Published by Tom Doherty Associates on May 2, 2017
Genres: Action & Adventure, Fiction, Science Fiction, Biopunk
Sometimes high expectations can ruin your experience with a book. I’ve been meaning to try the Murderbot Diaries for a while after hearing so much praise. Unfortunately, All Systems Red (the first book in the series) was not for me.
The story’s protagonist is a SecUnit (Security Unit) that has named itself Murderbot. Murderbot is a cyborg whose function is to protect its team of humans on space expeditions. Unaware to anyone Murderbot has hacked its government module giving it full autonomy. During their current expedition the team notices missing areas on their government supplied maps. They investigate the missing areas and uncover a conspiracy.
The biggest appeal for all systems red is Murderbot they have a great sense of humor. Their wry observations on the human crewmates are entertaining. Murderbot is arguably just as human as any other crewmate. I especially related to Murderbot’s passion for soap operas and other trashy media.
I thought the plot of All Systems Red was very simplistic and generic. The answer to the main mystery was not exciting. I believe that authors shouldn’t include mysteries in their books unless the answer is clever or surprising. When I read science fiction I want an immersive and complex story. For me Martha Well’s novella lacked world building and character development outside of Murderbot. It’s been a few weeks after finishing the book and I can’t remember anything significant about the human crewmembers. While I enjoyed the character of Murderbot it’s not enough to make me want to continue with the series. This provides me with a great opportunity to work on one of my 2022 reading goals!
The completionist in me wants to finish every book series I start. I have suffered through many mediocre books because of this bad habit. However, it is time for me to embrace one of my 2022 reading goals. I will DNF the Murderbot Diaries. Well, technically I didn’t DNF the book (it was only 150 pages can you blame me?) But I will not read the next book and will spend time with other stories I’ll hopefully enjoy more instead.