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Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void

Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void is Mary Roach’s bestselling non-fiction book about the human experience in outer space.

In this book, Roach discovers the real-life unexpected scientific and emotional challenges of being in the ultimate hostile environment – outer space.

With her signature wit and innovative approach, she explores the human side of space exploration, from human waste disposal in space shuttles to post-mortem preparations before an astronaut’s journey to the stars.

Roach’s Writing Style

Mary Roach’s writing style is amusing, informative and engaging. Her unique take on science and her sharp wit are evident throughout the book.

She never shies away from tackling difficult topics, such as the psychological impact of space travel, and she tackles each topic with insight, humor, and plenty of facts.

Roach’s humorous writing style makes even the most complex topics easily digestible to the average reader.


The book is split into four sections: ‘The Final Frontier’, ‘In the Trenches’, ‘Life in the Void’ and ‘Hopping to Mars’.

Each section explores a different aspect of space travel, from the early days of astronauts in training to the latest developments in space travel and what it’s like to live and work in space.

Roach dives deep into the topics of space debris, the impact of zero gravity on the human body, what astronauts eat, and how they deal with the psychological effects of being isolated in space.

She interviews astronauts and scientists and explains the principles of space in an accessible and entertaining way.


Overall, Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void offers an informative, funny and detailed look at the human experience in outer space.

It’s an enjoyable read for anyone interested in space exploration, scientific breakthroughs and an exploration of the human mind. Mary Roach’s delightful writing style makes this book a delight for space and science fans alike.

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