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All Systems Red: The Murderbot Diaries Paperback – May 2, 2017
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“I love Murderbot!” ―Ann Leckie, author of Ancillary Justice
“Clever, inventive, brutal when it needs to be, and compassionate without ever being sentimental.” ―Kate Elliott, author of the Spirit Walker trilogy
“Endearing, funny, action-packed, and murderous.” ―Kameron Hurley, author of The Stars are Legion
“Not only a fun, fast-paced space-thriller, but also a sharp, sometimes moving character study that will resonate with introverts even if they're not lethal AI machines.” ―Malka Older, author of Infomocracy
“Wells gives depth to a rousing but basically familiar action plot by turning it into the vehicle by which SecUnit engages with its own rigorously denied humanity.” ―Publishers Weekly starred review
“I already can’t wait for the next one.” ―The Verge
“Meet your favorite depressed A.I. since Marvin.” ―B&N Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blog
“A great kick-off for a continuing series.” ―Locus
PRAISE FOR MARTHA WELLS
“Martha Wells writes fantasy the way it was meant to be―poignant, evocative, and astonishing. Prepare to be captivated 'til the sun comes up.” ―Kameron Hurley, author of The Mirror Empire and God's War
“The Cloud Roads has wildly original world-building, diverse and engaging characters, and a thrilling adventure plot. It’s that rarest of fantasies: fresh and surprising, with a story that doesn’t go where ten thousand others have gone before. I can’t wait for my next chance to visit the Three Worlds!” ―N. K. Jemisin, author of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms
"Breathtakingly surprising and fun. For readers who missed earlier entry points to this delightful series, now is the time to get on board." ―The New York Times on The Edge of Worlds
"That rarity―a completely unique and stunning fantasy world." ―Hugo Award-winning author Elizabeth Bear on The Edge of Worlds
About the Author
MARTHA WELLS has written many fantasy novels, including The Wizard Hunters, Wheel of the Infinite, the Books of the Raksura series (beginning with The Cloud Roads and ending with The Harbors of the Sun), and the Nebula-nominated The Death of the Necromancer, as well as YA fantasy novels, short stories, and non-fiction.
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Our hero is SecUnit, an AI robot that has hacked its own governor module and found this universe's answer to Netflix. Bored with the mind-numbing security detail for a routine geological survey, it just wants to get back to base so it can watch the latest episode of its favorite serial show. And, as Wells would say, that's when everything went to ****.
SecUnit/Murderbot is an intelligent and compassionate being, with a healthy dose of social anxiety. It has reservations about its human companions, but still works tirelessly to ensure their survival. Woven throughout the plotline, though, is the not-so-subtle discussion about whether S.U. is merely a tool, to be utilized and then cast aside, or a being worthy of the same dignity and respect as any other human.
I can't wait to see what the future holds for S.U.! An excellent start to this new series!!
The ending for this segment was a very good setup for more stories to come. I was a little apprehensive about the length of the story because I have been disappointed by short stories and novellas in the past because they never fully engaged my emotions. I didn't need to worry about that with this story by Martha Wells and I am definitely looking forward to reading the continuing adventures of this Imitative Human Bot Unit.
I'm in the middle of some other books, so I wasnt' ready to start this in earnest.
Thinking I would just read a few pages to get a feel for this new book, I couldn't put it down. I was riveted until I finished it (midnight.)
The main character breaks the stereotype of cyborgs, and the profit-oriented culture created in this book has lots of touchstones with modern life. Enough touchstones to make the story seem to be a commentary on some corporate value systems, but still deftly avoids getting bogged down in the usual dystopian motifs that we have seen so many times before.
It's a good read, I cannot recommend it highly enough.
The protagonist is a cyborg "Security Bot" rented out by an insurance company as a condition for getting interplanetary expeditions insured. He's hacked the governor module that keeps him following orders, and uses his freedom to download serialized dramas. He is snarky and cynical and apathetic. It has an interesting unreliable narrator...the narrator is actively trying to deny certain things about himself, sees himself as more robot then he probably really is. There are hints he probably looks very different to others then the image we get from his internal monologue. On the surface this is a fun goofy book with a funny narrator. If you stop and think about it there is a certain amount of fridge horror and poignancy. The main character is actually one of the more alien minds in sci fi, but doesn't seem that way because we see through his eyes.
It's novella length, so in that sense it's a short read- but it is so dense with details that it makes most full-length novels feel trifling.
The protagonist is a security 'bot- a mix of human organic material and mechanical systems. It is aware, though, and able to tweak its own and other systems to its benefit, and to help others... when it wants to.
I thought its thought processes and decision-making felt very authentic. Some reviewers have said it felt mle to them; to me it felt female, so that's an interesting thought experiment in itself!
While it cares about doing a good job, it is not exactly dedicated to this; it has a solid grasp of its own self-interest (including having off-time in which to watch galactic soap operas), and keeps that in mind even when being mostly altruistic. This may be the most INTJ protagonist ever!
I loved the book, and hope Wells writes more in this world!