All Systems Red – Martha Wells


“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.“

This was a whistlestop 150 page page-turner which I wanted to last a lot longer, honestly. The whole tale is told from the pov of ‘Murderbot’ which regularly turns to face the wall when it speaks to humans, despises their pity and watches copious amounts of ‘trash’ tv just to get through the day. I definitely related to Murderbot on several levels…

Having once been through an unfortunate incident itself, the Murderbot hacks its own governor module in order to preserve its autonomy, while still following all the usual orders, it’s a little more able to be rude about the Company which hires it out. This proves invaluable as things take a darker turn on the small, unpopulated planet of its current job.

The tension ramps up unbearably over the 150 pages, with twists and turns around every corner. I couldn’t stop reading, and finished it over one bus journey, and immediately lent it to the friend I was meeting.

Read an excerpt here:
Get All Systems Red here.


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