The Murderbot Diaries #2: Artificial Condition by Martha Wells

Read: 9 February, 2019

All Systems Red definitely wasn’t a fluke, and I’m loving Murderbot more and more the more time I spend with it.

I really enjoyed seeing how it interacts with different types of sentients (in this book, we have a research ship, humans, and a sexbot) as it starts to develop more of its own unique personality.

More books in the Murderbot Diaries series:

  • All Systems Red
  • Artificial Condition
  • Rogue Protocol
  • Exit Strategy

The Murderbot Diaries #1: All Systems Red by Martha Wells

Read: 6 February, 2019

I absolutely love Murderbot!

This is a short little novella about a SecUnit (think security android), from its own perspective, as it tries to protect its crew when absolutely everything is going wrong. I feel Murderbot’s anxiety and snark.

The mystery itself started out really well, with a good creeping “something isn’t right” feeling, but I did feel that the resolution was a little rushed. When we find out who is behind the mystery, and why, it comes somewhat out of left field, and is resolved almost as an afterthought. I do appreciate that this is more of a character study than a mystery, but I still would have preferred a bit more time with the mystery as well.

This is a very small complaint, though, and I had a lot of fun with this story.

More books in the Murderbot Diaries series:

  • All Systems Red
  • Artificial Condition
  • Rogue Protocol
  • Exit Strategy

Space Opera by Catherynne M. Valente

Read: 18 January, 2019

I was really surprised to find out that the author is USian – Space Opera reads just like Douglas Adams or Terry Pratchett, with their particular brand of dry, critical (yet optimistic) humour. It really was such a pleasure to get to enjoy that style of writing again, but updated for modern sensibilities and with modern pop culture references.

And while this may out me as some kind of SJW, I loved the genderfluid and pansexual representation. In particular, I liked the way that aliens got to figure out how to have sex with each other – it was a great analogue for “what do you like?” conversations that we don’t model enough in our representations of sex.