Think of some synonyms for "intense" and any one of them will perfectly describe The Martian by Andy Weir. Agonizing. Fierce. Excruciating. Harrowing. (I could go on, but I won't.)
Astronaut Mark Watney is stuck on Mars. (What?) He was with his crew when a dust storm hit, separating them, and the rest of the crew evacuated and headed back to Earth, believing he's dead. (No!) But he's not. He's alive. On Mars. By himself. Watney wakes up, realizes he's all alone, and instead of bursting into tears like I would, he gets to work, attempting to contact NASA and grow food (on Mars!), all while keeping a video log. His crew finds out that he's alive and are torn as to whether or not to go back for him because while they feel guilty about leaving him, going back for him could mean their deaths if they run out of supplies. (Because there are no grocery stores on Mars.)
The Martian has been made into a movie starring Matt Damon as Watney. It also stars Jessica Chastain, Jeff Daniels, Chiwetel Ejiofor (starring in his second book-to-film of the year, the first being Z is for Zachariah) and Kristen Wiig. Check out the trailer and read the book if you haven't already. The movie comes out on October 2.