Happy Bookers Discussion Group

The Happy Bookers is Phillipsburg Library’s monthly book discussion group.  We meet on the fourth Wednesday of the month at 7:00 p.m.  Newcomers are always welcome, and no registration is necessary.  Call the library at 908-454-3712 for more information.

Next Meeting:
Wednesday, April 26 at 7:00 p.m.

The Martian by Andy Weir

An edge-of-your seat debut thriller with laugh-out-loud dialogue mixed in. After a bad storm cuts his team’s Mars mission short, injured astronaut Mark Watley is stranded. Now he’s got to figure out how to survive without air, shelter, food, or water on the harsh Martian landscape until the next manned mission in four years. It’s Science Fiction with a capital S, but Weir does a fabulous job of making it accessible to non-science geeks. “Weir has created the perfect mix of action and space adventure. Mark is hilarious, which makes the terror of marooned death on Mars not just bearable but downright fun.” (Library Journal).


Discussion Questions

  1. What makes us root for a character to live in a survival story? In what ways do you identify with Mark? How does the author get you to care about him?
  2. Do you believe the crew did the right thing in abandoning the search for Mark? Was there an alternative choice?
  3. What are some of the ways the author established his credibility with scientific detail? Which of Mark’s solutions did you find most amazing and yet believable?
  4. Who knew potatoes, duct tape, and ‘70s reruns were the key to space survival? How does each of these items represent aspects of Mark’s character that help him survive?
  5. How is Mark’s sense of humor as much a survival skill as his knowledge of botany?

Questions excerpted from Reading Group Guides

Web Links


Upcoming Selections

  • Man Gone Down by Michael Thomas
  • Hillbilly Elegy by J. D. Vance

Suggest a book for discussion

Can’t make the meeting? Visit our Happy Bookers Group on Goodreads and add your thoughts there!