I read Ready Player One in pretty close proximity to The Martian (read before I joined CBR), and they were two of the more entertaining reads of the last few years. When Ernest Cline published Armada, I was out of my mind with anticipation. While I didn’t expect it to be another Ready Player One, I did get my hopes up.
And, like a lot of people, was let down.
So, since The Martian is so indelibly connected to Ready Player One, in my mind, I couldn’t help but worry that Andy Weir would also whiff on his follow up.
Well, for starters, the book has a more than a little in common with its predecessor. Both are hard science fiction, very heavy in the research. Both involve smartass characters who are brilliant and likable. Both involve characters in hostile environments cut off from earth.
Ernest Cline also followed up RP1 with a book that was very similar, stylistically from his breakout debut. As has already been mentioned, this didn’t work out for Armada, I had some concern for Artemis.
Both books even start with the same letter! Gah!
I’m pretty sure I’m overthinking this.
Artemis is set on the moon, about 50 years in the future. Jasmine is a smuggler, and the daughter of a welder and Saudi immigrant. She gets contracted to do some work for a wealthy, but crooked, businessman. Her job doesn’t go as planned, which leads her down a path involving murder, a Brazilian crime syndicate, welding, politics and a chance for redemption. Not necessarily in that order.
It’s an engaging and interesting read. Not as much as The Martian, perhaps, but still well worth the investment. There’s more character development and fewer potatoes, and plenty of complex planning involving science and engineering, so if that’s an itch you haven’t scratched since The Martian, you’re in for a fun ride.
I listened to the audiobook, read by Rosario Dawson. She’s awesome. I’ve been a fan of hers for years, and she does a great job giving personality to the different characters.