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on 6 May 2011
If you are familiar with the Mars Trilogy, then this is a must-have: approximately 1/3 of the stories deal with an alternate reality within the storyline, where the 1st 100 never go to Mars. Another 1/3 cover the lives of a couple of natives from the late Red Mars to post Blue Mars timescale, giving a different perspective on the colonisation project. The last 1/3 covers miscellaneous stories, similar to the run-in stories within the chapters of the trilogy.

If you have never red the Trilogy, then this is not really a good entry point: I would recommend that you read the Trilogy through first.
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on 22 October 2013
Quite scientific but gloriously page turning. Characters are really filled out and it is not sentimental with its heroes. One of my all time favourite trilogys although I was a bit disappointed with the end but this really was trifling. I would recommend these books to anyone (even those not usually interested in science fiction - although the science may leave some people cold). I'm about to read it for the 3rd time and am sure I will still find it fascinating.
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on 28 October 2017
If you like HAMILTON read the chapter on the Martian Constitution
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on 14 November 2015
If you enjoyed the trilogy you'll enjoy this.
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on 16 November 2012
The Red, Green and Blue Mars trilogy has to be the definitive work on Mars colonization. This is not that! it's a 'companion' volume of short stories and novellas featuring the same characters and offering sometimes new revisions on some of the plots in the the trilogy. I confess, I bought this in error but have enjoyed it nevertheless. You must have read the original trilogy first though.
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on 31 October 2013
This is a more than enjoyable read. Time taken to let us know the characters, not much rocketry and physics although enough.

I am only half way into Red mars so far but will certainly carry on.
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on 2 May 1999
Okay, yes, I'll admit it - it was hard not to feel sad while reading this book, knowing that it was almost certainly the last time I'd be "on" Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars... like many fans of the epic trilogy of future martian colonisation and terraformation I've lost count of the number of tims I've read the books, they've become a very big and important part of my life, something I've grown up with in a way. So, when I opened the pages of THE MARTIANS for the first time it was with a mixture of excitement and fear, kind of the way you feel when you sit down to finally see a film you've been looking forwards to for sooooo long, wondering if it will live up to the hype or leave you disappointed...
I needn't have worried. THE MARTIANS is a fine climax to the series, and provides followers of the saga with a wonderfully moving "goodbye" to the Mars we've come to love so much.
This is a collection of short stories, essays, fictional documents and poems designed to both tie up loose ends and provide startling, intriguing glimpses into possible alternative KSR martian timelines... reading some of the stories offers tantalising glimpses of "What Might Have Been". Reading other parts of the book you learn about events from already-established Red Mars characters pasts' which have, until then, either only been hinted at or kept completely hidden. Other stories explore the physical and political landscapes of KSR's Mars through the eyes of new, original characters, or characters from previously-published - but hard to find - short stories set on KSR's Mars. The most common reactions I experienced while reading the book were: "Aaah, NOW I see..!" or "What?! I had no idea!" or even "You know, I actually wondered about that myself..."
As for the poems, they show the depth of Kim's love affair with Mars, and provide yet more background detail to the struggles of the colonists and terraformers. There's something for everyone in here: frustrated reds, impatient Greens, whatever your colour you're represented in the poetry.
I can definitely recommend THE MARTIANS to anyone already in love with KSR's Mars and its characters. Newcomers to the series definitely shouldn't start here however.
I didn't cry when I finished the book, just after midnight on the day I bought it, but probably only because of the clever way Robinson wraps the whole thing up in such a magically personal way. Instead I walked out into my yard and looked up at Mars itself, shining like a garnet above the trees, and wished it goodbye. For now. He'll be back, he won't be able to help himself. The guy's in love... :-)
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on 26 June 2013
I'm going to keep this short and sweet. [1] The Mars Trilogy is one of the most moving, depth-researched, fascinating and impressive novel sequences of the twentieth century.... Anyone intreasted in sf, literature or story telling in general must read these novels. [2] 'The Martians' is a collection of short stories; some beautiful, some merely intreasting, that willl inform, absorb and reward the reader of the trilogy.
Read the Mars Trilogy [please! you won't regret it!] then read this book.
Warning: You will not want it to end, nor say goodbye to Robinson's incredible characters.
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on 11 April 2014
There are some ok stories here, but nothing approaching the brilliance of the original trilogy. The real downside, however, is the inclusion of a over-long, tedious and just plain boring story about climbing a mountain. I'm sure some people find that sort of fiction wonderful, but it's not what a bought a science-fiction book for.
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on 11 November 2011
This appears to be the clippings left behind on the editing room floor from the 4 great Mars books. It should of been left there. Feels like the author trying to squeeze the last money possible from this idea.
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