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Martians Abroad

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  868 ratings  ·  247 reviews
A great new stand-alone science fiction novel from the author of the Kitty Norville series.

Polly Newton has one single-minded dream, to be a starship pilot and travel the galaxy. Her mother, the director of the Mars Colony, derails Polly's plans when she sends Polly and her genius twin brother, Charles, to Galileo Academy on Earth—the one planet Polly has no desire to visi
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published January 17th 2017 by Tor Books
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Meredith The book blurb says, "A great new stand-alone science fiction novel from the author of the Kitty Norville series." But if so, I'm even more disappoint…moreThe book blurb says, "A great new stand-alone science fiction novel from the author of the Kitty Norville series." But if so, I'm even more disappointed in Martians Abroad because it does end abruptly and has all the markers of being the first book in a series. (less)

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Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

3.5 stars

In MARTIANS ABROAD's version of the future, Mars has four colonies, all set up as independent business ventures. Polly and Charles Newton are the (nominally) twin children of the equivalent of one of Mars' colonies' President and/or CEO.

Nominally b/c:

. . . we were uncorked at the same time and grew up together. But I’m really older because my embryo was frozen first. My unique collection of DNA has been in existence in the universe longer than his . . .
But as
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

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The Kitty Norville series got old, fast, but I still think Carrie Vaughn is a great writer. She's written some fantastic shorts that you can read for free on and her non-Kitty Norville books, which are mostly standalones, are unique and daring and mostly enjoyable. You can imagine my excitement then when I found out that Vaughn had decided to break the mold yet again and publish what looked like young adult space opera.

Space. Ope
Jan 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received an eARC of this novel from the publisher though NetGalley.

I love Carrie Vaughn’s books, and I jumped at the opportunity to read this book early. As with her Kitty Norville stories, Vaughn gives us a first-person narrative with a very comfortable and conversational tone. You can’t help but love her protagonists, in this case a teenage Martian girl named Polly Newton.

Polly learns that she’s been chosen to attend the Galileo Academy on Earth, and she’s not too happy about it. She’s perfe
Originally reviewed at Bookwraiths.

The latest novel from best-selling author Carrie Vaughn, writer of the Kitty Norville urban fantasy series, Martians Abroad is a space opera for the Young Adult genre. Told in first person, this tale of Polly Newton, our narrator, and her twin brother Charles is filled with optimistic hope, adolescent travails, and scientific fun.

Set in a future where humanity has colonized the solar system, Polly and Charles are Martians, having happily lived out their short l
Feb 03, 2017 rated it it was ok
This book had me torn. Outsiders in a school for elites, experiencing the familiar with new eyes, and great relationships between friends and siblings make for a fun book, but a lot of the plot makes no sense at all and if taken at face value, is deeply stupid.

Polly and Charles are twins, second generation Martians, who are the children of their colony's administrator. She's controlling and authoritarian and sends her children to the prestigious Galileo Academy on Earth with very little notice a
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very similar to Podkayne of Mars & I consider it a homage to Podkayne since it was so transparent. Polly & Charles instead of Podkayne & Clarke with very similar personalities. Even the ending was very similar. I was wondering if she'd do Heinlein's original ending or the published one. I won't spoil it for you by saying which she did, though.

There was a large splash of There Is No Darkness, the off world kid trying so hard to fit in & not even realizing when she did. I liked it. It was a nice,
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
3.5 Stars

I'm not a huge sci-fi fan so I went into this somewhat leery for what I was in for and with very little expectations one way or the other, which was probably a good thing honestly. Sometimes going into the unknown isn't a bad thing and with a genre that isn't a favorite, it can even be a good thing.

While I did enjoy the otherworld aspect and details of what life on Mars and on space stations would be like, the plot did tend to be very slow moving for the first half of the book and neve
3.5 stars

Polly and her twin brother Charles were born and raised on Mars, they don't really feel much of a connection to the place their ancestors originated so they're horrified when their mother announces that they're being sent to Earth to finish their education. Earth is a culture shock in so many ways, not only does the different gravity make even walking a much more difficult task than they're used to but they're also thrown in at the deep end thanks to gaps in their education and their to
Jan 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
I had pretty high hopes for this, since I enjoy Carrie Vaughn’s work. And it’s not a bad book; it just never took off for me. The set-up, the conflict, the conclusion — all of it felt a little flat to me. I didn’t quite believe in it, I definitely didn’t believe in the stakes, and I don’t think I really believed in the characters either. On the face of it, I should really enjoy Polly’s character: her presence of mind, her refusal to think inside the box, her quickness to act and her willingness ...more
Marta Cox
Dec 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-reviews, netgalley
I've previously enjoyed this authors work so was quite keen to see what she could bring to something a little more futuristic. Now obviously the main characters are teens so I was prepared for a story that would be suitable for younger readers as well as adults . What I got was a book that had me questioning all sorts of things that I had never expected to.
Yes Polly and her brother Charles have been born on the planet Mars so are technically Martians but please don't expect little green men! Th
Dark Faerie Tales
Feb 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: A fun, yet complicated take on earth when a Martian is put through trials to make it in an earthling school. You gain a whole new appreciation of earth especially when seen through a Martians eyes.

Opening Sentence: There are a thousand shades of brown.

The Review:

Martians Abroad is a standalone tale from Carrie Vaughn that made me really appreciate earth and the beauty that we have here. This novel is set a couple hundred years in the future. The
Jan 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would say a really solid 4 - though the ending felt rather abbreviated.

Charles is my co-hero. Polly was, I don't really know how to explain it, but, while interesting, and eminently readable, somehow smartly clueless and a borderline Mary-Sue (I liked reading her, I would read her more, but without Charles it would've been pointless). Of course, this was a YA, and as such inherently requires a certain element along this line and definitely should not be discounted on any such grounds. The desc
Benjamin Thomas
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Polly Newton has a straightforward personal career goal: become a starship pilot, preferably as an intergalactic pilot and take advantage of the new M Class drives being developed. However, her immediate plans are interrupted when her mother, the Mars Colony One director, announces that Polly and her twin brother Charles have been enrolled at the prestigious Earth-based Galileo Academy. Polly, having been born and raised on Mars as the third generation, post-colonization, has never stepped foot ...more
Mar 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, sci-fi
Polly and her twin brother Charles are 17 year old third generation Martians. They've lived in Mars Colony 1 all their lives and have already found internships and future careers for themselves there. So Polly is heartbroken when their mother sends them to the prestigious boarding school Galileo Academy...on Earth. And when she gets there, she realizes just how much more she has to worry about than she ever expected. Getting accustomed to open spaces, bugs, and gravity is difficult enough, but t ...more
Jan 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017-reads
★ ★ ★ ★ 1/2 (rounded up)
This originally appeared at The Irresponsible Reader.
I remember while growing up back in the 20th century that SF was fun. Maybe fun isn't the right word, but stick with me -- sure, the stories were serious, there were real stakes (usually), not every ending was happy, and so on -- but there was an overall sense that the future would be okay, that space travel and aliens (at least the ones not trying to kill us/take over the world) were positives, and that there as som
Jan 29, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If I wrote the review I would like to write I think it would be so negative as to seem biased but i deeply regret the 8 hours of my life that I spent listening to the audio (which I bought myself). The audio narration is very good actually and probably what stopped me simply giving up on it.

This is is not a young adult book - it's a kids book and not a good one. There is no depth, no 3D characters, it's not sci-fi its just set vaguely in the future and I really wouldn't have cared if they had al
Peter Tillman
Jul 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Not just YA readers
Shelves: science-fiction
This starts out as a tribute to the Heinlein juvenile “Podkayne of Mars,” brought up-to-date, and is a fast-paced comfort read that turns darker, and ends with a cliff-hanger.

This is marketed as a YA coming-of-age story for an aspiring space pilot, and is written by a still-pretty-young woman, so likely draws on her own youth. I liked her writing style, and I liked Polly, who’s 17. Her “twin” brother Charles is pretty creepy. So is their Mom. The teen-angst stuff is well done, as are the clique
Apr 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Flatterers and the young at heart
Recommended to Alan by: Previous work; a venerable template
Robert A. Heinlein gets mentioned twice in the back-cover blurbs for Carrie Vaughn's Martians Abroad. This is no coincidence. For anyone with fond memories of "Heinlein juveniles"—the series of novels he wrote in the late 1940s and 1950s specifically for younger readers, before "YA" was even named, much less abbreviated, much less the marketing-category behemoth it has become—Martians Abroad will be very familiar. Too familiar, perhaps... especially in its early chapters, this book seems more li ...more
Jan 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Downright enjoyable. The writing and pace were such that I was always happy to pick this book up to see what was going to happen to Polly next. I would have liked more time devoted to her relationship to her brother and exploring the school, especially given how short this book was!
Nov 17, 2016 rated it liked it
I really love Carrie Vaughn, and sci-fi, so when I heard her first big project post-Kitty was a classic sci-fi I was beyond excited! And there's lots to like about this book. Vaughn's geeky roots are showing, and it is a delight for someone like me who is also a huge space nerd. She clearly devoted a lot of thought and research to the science and details in this book. What it would be like to live on Mars. What interplanetary travel might be like. What Earth would be like for someone who grew up ...more
Jo  (Mixed Book Bag)
Nov 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
The setting a background of Martians Abroad is one that has been used often. The two main characters are sent back to Earth to go to school over their objections. One is very vocal and one trying to go with the flow. While they adjust they are placed in several dangerous situation. They big question is why target them and who is doing the targeting. A nice story that could be the start of a series or could be stand-alone. A nicely written story but nothing exciting or different from others with ...more
A Reader's Heaven
(I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.)

Polly Newton has one single-minded dream, to be a starship pilot and travel the galaxy. Her mother, the Director of the Mars Colony, derails Polly's plans when she sends Polly and her genius twin brother, Charles, to Galileo Academy on Earth--the one planet Polly has no desire to visit. Ever.
Homesick and cut off from her own plans for her future, Polly cannot seem to fit into the constraints of life on Earth,
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Martians Abroad is an outstanding YA science fiction novel. We start out with our characters, Polly and Charles, two Martians getting ready to leave the only home they've ever know to attend boarding school on earth. A prestigious school, Galileo, will help Polly to achieve her goal of becoming a space pilot, but she remains angry with her mother for sending her away without even conferring with her first. She's even more annoyed with Charles, because he doesn't seem to mind at all. He just keep ...more
Good read. I wasn't sure I would like it-- it sounded a lot like all the many other stories about teens going away to boarding school. But this is well-done, with interesting characters. The heroine, who tells her story herself in first person, is a twin without a particularly good relationship with her twin brother. She wants to be a space pilot, and has her plans for how she's going to accomplish it. But Mom has signed them up for this elite boarding school on Earth. Earth is very different fr ...more
D.L. Morrese
Apr 22, 2018 rated it liked it
A brother and sister from Mars attend an exclusive school on Earth, where things are much different from home. That's pretty much the story. There's no quest, no malevolent bad guy, no clear mystery... not much of a plot at all, really, until one begins to gel well past the middle of the book. The main characters, however, are fairly charming. I have vague recollections of one of the first series of YA science fiction stories I read as a child: Tom Corbett: Space Cadet. (Yes, I'm that old.) I do ...more
Apr 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Is this a YA sci-fi novel? Because it reads like YA. But my bookseller who usually doesn't put me wrong on sci-fi recommendations didn't mention that fact. This book was okay. The characters are all teens, the plot is kind of silly and melodramatic. It's a quick read. Someone else compared this to The Expanse series but I don't see it. The Expanse actually has relatively complex characters and plots. ...more
Bree Pye
As always, Vaughn delivers a solidly entertaining story with her trademark humor and wit. I enjoyed this one from cover to cover and hope we are gifted with another snapshot into the lives of Polly and Charles at some future point!
Kristine Mann
Jun 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Interesting read. I liked the characters, it would have been nice to get more background on more of the characters. I did like the way the author described things on earth from a visitors point of view. It was a strange ending.
I didn't realize this was YA. Not for me. ...more
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Carrie Vaughn is the author more than twenty novels and over a hundred short stories. She's best known for her New York Times bestselling series of novels about a werewolf named Kitty who hosts a talk radio advice show for the supernaturally disadvantaged. In 2018, she won the Philip K. Dick Award for Bannerless, a post-apocalyptic murder mystery. Next up for her: two collections connected to the ...more

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