Jazz, a women from Saudi, has been living on the Moon since she was six. Now in her twenties she lives on just the wrong side of the law, generally a good person, but willing to break the rules with a few side hustles in order to get by. In D&D terms she is basically Neutral Good, maybe even Chaotic Good. She is a fun loving, wise cracking individual who struggles to be serious, much to the annoyance of her Moon colleagues who take the Moon’s health and safety rules extremely seriously. As Bob Lewis, the grumpy ex-marine and head trainer of the EVA guild says, “the Moon’s a mean old bitch. She doesn’t care why your suit fails. She just kills you when it does.”
Jazz dreams of a more easy going and wealthy future where she no longer has to sleep in her dingy little cell the size of a coffin fifteen floors underground. Jazz describes Artemis, as “the first (and so far, only) city on the moon. It’s made up of five huge spheres called “bubbles”. They’re half underground, so Artemis looks exactly like old sci-fi books said a moon city would look: a bunch of domes. You just can’t see the parts that are underground.” It’s a city of two thousand people in a space half a kilometre across.
The story starts with Jazz doing her EVA (extravehicular activity) exam and things don’t go well from the get go. This was one of her schemes to improve her life. Once you have your EVA license you can lead tours for tourists and that brings in the big bucks. This is also when we are introduced to her MacGyver like resourcefulness that will come in useful later in the story.
Jazz is offered a job by a rich but shady character and she can’t resist but take the bait even though she knows she shouldn’t. The story then descends into a fun and disaster prone crime caper and black comedy, whilst a wider plot emerges about control of the moon. It’s full of the hard science and problem solving that Andy Weir used successfully in his debut novel “The Martian” which means you’re getting a crash course on some of the real challenges of living on the Moon.
There are a bunch of interviews for Artemis but my favourites are on The Verge and Tor. I also came across this video Andy Weir did for a Google Talks.
Read this if your’e a fan of murder mystery’s, black comedy and disaster movies with a slice of real science especially around working in low gravity and a space vacuum.
A great fast paced plot with quirky characters. It was a fun read located in an interesting space environment and you will definitely get a feel for some of the challenges of living on the moon.
Publisher: Del Rey
Year Published: 2017
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