So I should preface this with: despite my review of the Forward collection a couple of weeks ago, I am NOT a sci-fi fan. Some of the worst books I ever remember reading are different types of sci-fi. I am looking at you: Annihilation trilogy, Red Rising, This is how you lose the time war. Sidenote: I just went back on my Goodreads and these are all the sci-fi books I read over the last 4 years and I hated them all. 🙁
What a delight.
All Systems Red is a novella that follows Muderbot, a Security Unit who has hacked its own governor module so that it can use its time to watch TV while it accompanies a group of people who are surveying an unexplored planet. It just wants to do a half-arsed job, be left alone and interact with humans as little as possible while it spends its time watching the entertainment feed and making sure the company does not realise it has free will.
But all is not what it seems, and the planet just got a lot more dangerous, and it’s so fun to be inside Murderbot’s head while it goes from “I don’t care” to “Nobody was touching my humans.”
I know this is the starting point to an entire series, but it’s a surprisingly satisfying novella even as a standalone. Though I enjoyed spending my time with it so much, I will definitely try the sequels.