The day I finished this I also finished two other books, which is pretty much unheard of for me. I’m so glad that I finally got around to reading this book because I’ve seen so many people who love this series and I was a little nervous because its a series of novellas, but I gave it a shot!
All Systems Red
by Martha Wells
Series: The Murderbot Diaries #1
Release date: May 2nd 2017
Genre: Science Fiction, Adult, Novella
In a corporate-dominated spacefaring future, planetary missions must be approved and supplied by the Company. Exploratory teams are accompanied by Company-supplied security androids, for their own safety.
But in a society where contracts are awarded to the lowest bidder, safety isn’t a primary concern.
On a distant planet, a team of scientists are conducting surface tests, shadowed by their Company-supplied ‘droid — a self-aware SecUnit that has hacked its own governor module, and refers to itself (though never out loud) as “Murderbot.” Scornful of humans, all it really wants is to be left alone long enough to figure out who it is.
But when a neighboring mission goes dark, it‘s up to the scientists and their Murderbot to get to the truth.
I’m still trying to pin down what kind of science fiction that I enjoy reading, but I have to say that this definitely fits my science fiction niche (along with Illuminae, Aurora Rising, and Leviathan Wakes – does that mean I like evil corporations/groups of people going missing in space?) I don’t know why it always surprises me how well developed novellas can be, because I had this same reaction when I read Come Tumbling Down which is the newest novella in the Wayward Children series.
I listened to this on audiobook and I think for this series that’s going to be my preferred method of reading because it was so well done! Murderbot was definitely the highlight of the book for me, which 100% makes sense since he’s the main character. He’s so awkward around humans, and the way that he acts uncaring but secretly cares about “his” humans was so relatable! I’m a sucker for any type of A.I. or robots with a real personality, and Murderbot definitely fits that bill.
As far as the plot goes, it was very straightforward which I appreciated for such a short novella. It was really fascinating though because there are so many questions that I hope will be answered in future novellas. I don’t want to give too much away since saying anything specific will give away spoilers, but I love how we focused on Murderbot who just gets pulled into this larger problem with the team that he is protecting, and it just goes from there!
There’s a lot packed into this 144 page novella, and I guarantee if you give it a shot you will also fall in love with Murderbot!