Thursday, February 22, 2018

Review - We Have Always Lived on Mars

We Have Always Lived on Mars
by Cecil Castellucci
Date: 2013
Publisher: Tor Books
Reading level: YA
Book type: short story
Pages: 32
Format: e-book

Nina, one of the few descendants of human colony on Mars that was abandoned by Earth, is surprised to discover that she can breathe the toxic atmosphere of the Martian surface. The crew, thinking that their attempts at terraforming and breeding for Martian adaptability have finally payed off, rejoice at the prospect of a brighter future. But Nina's about to unlock the mystery of the disaster that stranded them on Mars... and nothing will ever be the same.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This was a quick read, fairly predictable, and not all that original.

The writing is just so-so. The editing isn't great. People kept "laying" when they should've been "lying", and when someone was already lying on the ground, she said her knees buckled (huh?). Characters are sparse and not developed. The story raises a lot more questions than it answers. I prefer more answers. This story didn't offer nearly enough.

This was fine for a quick read, but it's not really something I'd want to read again or recommend.

Quotable moment:

We have been trying to infect the planet with life so that we can make it ours. But it is slow going. Sometimes there is moss.

Plot: 2/5
Characters: 2/5
Pace: 3/5
Writing & Editing: 3/5
Originality: 1/5

Enjoyment: 3/5

Overall Rating: 2.43 out of 5 ladybugs


  1. I love the way you break down your reviews into the various rating categories! Sounds like this one was a bit of a dud - appreciate the honest review.

    1. Thanks! Yeah, I need to break things down for the ratings. Otherwise, I might end up giving a too-high or a too-low rating, based simply on whether I enjoyed it or not. The whole thing is so subjective; what I didn't enjoy, someone else might (or vice versa).

  2. I always struggle with short stories, haha, I feel like I haven't really gotten into them before they end?! But agh that's frustrating there were continuity errors like that. :(

    1. I struggle with some short stories, too. Especially when they just seem like a chapter taken out of a longer work (which is not really the case here, but it's something I've encountered before). I have so many questions left unanswered!