I heard lots of good things about Andrew Weir's The Martian, and after reading Katiebabs' review of it the other day and needing a change from romance/UF and fantasy - I thought I would take the plunge and read it. I rarely read straight up science fiction, especially with the emphasis on hard science. But I really enjoyed it because of the main protagonist, whose narration is filled with self deprecating and snarky humour as well as pacey action that keeps the plot flowing really well.
I actually found myself enjoying the science elements and it was explained in a fun way which was due to the hero's, Watney's narration. I think without that aspect, the book would have been dry and kind of boring for me. Instead I was really engaged and loving how Watney survived on an harsh environment with his brains and humour. I also enjoyed the supporting cast of characters, from his crew members and the people who helped run the mission from Houston. They also added to the humour as well as dealing with the internal and international politics of dealing with mission gone wrong.
If I have any criticism, it would be the fact that it was stretching things with how everything went wrong in the story for Watney and from Mission Control. But that's a minor niggle, because it helped to draw out the tension and suspense on his survival and it made it an engrossing read.
Overall, I don't usually read straight up SF, I needz some romance in the story, but I am really glad I picked this up and I will definitely be watching out for the next book, because this was a fun and enjoyable read with a tightly paced plot.