Project Hail Mary is a new hard science fiction novel by Andy Weir the author of the Martian. I received an early copy through NetGalley. The story follows Ryland Grace the only survivor on a mission to save Earth and humanity and he is the worlds last hope. However, he doesn’t know that because he doesn’t remember his name or what he’s supposed to do on this mission. But its up to him and an unexpected ally to find the solution to an extinction level event that threatens all life on Earth.
Project Hail Mary is very had to talk about without spoiling some aspects of the plot and story. I really like book though most of the science went over my head. Ryland Grace is much more of a Mark Watney style character so if you liked the Martian I would recommend this book. At this point to say anything else I will be getting into spoilers so stop reading if you don’t want to know anything more.
The story is told through Ryland Grace’s perspective but switches between current events and the memories of his past that tells the read who he is and why he is on this mission. Because he doesn’t have his memories we are thrown into the story and learn with him what is going on. Through the flash backs we learn that something is causing the Sun of get dimmer and if not stopped then it will cause catastrophic problems on Earth. It is soon determined that this is happening because of an organism called Astrophage is feeding on the energy of the Sun. I’m not going to discuss any of the science of the book because that is one aspect that I had trouble understanding but I got the overall plot, relationships, and emotions of the characters. Grace determines that he is on this space ship because they were headed to the one location that the Astrophage do not seem to be affecting.
Shortly, after waking up and remembering what he is meant to do Grace sees another space craft that he knows can’t be from Earth. He ends up communicating with the other space craft and meets an alien life form that is very different from humans. Grace calls him Rocky. They learn how to talk to each other and together the figure out how the Astrophage work and how to stop them. As they figure out what they need to do Grace finally gets back all of his memories and why he is on the ship which he now knows is a suicide mission. I don’t want to spoil the whole ending but together Grace and Rocky save their planets and Grace gets to do what he’s best at in the end.