Redshirts

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Redshirts [Reading] ➾ Redshirts Author John Scalzi – Polishdarling.co.uk Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year It s a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the to be as Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the yearIt s a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the to be assigned to the ship s Xenobiology laboratoryLife couldn t be better until Andrew begins to pick up on the fact thatevery Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forcesthe ship s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontationsat least one low ranked crew member is, sadly, always killedNot surprisingly, a great deal of energy below decks is expended on avoiding, at all costs, being assigned to an Away Mission Then Andrew stumbles on information that completely transforms his and his colleagues understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is and offers them a crazy, high risk chance to save their own lives.


10 thoughts on “Redshirts

  1. Patrick Patrick says:

    Simply said, I loved this book If you want me to go intodetail, I can But that s the heart of the matter.I don t do spoilers So instead, let me say this This book was fun It was clever It was geeky But most of all, it made me laugh I m not just saying it was funny I m saying I actually laughed out loud in the restaurant where I was reading it Then later at the coffee shop Then later still when I was reading it at home, even though I was alone in the house Even though that s wha Simply said, I loved this book If you want me to go intodetail, I can But that s the heart of the matter.I don t do spoilers So instead, let me say this This book was fun It was clever It was geeky But most of all, it made me laugh I m not just saying it was funny I m saying I actually laughed out loud in the restaurant where I was reading it Then later at the coffee shop Then later still when I was reading it at home, even though I was alone in the house Even though that s what crazy people do I can honestly say I can t think of another book that ever made me laugh this much Ever So yeah It s good stuff A My one problem with this book is that it makes me feel a little threatened I know John Scalzi I like him We re both successful authors, and we both live very happily in our respective corners of the sky He writes snappy, clever sci fi with good plot and action I write huge tangled metafictional fantasy thingers This is a good thing It means that while we re neighbors, we re somewhat distant neighbors This makes it easier for us to be friends, because we re both doing our own thing on our own ends of the street, metaphorically speaking.But now Scalzi has gone all meta That s my turf If this book wasn t so entertaining, I d want to send some big, broad shouldered men around to his house to look menacing and say things like, Mr Rothfuss is worried about some of the writing you have been doing in his neighborhood When Mr Rothfuss gets worried about things, sometimes people get mysteriously hurt With an axe handle So yeah Thanks for the early look at the book, Scalzi Thanks for the vastly entertaining read Just remember Axe handle


  2. unknown unknown says:

    I was going to write a review for this one, but then I realized I could basically just cut and paste my review of Agent to the Stars, changing relevant details like plot and character names and just keeping everything else exactly the same Because this book, like all of Scalzi s books except maybe Old Man s War and the two Old Man s War books I didn t read because I didn t really like the second book, suffers or maybe benefits, I don t know, apparently people love this dude from being wri I was going to write a review for this one, but then I realized I could basically just cut and paste my review of Agent to the Stars, changing relevant details like plot and character names and just keeping everything else exactly the same Because this book, like all of Scalzi s books except maybe Old Man s War and the two Old Man s War books I didn t read because I didn t really like the second book, suffers or maybe benefits, I don t know, apparently people love this dude from being written by John Scalzi More specifically, John Scalzi, Popular Blogger and Honorary President of Internet Nerds The plusses of being a book written by John Scalzi you probably have a good premise, you can be read in about three hours, and you are probably going to sell pretty well The negatives you won t be as funny as you think you are, the cleverness of your premise will be worn thin even at a three hour reading length, and all of your characters will sound exactly the same as not only each other, but all of the characters in all of John Scalzi s novelsspecifically, they will sound like a blog post by John Scalzi Oh, also on the downside, Wil Wheaton will narrate you as an audiobook, which is bad news not only because you don t work very well as an audiobook unless your listeners like it when every single line of dialogue is attributed, even during long, quippy back and forths, though I guess you could argue it is necessary since everyone sounds the same , but because Wil Wheaton is kind of shockingly terrible as a reader of audiobooks though he does make all the characters sound the same, so maybe that s intentionally meta.Speaking of meta this book is very in love with itself, especially the second half, and especially especially the three codas, which are kind of infuriating, if only because they reveal how lazy of a writer Scalzi is he hints that there is this deeper level beyond his story, one worth exploring, even though he didn t bother writing a story interesting enough to make me care to do it.Because Scalzi is kind of lazy I mean, the incredibly hard working kind of lazy, where you get everything done, but you get it done just enough, and you think it doesn t matter because your boss didn t notice, or your teacher doesn t grade very hard and you got an A anyway, or you are a really nice guy and your fans are going to praise everything you do regardless of quality hi, Joss Whedon.I mean, consider all the problems in this book, from the samey characters to the limp plot to the unearned sentimentality to the not very funny funny dialogue, could probably have been cleared up with, I don t know, another draft or two But Scalzi is very busy being Scalzi, so he wrote this one in five weeks because NaNoWriMo just isn t enough time to do a thorough job , sent it off to his editor, and proceded to write 11 blogs posts and attend five comic book conventions before finally dropping into bed, exhausted, but confident that his teacher was probably still going to give him that A, because he s a really nice guy and always makes funny comments in class.And, judging by his NYT best seller status, he got that A But not from me


  3. Anne Anne says:

    4.5 starsRe read 2017My original feeling for the book stand, but I did find the 3 Codas at the end seemed a tadtedious and unneeded this time around Orignal review 2015FanfuckingtasticI could totally slap myself for not reading this sooner The premise of this story is that Andy Dahl and a group of his friends, who all work aboard the starship Intrepid, start to notice a troubling pattern happening on the Away Missions.And they aren t the only ones who ve noticedDoes everyone kn 4.5 starsRe read 2017My original feeling for the book stand, but I did find the 3 Codas at the end seemed a tadtedious and unneeded this time around Orignal review 2015FanfuckingtasticI could totally slap myself for not reading this sooner The premise of this story is that Andy Dahl and a group of his friends, who all work aboard the starship Intrepid, start to notice a troubling pattern happening on the Away Missions.And they aren t the only ones who ve noticedDoes everyone know what aRedshirtis On the off chance you aren t a Star Trek fan or maybe haven t been exposed to the term before, let me explain where it came from.On every mission, Captain Kirk, Spock, Bones, etc would get beamed to some uncharted planet to discover something But, of course, our main characters never beamed anywhere by themselves Not really.They always took Ensign So n So wearing his red shirt with them And, inevitably, Ensign Redshirt ended up as cannon fodder.Death by exploding rock So, after watching the show for any length of time, you knew what was going to eventually happen to anyone who happened to be wearing the wrong color in an uncharted area of space.Death by zappy beam Which is hilarious when you re watching re runs and playing a drinking game But maybe it wouldn t quite so funny if the Redshirts were real characters Although, I laughed my ass off at Andy and his friends the entire time I was reading this, so that blows that theory right out of the water.I wasn t all that surprised that I thought this was funny, but I was really surprised that I was totally invested in the plot And there is a plot A really good one And the ENDING I did not see that twist coming, Mr Scalzi Well done, sir Alright, so what happens is view spoiler hahahahahahahaha No I m not telling you anything.Go get this book if you wanna find out what makes this story so special hide spoiler


  4. Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin says:

    There s something seriously wrong with this ship, Dahl repeated Yeah, Finn said I think you might be right My face when I figured out what was going on I loved the original Star Trek so much and I still watch it to this day So the idea of this book having references to the show was cool There are a group of people that are tired of being killed on the show They don t understand what is going on and are out to find out what it is The red shirt, Abnett said You know, in the There s something seriously wrong with this ship, Dahl repeated Yeah, Finn said I think you might be right My face when I figured out what was going on I loved the original Star Trek so much and I still watch it to this day So the idea of this book having references to the show was cool There are a group of people that are tired of being killed on the show They don t understand what is going on and are out to find out what it is The red shirt, Abnett said You know, in the original Star Trek, they always had Kirk and Bones and Spock and then some poor dude in a red shirt who got vaporized before the commercial The moral of the story was not to wear a red shirt Or go on away missions when you re the only one whose name isn t on the opening credits Overall I thought the story was great and I loved the characters Mel


  5. Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ says:

    March 2020 reread, just because It s surprising how much of this I forgot since I first read it 5 years ago and how muchI liked it this second time around I loved all the meta stuff it s pretty mindblowing And I m actually very fond of the three codas that make up the last quarter of the book I got a good chuckle when I realized that the three codas First Person, Second Person and Third Person are about three different minor characters from the main storyline, and the codas a March 2020 reread, just because It s surprising how much of this I forgot since I first read it 5 years ago and how muchI liked it this second time around I loved all the meta stuff it s pretty mindblowing And I m actually very fond of the three codas that make up the last quarter of the book I got a good chuckle when I realized that the three codas First Person, Second Person and Third Person are about three different minor characters from the main storyline, and the codas are written in wait for it first person, second person and third person How did I miss that the first time through D4.5 stars What if the redshirt extras low ranking crew members on Star Trek The Chronicles of the Intrepid realized that whenever one of them accompanies the starship s officers on an away mission to a planet or somewhere, that crew member was extremely likely to be killed Naturally, this creates a dog eat dog situation where the long term members of the crew learn to disappear quickly whenever an officer comes around, and the newer members have a very high mortality rate Finally, a few of the junior crew members decide to try to get to the bottom of this mysterious phenomenon and, if possible, try to find a way to end it.This book is extremely funny in parts, especially if you re familiar with the original Star Trek and some of its characters and quirks, but it s really kind of an odd book at the same time Most of the book is a satire, a little on the superficial side and very snappy dialogue driven There s a lot to make fun of with Trek, as fond as I am of it, and it s not all about the callous and weird ways in which random crew members die I did think the captain here needed a few sexy alien ladies slinking up to him The answer to the mystery of why so many crew members are dying on this particular starship doesn t really hold water logically AT ALL, but I ve suspended disbelief on a lot shakier plot lines in my Trek watching over the years, and I was willing to roll with it.Then the story gets a little bitscrewy and a lotmeta, and at about the 70% mark the main story ends The rest of the book is three codas written from the points of view of three very minor characters from the first part of the story, telling a littleabout what happened in their lives after the main story ended They re interesting, but so very different in tone from the rest of the book that the contrast is a little jarring They re kind of sobering, in fact And no, that wasn t me you saw surreptitiously wiping away a tear as I turned the last page.3 1 2 stars I may decide to round up when I see how I feel about this in another day or two ETA I have in fact decided to round up, after chatting with Anne in the thread to her very funny review It made me realize that I recall this book with a lot of affection, despite its flaws.Content advisory fairly frequent F bombs, and some innuendos and crude talk in a few places


  6. Nataliya Nataliya says:

    2020 reread still so much funSooner or later the Narrative will come for each of usThanks to cultural osmosis even I, the person who according to a colleague of mine lost quite a few nerd points for having never seen a single Star Trek episode, am somehow familiar with the concept of redshirts the unfortunate extras whose lot is to die dramatically on screen just to pad the plot and remind the viewer that the near invincible main characters are indeed, so to say, in a real pickle 2020 reread still so much funSooner or later the Narrative will come for each of usThanks to cultural osmosis even I, the person who according to a colleague of mine lost quite a few nerd points for having never seen a single Star Trek episode, am somehow familiar with the concept of redshirts the unfortunate extras whose lot is to die dramatically on screen just to pad the plot and remind the viewer that the near invincible main characters are indeed, so to say, in a real pickleIn other words, crew deaths are a feature, not a bugAnd so the story goes a bunch of new crew members on a starship Intrepid discover that despite being to themselves very much real, they are little but the doomed Redshirts on the not so good Star Trek rip off third rate TV showIt s messed up that the most rational explanation for what does go on in this ship is that a television show intrudes on our reality and warps it But that s not the worst thing about it Jesus Christ, Finn said If that s not the worst thing, what is That as far as I can tell, Jenkins said, it s not actually a very good showWhen the bizarre and incomprehensible to any real reason logic of TV Narrative seizes control of their lives, the events and actions quickly turn rather cinematically idiotic, and a few crew members are invariably destined to die gruesome and pointless deaths while a few officers clearly the show s protagonists survive despite all odds Over the years, certain crew members have even learned to semi successfully game the system in order to survive Because what else can you do but succumb to the Narrative, no matter how poorly written and unfair it isWe ve already established whoever is writing us is an assholeThis was my first time reading anything by John Scalzi, and it kept me quite entertained, assuring that it will not be the last There was something about its constantly shifting style and message that suits my easily distractible nature I guess it was the constant oscillation between smart satire, slapstick comedy, eye rolling meta , sappy sentimentality and unexpected infusion of searching for the meaning of life and self discovery All together it creates an interesting combination that at times flows smoothly and at times teeters on the verge of losing its footing just a bit But overall it worked It worked even despite the honestly, quite unnecessary three codas stuck onto the ending if the book as though their only function was to pad the word count just a little bit I wish they were left out, and the ending just the way it was, abrupt and unexpected and yet completely necessary given the internal logic of the narrative was left to stand on its own 2020 edit I did not mind the codas this time go figure But even with the extra padding, the story workedWhether you re an extra or the hero, this story is about to end When it s done, whatever you want to be will be up to you and only you It will happen away from the eyes of any audience and from the hand of any writer You will be your own manI liked it, I really did I had fun reading it, and now I m trying to decide which Scalzi book I want to try next Thoughts And no, I ll never ever again will be able to look at any TV show without imagining the implications of the script governing the lives of real peopleOther science fiction shows had science advisers and consultants, Hanson pointed out It s science fiction, Weinstein said The second part of that phrase matters too But you re making it bad science fiction, Hester said And we have to live in it4 stars


  7. Alejandro Alejandro says:

    Death the Final FateThese are the voyages of the Starship Intrepid.Its continuing mission,to kill naive new crewmembers,to seek out cheap thrills and easy lamentations,to boldly go where no redshirt has gone before I knew since some time ago about this novel but until now I had been able to read it, and I am truly glad that I did it One of the best Star Trek novels without really being about Star Trek.It s a common knowledge but again for those neophytes to the topic, let me explain th Death the Final FateThese are the voyages of the Starship Intrepid.Its continuing mission,to kill naive new crewmembers,to seek out cheap thrills and easy lamentations,to boldly go where no redshirt has gone before I knew since some time ago about this novel but until now I had been able to read it, and I am truly glad that I did it One of the best Star Trek novels without really being about Star Trek.It s a common knowledge but again for those neophytes to the topic, let me explain that Red Shirt is a term that people started to use refering for those poor crewmembers, sometimes even without a proper name, accompanying the main officers of the Starship Enterprise, in the Original Series of Star Trek Usually they wear red shirts due that Security Officers wear uniforms with shirts colored in red And to add a feeling of danger and realism to the series, the scriptwriters decided to kill some low level crewmember in each away mission while visiting some dangerous planet or some mysterious space station.This recurring gag became so common in the Original Series that the term of Red Shirt or Redshirt is usually apply to any extra killed in any TV series and or film to obtain thrills from the audience.John Scalzi, the author, came up with this brilliant story merging smart humor, nasty dangers and wonderful science fiction, consolidating a great novel, obviously appealing to any Trekker, but also to any reader interested in science fiction in general or even looking for an amusing book.Without a doubt, one of the most polemic topics in any story is when a character is killed off the narrative People may think that killing a secondary or even tertiary character cannot do a negative effect to the audience, but one has to think about that for some people may be a non important character but it may be relevant even the reason of why the reader is keeping up with the story Also, giving less value to the life of a character just because he she wasn t important on the story, in a way, is like provoking an effect of not value a life if they haven t acomplished something worthy of mention in history.Killing characters always is controversial.If they became extremely popular, it can t alienate audience to keep up reading watching any series Also, it s sad to think about all the lost potential for that character since he she is no longer in the story Even worse if one realizes that he she was killed off just to avoid to became a characterpopular than certain other key character that the writer may appreciateBut definitely, the worst of all is when a character is introduced, giving him her a lot of developing but is killed off before of acomplishing anything of value to the story.And of course, we have the issue of returning back from the dead That happens when the characters are too important to keep them dead and or to make an event about the resurrection of the characters That certainly has its positive and negative repercussions.Getting back to the novel, while it s basic premise is to exploit the recurring gag of killing off characters to get cheap thrills, also this excellent book is a great example of a crafty story with priceless science fiction and fantasy.The only bad thing that I can think of is a section once the story ends, with three codas telling like side stories about some characters whom appeared on the book Honestly, I didn t need that, it was like anti climatic having finished the novel and then finding those codas , that they didn t give me any info of importante to change my impression of the novel I don t know if they were included only to reach a 300 page level, that in previous times I have commented that if a story is good, it s doesn t need lot of pages to be seen as a worthy material But again, if you opted of not reading those additional codas to the book, well, don t do it You won t miss much.However, the novel is indeed a fine masterpiece of crafty reading.Highly recommended


  8. Kemper Kemper says:

    Halfway through this book, I was thinking that I could do something funny in this review with Will Farrell s character from the movie Stranger Than Fiction But then it had to go and actually reference Stranger Than Fiction and ruin my plans.Thanks for nothing, Scalzi Anyhow, in the distant future the starship Intrepid exploresthe galaxy with a crew led by a bold captain and his logical science officer A group of newly assigned crew members quickly notice that odd and bizarre things happen when Halfway through this book, I was thinking that I could do something funny in this review with Will Farrell s character from the movie Stranger Than Fiction But then it had to go and actually reference Stranger Than Fiction and ruin my plans.Thanks for nothing, Scalzi Anyhow, in the distant future the starship Intrepid exploresthe galaxy with a crew led by a bold captain and his logical science officer A group of newly assigned crew members quickly notice that odd and bizarre things happen when they get around the captain and his senior staff Routine missions become dangerous The basic laws of physics seem to break down Common sense is forgotten And god help you if you re one of the unlucky bastards who ends up on an away team with them because you re probably coming back to the ship in a body bag Assuming there s enough left of your corpse to bring back at all.Scalzi took what could be a one joke premise from the old gag about the extras wearing red on Star Trek being disposable and having a very short shelf life, and he turned that concept into a funny and interesting examination on the nature of fiction and free will I don t want to say too much about the plot because the twists and turns are part of the fun, but I liked how the book went off in a couple of surprising directions.While I had fun with it, Scalzi s style is becoming a bit odd to me, and that was enough to take it from four stars to three He skips almost any kind of descriptive writing to focus almost exclusively on dialogue driven plot For example, there isn t a single word about what the ship or the characters look like Skimping on the exposition in the interest of rushing through the main part of the story makes it compulsively readable, but it also makes it feel a bit thin So while I was completely into the story of the crew fighting against their fate, a fewdetails about what that looked like would have been welcome.One other minor nitpick view spoiler If television hasn t existed for centuries, how are all of the crew instantly aware of things like commercial breaks and the tricks routinely used to heighten the drama I guess in light of the conversation near the end before the codas, you could make a case that this is part of the even larger narrative, but it was strange hide spoiler Despite some of my problems with it, Scalzi still writes with heart and humor, and sci fi could use a lotof that


  9. Matthew Matthew says:

    It s never a good thing to wear a red shirt in sci fi .Bad things happen to guys in red shirts .You always have a couple of disposable extras for an away mission .But, what if they figured it out and decided to do something about it This book was excellent I am very impressed with how creative, funny, and moving it is all at the same time It pokes fun at cheesy sci fi television while honoring it at the same time Scalzi has become one of my favorites for his creativity in a genre It s never a good thing to wear a red shirt in sci fi .Bad things happen to guys in red shirts .You always have a couple of disposable extras for an away mission .But, what if they figured it out and decided to do something about it This book was excellent I am very impressed with how creative, funny, and moving it is all at the same time It pokes fun at cheesy sci fi television while honoring it at the same time Scalzi has become one of my favorites for his creativity in a genre that can easily get repetitive If you love sci fi books and television, you owe it to yourself to check this one out


  10. Lyn Lyn says:

    Redshirts A Novel with Three Codas by John I m not Gene Roddenberry but I dressed up like him once for Halloween Scalzi could have also been Redshirts Existential Musings in the Internet Age by a Satire Minded Child of the Eighties Winner of the Hugo and the Locus Award, I can see the spinning wheels in the minds of the award voters selection committee of both trophies A fun, unique twist on an old Star Trek gag but then he goes and ends it with an existential quest for meaning amidst Redshirts A Novel with Three Codas by John I m not Gene Roddenberry but I dressed up like him once for Halloween Scalzi could have also been Redshirts Existential Musings in the Internet Age by a Satire Minded Child of the Eighties Winner of the Hugo and the Locus Award, I can see the spinning wheels in the minds of the award voters selection committee of both trophies A fun, unique twist on an old Star Trek gag but then he goes and ends it with an existential quest for meaning amidst spiritual ennui and isolation with a timely cultural message and pulls a satisfying ending out of the hat No kidding.I think it was the three codas, told from first, second and third person perspectives that put this over the top, the element in this book that lifted it deep over the centerfielder s head and into the bleachers As Jeff Lebowski would say it really tied the room together A fun mix of Galaxy Quest, Weird Science, Stranger than Fiction, and Heinlein s The Number of the Beast, Redshirts is funny, entertaining, quirky, baffling, mind bending and thought provoking and even, yes, touching There are some gaps in the narrative, some stretches in the already strained science, and some oddly thin characterizations, but all the same this is a winner.One recurring theme that I notice in Scalzi s work is a playful satire tribute of sci fi classics Redshirts to Star Trek, Old Man s War to Heinlein, Fuzzy Nation to Little Fuzzy and The Android s Dream to Philip K Dick I like what he s done with the place, Live Long and Prosper


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10 thoughts on “Redshirts

  1. Patrick Patrick says:

    Simply said, I loved this book If you want me to go intodetail, I can But that s the heart of the matter.I don t do spoilers So instead, let me say this This book was fun It was clever It was geeky But most of all, it made me laugh I m not just saying it was funny I m saying I actually laughed out loud in the restaurant where I was reading it Then later at the coffee shop Then later still when I was reading it at home, even though I was alone in the house Even though that s wha Simply said, I loved this book If you want me to go intodetail, I can But that s the heart of the matter.I don t do spoilers So instead, let me say this This book was fun It was clever It was geeky But most of all, it made me laugh I m not just saying it was funny I m saying I actually laughed out loud in the restaurant where I was reading it Then later at the coffee shop Then later still when I was reading it at home, even though I was alone in the house Even though that s what crazy people do I can honestly say I can t think of another book that ever made me laugh this much Ever So yeah It s good stuff A My one problem with this book is that it makes me feel a little threatened I know John Scalzi I like him We re both successful authors, and we both live very happily in our respective corners of the sky He writes snappy, clever sci fi with good plot and action I write huge tangled metafictional fantasy thingers This is a good thing It means that while we re neighbors, we re somewhat distant neighbors This makes it easier for us to be friends, because we re both doing our own thing on our own ends of the street, metaphorically speaking.But now Scalzi has gone all meta That s my turf If this book wasn t so entertaining, I d want to send some big, broad shouldered men around to his house to look menacing and say things like, Mr Rothfuss is worried about some of the writing you have been doing in his neighborhood When Mr Rothfuss gets worried about things, sometimes people get mysteriously hurt With an axe handle So yeah Thanks for the early look at the book, Scalzi Thanks for the vastly entertaining read Just remember Axe handle


  2. unknown unknown says:

    I was going to write a review for this one, but then I realized I could basically just cut and paste my review of Agent to the Stars, changing relevant details like plot and character names and just keeping everything else exactly the same Because this book, like all of Scalzi s books except maybe Old Man s War and the two Old Man s War books I didn t read because I didn t really like the second book, suffers or maybe benefits, I don t know, apparently people love this dude from being wri I was going to write a review for this one, but then I realized I could basically just cut and paste my review of Agent to the Stars, changing relevant details like plot and character names and just keeping everything else exactly the same Because this book, like all of Scalzi s books except maybe Old Man s War and the two Old Man s War books I didn t read because I didn t really like the second book, suffers or maybe benefits, I don t know, apparently people love this dude from being written by John Scalzi More specifically, John Scalzi, Popular Blogger and Honorary President of Internet Nerds The plusses of being a book written by John Scalzi you probably have a good premise, you can be read in about three hours, and you are probably going to sell pretty well The negatives you won t be as funny as you think you are, the cleverness of your premise will be worn thin even at a three hour reading length, and all of your characters will sound exactly the same as not only each other, but all of the characters in all of John Scalzi s novelsspecifically, they will sound like a blog post by John Scalzi Oh, also on the downside, Wil Wheaton will narrate you as an audiobook, which is bad news not only because you don t work very well as an audiobook unless your listeners like it when every single line of dialogue is attributed, even during long, quippy back and forths, though I guess you could argue it is necessary since everyone sounds the same , but because Wil Wheaton is kind of shockingly terrible as a reader of audiobooks though he does make all the characters sound the same, so maybe that s intentionally meta.Speaking of meta this book is very in love with itself, especially the second half, and especially especially the three codas, which are kind of infuriating, if only because they reveal how lazy of a writer Scalzi is he hints that there is this deeper level beyond his story, one worth exploring, even though he didn t bother writing a story interesting enough to make me care to do it.Because Scalzi is kind of lazy I mean, the incredibly hard working kind of lazy, where you get everything done, but you get it done just enough, and you think it doesn t matter because your boss didn t notice, or your teacher doesn t grade very hard and you got an A anyway, or you are a really nice guy and your fans are going to praise everything you do regardless of quality hi, Joss Whedon.I mean, consider all the problems in this book, from the samey characters to the limp plot to the unearned sentimentality to the not very funny funny dialogue, could probably have been cleared up with, I don t know, another draft or two But Scalzi is very busy being Scalzi, so he wrote this one in five weeks because NaNoWriMo just isn t enough time to do a thorough job , sent it off to his editor, and proceded to write 11 blogs posts and attend five comic book conventions before finally dropping into bed, exhausted, but confident that his teacher was probably still going to give him that A, because he s a really nice guy and always makes funny comments in class.And, judging by his NYT best seller status, he got that A But not from me


  3. Anne Anne says:

    4.5 starsRe read 2017My original feeling for the book stand, but I did find the 3 Codas at the end seemed a tadtedious and unneeded this time around Orignal review 2015FanfuckingtasticI could totally slap myself for not reading this sooner The premise of this story is that Andy Dahl and a group of his friends, who all work aboard the starship Intrepid, start to notice a troubling pattern happening on the Away Missions.And they aren t the only ones who ve noticedDoes everyone kn 4.5 starsRe read 2017My original feeling for the book stand, but I did find the 3 Codas at the end seemed a tadtedious and unneeded this time around Orignal review 2015FanfuckingtasticI could totally slap myself for not reading this sooner The premise of this story is that Andy Dahl and a group of his friends, who all work aboard the starship Intrepid, start to notice a troubling pattern happening on the Away Missions.And they aren t the only ones who ve noticedDoes everyone know what aRedshirtis On the off chance you aren t a Star Trek fan or maybe haven t been exposed to the term before, let me explain where it came from.On every mission, Captain Kirk, Spock, Bones, etc would get beamed to some uncharted planet to discover something But, of course, our main characters never beamed anywhere by themselves Not really.They always took Ensign So n So wearing his red shirt with them And, inevitably, Ensign Redshirt ended up as cannon fodder.Death by exploding rock So, after watching the show for any length of time, you knew what was going to eventually happen to anyone who happened to be wearing the wrong color in an uncharted area of space.Death by zappy beam Which is hilarious when you re watching re runs and playing a drinking game But maybe it wouldn t quite so funny if the Redshirts were real characters Although, I laughed my ass off at Andy and his friends the entire time I was reading this, so that blows that theory right out of the water.I wasn t all that surprised that I thought this was funny, but I was really surprised that I was totally invested in the plot And there is a plot A really good one And the ENDING I did not see that twist coming, Mr Scalzi Well done, sir Alright, so what happens is view spoiler hahahahahahahaha No I m not telling you anything.Go get this book if you wanna find out what makes this story so special hide spoiler


  4. Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin says:

    There s something seriously wrong with this ship, Dahl repeated Yeah, Finn said I think you might be right My face when I figured out what was going on I loved the original Star Trek so much and I still watch it to this day So the idea of this book having references to the show was cool There are a group of people that are tired of being killed on the show They don t understand what is going on and are out to find out what it is The red shirt, Abnett said You know, in the There s something seriously wrong with this ship, Dahl repeated Yeah, Finn said I think you might be right My face when I figured out what was going on I loved the original Star Trek so much and I still watch it to this day So the idea of this book having references to the show was cool There are a group of people that are tired of being killed on the show They don t understand what is going on and are out to find out what it is The red shirt, Abnett said You know, in the original Star Trek, they always had Kirk and Bones and Spock and then some poor dude in a red shirt who got vaporized before the commercial The moral of the story was not to wear a red shirt Or go on away missions when you re the only one whose name isn t on the opening credits Overall I thought the story was great and I loved the characters Mel


  5. Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ says:

    March 2020 reread, just because It s surprising how much of this I forgot since I first read it 5 years ago and how muchI liked it this second time around I loved all the meta stuff it s pretty mindblowing And I m actually very fond of the three codas that make up the last quarter of the book I got a good chuckle when I realized that the three codas First Person, Second Person and Third Person are about three different minor characters from the main storyline, and the codas a March 2020 reread, just because It s surprising how much of this I forgot since I first read it 5 years ago and how muchI liked it this second time around I loved all the meta stuff it s pretty mindblowing And I m actually very fond of the three codas that make up the last quarter of the book I got a good chuckle when I realized that the three codas First Person, Second Person and Third Person are about three different minor characters from the main storyline, and the codas are written in wait for it first person, second person and third person How did I miss that the first time through D4.5 stars What if the redshirt extras low ranking crew members on Star Trek The Chronicles of the Intrepid realized that whenever one of them accompanies the starship s officers on an away mission to a planet or somewhere, that crew member was extremely likely to be killed Naturally, this creates a dog eat dog situation where the long term members of the crew learn to disappear quickly whenever an officer comes around, and the newer members have a very high mortality rate Finally, a few of the junior crew members decide to try to get to the bottom of this mysterious phenomenon and, if possible, try to find a way to end it.This book is extremely funny in parts, especially if you re familiar with the original Star Trek and some of its characters and quirks, but it s really kind of an odd book at the same time Most of the book is a satire, a little on the superficial side and very snappy dialogue driven There s a lot to make fun of with Trek, as fond as I am of it, and it s not all about the callous and weird ways in which random crew members die I did think the captain here needed a few sexy alien ladies slinking up to him The answer to the mystery of why so many crew members are dying on this particular starship doesn t really hold water logically AT ALL, but I ve suspended disbelief on a lot shakier plot lines in my Trek watching over the years, and I was willing to roll with it.Then the story gets a little bitscrewy and a lotmeta, and at about the 70% mark the main story ends The rest of the book is three codas written from the points of view of three very minor characters from the first part of the story, telling a littleabout what happened in their lives after the main story ended They re interesting, but so very different in tone from the rest of the book that the contrast is a little jarring They re kind of sobering, in fact And no, that wasn t me you saw surreptitiously wiping away a tear as I turned the last page.3 1 2 stars I may decide to round up when I see how I feel about this in another day or two ETA I have in fact decided to round up, after chatting with Anne in the thread to her very funny review It made me realize that I recall this book with a lot of affection, despite its flaws.Content advisory fairly frequent F bombs, and some innuendos and crude talk in a few places


  6. Nataliya Nataliya says:

    2020 reread still so much funSooner or later the Narrative will come for each of usThanks to cultural osmosis even I, the person who according to a colleague of mine lost quite a few nerd points for having never seen a single Star Trek episode, am somehow familiar with the concept of redshirts the unfortunate extras whose lot is to die dramatically on screen just to pad the plot and remind the viewer that the near invincible main characters are indeed, so to say, in a real pickle 2020 reread still so much funSooner or later the Narrative will come for each of usThanks to cultural osmosis even I, the person who according to a colleague of mine lost quite a few nerd points for having never seen a single Star Trek episode, am somehow familiar with the concept of redshirts the unfortunate extras whose lot is to die dramatically on screen just to pad the plot and remind the viewer that the near invincible main characters are indeed, so to say, in a real pickleIn other words, crew deaths are a feature, not a bugAnd so the story goes a bunch of new crew members on a starship Intrepid discover that despite being to themselves very much real, they are little but the doomed Redshirts on the not so good Star Trek rip off third rate TV showIt s messed up that the most rational explanation for what does go on in this ship is that a television show intrudes on our reality and warps it But that s not the worst thing about it Jesus Christ, Finn said If that s not the worst thing, what is That as far as I can tell, Jenkins said, it s not actually a very good showWhen the bizarre and incomprehensible to any real reason logic of TV Narrative seizes control of their lives, the events and actions quickly turn rather cinematically idiotic, and a few crew members are invariably destined to die gruesome and pointless deaths while a few officers clearly the show s protagonists survive despite all odds Over the years, certain crew members have even learned to semi successfully game the system in order to survive Because what else can you do but succumb to the Narrative, no matter how poorly written and unfair it isWe ve already established whoever is writing us is an assholeThis was my first time reading anything by John Scalzi, and it kept me quite entertained, assuring that it will not be the last There was something about its constantly shifting style and message that suits my easily distractible nature I guess it was the constant oscillation between smart satire, slapstick comedy, eye rolling meta , sappy sentimentality and unexpected infusion of searching for the meaning of life and self discovery All together it creates an interesting combination that at times flows smoothly and at times teeters on the verge of losing its footing just a bit But overall it worked It worked even despite the honestly, quite unnecessary three codas stuck onto the ending if the book as though their only function was to pad the word count just a little bit I wish they were left out, and the ending just the way it was, abrupt and unexpected and yet completely necessary given the internal logic of the narrative was left to stand on its own 2020 edit I did not mind the codas this time go figure But even with the extra padding, the story workedWhether you re an extra or the hero, this story is about to end When it s done, whatever you want to be will be up to you and only you It will happen away from the eyes of any audience and from the hand of any writer You will be your own manI liked it, I really did I had fun reading it, and now I m trying to decide which Scalzi book I want to try next Thoughts And no, I ll never ever again will be able to look at any TV show without imagining the implications of the script governing the lives of real peopleOther science fiction shows had science advisers and consultants, Hanson pointed out It s science fiction, Weinstein said The second part of that phrase matters too But you re making it bad science fiction, Hester said And we have to live in it4 stars


  7. Alejandro Alejandro says:

    Death the Final FateThese are the voyages of the Starship Intrepid.Its continuing mission,to kill naive new crewmembers,to seek out cheap thrills and easy lamentations,to boldly go where no redshirt has gone before I knew since some time ago about this novel but until now I had been able to read it, and I am truly glad that I did it One of the best Star Trek novels without really being about Star Trek.It s a common knowledge but again for those neophytes to the topic, let me explain th Death the Final FateThese are the voyages of the Starship Intrepid.Its continuing mission,to kill naive new crewmembers,to seek out cheap thrills and easy lamentations,to boldly go where no redshirt has gone before I knew since some time ago about this novel but until now I had been able to read it, and I am truly glad that I did it One of the best Star Trek novels without really being about Star Trek.It s a common knowledge but again for those neophytes to the topic, let me explain that Red Shirt is a term that people started to use refering for those poor crewmembers, sometimes even without a proper name, accompanying the main officers of the Starship Enterprise, in the Original Series of Star Trek Usually they wear red shirts due that Security Officers wear uniforms with shirts colored in red And to add a feeling of danger and realism to the series, the scriptwriters decided to kill some low level crewmember in each away mission while visiting some dangerous planet or some mysterious space station.This recurring gag became so common in the Original Series that the term of Red Shirt or Redshirt is usually apply to any extra killed in any TV series and or film to obtain thrills from the audience.John Scalzi, the author, came up with this brilliant story merging smart humor, nasty dangers and wonderful science fiction, consolidating a great novel, obviously appealing to any Trekker, but also to any reader interested in science fiction in general or even looking for an amusing book.Without a doubt, one of the most polemic topics in any story is when a character is killed off the narrative People may think that killing a secondary or even tertiary character cannot do a negative effect to the audience, but one has to think about that for some people may be a non important character but it may be relevant even the reason of why the reader is keeping up with the story Also, giving less value to the life of a character just because he she wasn t important on the story, in a way, is like provoking an effect of not value a life if they haven t acomplished something worthy of mention in history.Killing characters always is controversial.If they became extremely popular, it can t alienate audience to keep up reading watching any series Also, it s sad to think about all the lost potential for that character since he she is no longer in the story Even worse if one realizes that he she was killed off just to avoid to became a characterpopular than certain other key character that the writer may appreciateBut definitely, the worst of all is when a character is introduced, giving him her a lot of developing but is killed off before of acomplishing anything of value to the story.And of course, we have the issue of returning back from the dead That happens when the characters are too important to keep them dead and or to make an event about the resurrection of the characters That certainly has its positive and negative repercussions.Getting back to the novel, while it s basic premise is to exploit the recurring gag of killing off characters to get cheap thrills, also this excellent book is a great example of a crafty story with priceless science fiction and fantasy.The only bad thing that I can think of is a section once the story ends, with three codas telling like side stories about some characters whom appeared on the book Honestly, I didn t need that, it was like anti climatic having finished the novel and then finding those codas , that they didn t give me any info of importante to change my impression of the novel I don t know if they were included only to reach a 300 page level, that in previous times I have commented that if a story is good, it s doesn t need lot of pages to be seen as a worthy material But again, if you opted of not reading those additional codas to the book, well, don t do it You won t miss much.However, the novel is indeed a fine masterpiece of crafty reading.Highly recommended


  8. Kemper Kemper says:

    Halfway through this book, I was thinking that I could do something funny in this review with Will Farrell s character from the movie Stranger Than Fiction But then it had to go and actually reference Stranger Than Fiction and ruin my plans.Thanks for nothing, Scalzi Anyhow, in the distant future the starship Intrepid exploresthe galaxy with a crew led by a bold captain and his logical science officer A group of newly assigned crew members quickly notice that odd and bizarre things happen when Halfway through this book, I was thinking that I could do something funny in this review with Will Farrell s character from the movie Stranger Than Fiction But then it had to go and actually reference Stranger Than Fiction and ruin my plans.Thanks for nothing, Scalzi Anyhow, in the distant future the starship Intrepid exploresthe galaxy with a crew led by a bold captain and his logical science officer A group of newly assigned crew members quickly notice that odd and bizarre things happen when they get around the captain and his senior staff Routine missions become dangerous The basic laws of physics seem to break down Common sense is forgotten And god help you if you re one of the unlucky bastards who ends up on an away team with them because you re probably coming back to the ship in a body bag Assuming there s enough left of your corpse to bring back at all.Scalzi took what could be a one joke premise from the old gag about the extras wearing red on Star Trek being disposable and having a very short shelf life, and he turned that concept into a funny and interesting examination on the nature of fiction and free will I don t want to say too much about the plot because the twists and turns are part of the fun, but I liked how the book went off in a couple of surprising directions.While I had fun with it, Scalzi s style is becoming a bit odd to me, and that was enough to take it from four stars to three He skips almost any kind of descriptive writing to focus almost exclusively on dialogue driven plot For example, there isn t a single word about what the ship or the characters look like Skimping on the exposition in the interest of rushing through the main part of the story makes it compulsively readable, but it also makes it feel a bit thin So while I was completely into the story of the crew fighting against their fate, a fewdetails about what that looked like would have been welcome.One other minor nitpick view spoiler If television hasn t existed for centuries, how are all of the crew instantly aware of things like commercial breaks and the tricks routinely used to heighten the drama I guess in light of the conversation near the end before the codas, you could make a case that this is part of the even larger narrative, but it was strange hide spoiler Despite some of my problems with it, Scalzi still writes with heart and humor, and sci fi could use a lotof that


  9. Matthew Matthew says:

    It s never a good thing to wear a red shirt in sci fi .Bad things happen to guys in red shirts .You always have a couple of disposable extras for an away mission .But, what if they figured it out and decided to do something about it This book was excellent I am very impressed with how creative, funny, and moving it is all at the same time It pokes fun at cheesy sci fi television while honoring it at the same time Scalzi has become one of my favorites for his creativity in a genre It s never a good thing to wear a red shirt in sci fi .Bad things happen to guys in red shirts .You always have a couple of disposable extras for an away mission .But, what if they figured it out and decided to do something about it This book was excellent I am very impressed with how creative, funny, and moving it is all at the same time It pokes fun at cheesy sci fi television while honoring it at the same time Scalzi has become one of my favorites for his creativity in a genre that can easily get repetitive If you love sci fi books and television, you owe it to yourself to check this one out


  10. Lyn Lyn says:

    Redshirts A Novel with Three Codas by John I m not Gene Roddenberry but I dressed up like him once for Halloween Scalzi could have also been Redshirts Existential Musings in the Internet Age by a Satire Minded Child of the Eighties Winner of the Hugo and the Locus Award, I can see the spinning wheels in the minds of the award voters selection committee of both trophies A fun, unique twist on an old Star Trek gag but then he goes and ends it with an existential quest for meaning amidst Redshirts A Novel with Three Codas by John I m not Gene Roddenberry but I dressed up like him once for Halloween Scalzi could have also been Redshirts Existential Musings in the Internet Age by a Satire Minded Child of the Eighties Winner of the Hugo and the Locus Award, I can see the spinning wheels in the minds of the award voters selection committee of both trophies A fun, unique twist on an old Star Trek gag but then he goes and ends it with an existential quest for meaning amidst spiritual ennui and isolation with a timely cultural message and pulls a satisfying ending out of the hat No kidding.I think it was the three codas, told from first, second and third person perspectives that put this over the top, the element in this book that lifted it deep over the centerfielder s head and into the bleachers As Jeff Lebowski would say it really tied the room together A fun mix of Galaxy Quest, Weird Science, Stranger than Fiction, and Heinlein s The Number of the Beast, Redshirts is funny, entertaining, quirky, baffling, mind bending and thought provoking and even, yes, touching There are some gaps in the narrative, some stretches in the already strained science, and some oddly thin characterizations, but all the same this is a winner.One recurring theme that I notice in Scalzi s work is a playful satire tribute of sci fi classics Redshirts to Star Trek, Old Man s War to Heinlein, Fuzzy Nation to Little Fuzzy and The Android s Dream to Philip K Dick I like what he s done with the place, Live Long and Prosper


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