The book's blurb on both Goodreads and Amazon:
Apollo 13 meets Cast Away in this grippingly detailed, brilliantly ingenious man-vs-nature survival thriller, set on the surface of Mars.
Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first men to walk on the surface of Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first man to die there.
It started with the dust storm that holed his suit and nearly killed him, and that forced his crew to leave him behind, sure he was already dead. Now he's stranded millions of miles from the nearest human being, with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive--and even if he could get word out, his food would be gone years before a rescue mission could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old "human error" are much more likely to get him first.
But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills--and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit--he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. But will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?
This book is all encompassing because it shows how Earth is reacting to the situation. The media and NASA all play big parts in attempting to talk to and bring Watney home. Could you imagine a guy stuck on Mars? It would be a media frenzy.
Despite the odds, Mark Watney stays semi-optimistic and he's absolutely hilarious. He's a smart guy, the crew's botanist, and is able to make repairs as things continually break. A good portion of this novel is written in "logs" that Watney writes. Here's a taste of his personality:
“Yes, of course duct tape works in a near-vacuum. Duct tape works anywhere. Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped.”
“I can't wait till I have grandchildren. When I was younger, I had to walk to the rim of a crater. Uphill! In an EVA suit! On Mars, ya little shit! Ya hear me? Mars!”
“The screen went black before I was out of the airlock. Turns out the “L” in “LCD” stands for “Liquid.” I guess it either froze or boiled off. Maybe I’ll post a consumer review. “Brought product to surface of Mars. It stopped working. 0/10.”
“I started the day with some nothin’ tea. Nothin’ tea is easy to make. First, get some hot water, then add nothin’.”
“Fortunately, when you spend a lot of time in space, you learn how to shit in a bag.”
I'm not telling what happens so you might as well read this yourself. You will have fun reading this. And, it will make you think. And please, read this before the film comes out. I really don't know how I feel about Matt Damon playing Mark. Ugh.