of to stay alive and figure out a way to save not just herself, but the entire lunar city.
“Always keep your bargains. He worked within the law and I didn’t, but the principle was the same. People will trust a reliable criminal more readily than a shady businessman.”
I loved Jazz. Loved her! She is smart and feisty, but is also incredibly suspicious of everyone around her. I thought Weir did an excellent job peeling back the layers to her distrust through her emails with life long pen-pal Kelvin. We get to see a different side than the one she shows the world. And as someone who is generally distrustful of the world around me, I related to her quite a bit.
As we unfold the mystery that is Jazz, we get to know the characters in her life. I really liked each of them, and found them all believable. But out of all of them, Martin Svoboda was probably my favorite.
“By the end of it I had a plan. And like all good plans, it required a crazy Ukranian guy.”
That crazy Ukranian is a delight to read! I loved every scene he was in. His nerdy exuberance and utter loyalty to Jazz constantly made me smile.
“Tell them about the plan!” Svoboda said. “I have all the visual aids ready!”
What’s not to love about a friend who not just supports your illegal and potentially immoral hijinks without question, but then prepares visual aids when it really matters?! He’s adorable.
Given how much science is actually in this book, I am impressed with how much went into the characters and world building. It’s very well balanced, and I never felt like the science went over my head or took away from the scene playing out on the page. That isn’t to say I could pass a science exam after reading it, but the level of detail is enough to make the entire thing feel real. And that’s something I really enjoy in my science fiction.
Weir has a way of injecting humor into all of his scenes, including the intense ones. This gives his books a distinct feel. Fun but interesting. It helps that he includes fun facts, a little addition that makes me laugh. Probably because I am very fond of fun facts.
“Fun fact: Oxidizing requires oxygen. Flint and steel won’t work in vacuum. All right. No need to panic.”
In all, I adored this book. Jazz felt like someone I would know and be friends with. She isn’t a girly girl. In fact, isn’t even overly feminine, which, as a woman who isn’t overly feminine, I appreciated. And no, I don’t think that’s because she was written by a man either. I found her to be exactly like many of my female friends and relished reading a female character that didn’t make me roll my eyes. Svoboda as the goofy sidekick made it even better. This pairing definitely melted my feminist heart.
I’ve officially decided that space capers full of sarcastic geniuses is the best thing ever. I need more of this exact combo! I was a fan of The Martian, and Artemis is exactly what I hoped it would be. Ever more the fan, I look forward to anything and everything Andy Weir wants to write!