he new one by Andy Weir of The Martian fame, a story of a crazy wild-girl living on a mundane suburban moon base. Which, as I write this, I see the irony the author was going for. And I like it.
So Jasmine Bashara has been wild in the past. She’s gotten into trouble with the Dudley Doright station security chief. She’s slept around and even burned her welder-father’s shop down. So let’s just say that their relationship is distant and cold. Now working as a porter (moving cargos from ships to destinations), she’s got plans to go big. Her small-time smuggling gig is getting her the ears of the right (or wrong) people and she’s open to pulling a get-rich-quick captor to get all she wants in one go.
But you know it’s not simple or straightforward, right? Otherwise you wouldn’t have books, you’d have pamphlets.
Overall, I liked the characters and the setting. Weir does capture a lot of what a hanging-on-to-existence settlement might be like. He’s got the moon down pretty well (through the picture on the cover surprised me in that it’s not (geographically) the moon that floats in our sky (it looks ‘moonish’, but that’s it)). Jazz’s dialog is fun and like as she chatters her way through her endeavors. The other characters (her father, the cop Rudy, her Earth-side pen-pal Kelvin) are all interesting and dimensional. So yes, a fun read. Not as deep and compelling as his earlier book – I’m not sure what was missing here but yeah, close but not quite.
And I know how these things work – almost happened to me with Fire and Bronze. There is a bit where she’s pulling the classic “how did you know he was shot” bit, where someone is tricked to reveal more than they should know. However, I blinked and looked back a page. No, Jazz, you actually said it yourself. I can see it in the text. So, woops, minor point there. And the end was a little frenetic and rushed, as if the main character was in the boss level of a video game (or the book was being written with a movie in mind). Just sayin’.
But really, it’s still a good book. If you want to learn all about the moon (and how it might be used) check out Artemis. Good fun on a cold lifeless rock.