Project Hail Mary is a science fiction novel about, you guessed it, the end of the world. The novel begins with a man in a room, hooked up to a machine. He is disoriented and unaware of his own name. Through scientific discovery – trial and error – he discovers that he is on a spaceship and is the lone survivor of a mission to another star system. Gradually, his memory returns and he recalls that is name is Ryland Grace and he is on a ‘Hail Mary’ mission to discover why our sun is dying.
The novel is really just a series of experiments which are explained in a compelling narrative way. At every step in the story, Grace is faced with a problem that needs to be solved. Who knew the scientific method could be so engaging?
The novel jumps back and forth throughout from the ‘present day’ on the spaceship to the time leading up to the journey. As the story is pieced together, it gets more and more complex and compelling.
As great as this story was, it was made all the more enjoyable by excellent narration on audio book. All hail the narrator: Ray Porter. He did a stellar job on very tricky source material. Without spoiling much, this novel does involve a ‘first contact’ situation. Communication is so interesting.
I’m hesitant to go into any more detail as I feel this is a story best enjoyed ‘blind’. It unfolds so well and is so skillfully crafted, it seems silly to go into specifics.
Overall, a solid 5 EVA suit maneuvers out of 5.