All Systems Red — Martha Wells

All Systems Red is the first book in the Murderbot Diaries series, and it absolutely SLAYED me. It’s about a security robot—whose specialty is understandably murder—that hacks its own module and spends its mission trying to figure out what it is. In the meantime, it is awkward and baffled by its human companions and just wants to be left alone.

Never could I relate to a character so much. This kind of story could have easily gotten overly sentimental, or worse, overly preachy (humans bad, robots good), but stays humorous, skeptical, and true to its tone.

What results is a profound look at human behavior that—and this is the best part—is 100% optional. It does not hit you over the head with it, so if that’s not your thing, you can easily stay focused on the light-hearted, satirical writing of an awkward, unapologetic, and anti-social robot.

Would definitely recommend! The length worked well for me. I usually read beasts of at least 400 pages, and while I love them, it was nice to have a contained, multi-layered story within 150 pages. I connected to the MC, the story was fun, and the humor landed.

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