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Redshirts by John Scalzi
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Redshirts (edition 2012)

by John Scalzi

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,2212332,892 (3.79)1 / 240
Member:sawyl
Title:Redshirts
Authors:John Scalzi
Info:Gollancz (2012), Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library, ebooks
Rating:****1/2
Tags:science fiction, 2012

Work details

Redshirts by John Scalzi

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English (230)  German (1)  Dutch (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (233)
Showing 1-5 of 230 (next | show all)
I have very mixed feelings about this. Part of it is because it has so much fun with Star Trek which amused me. Part of it was that it trivialized death and that disturbed me somewhat. (“In other words, crew deaths are a feature, not a bug,” Cassaway said, dryly.) It played with the idea of what is reality and that intrigued me. Overall, I liked it and its codas. I'd read it again, but not for a while.

Before giving it to a young adult, I would suggest reading it for yourself. It does have a good amount of cussing in it; I found it to be appropriate for the characters. There was enough that I did notice it, though.

If you like science fiction or Star Trek, I think you'd find the book amusing. I certainly don't regret the time I spent reading it. It is certainly in my list of books I would recommend to people with any sense of humor and a knowledge of Star Trek. ( )
  Jean_Sexton | Jul 16, 2016 |
Redshirts is a pastiche on the original Star Trek. As a premise it's interesting, and Scalzi executes it well. However it's not really enough for a full length book. I can see Redshirts working very well as a 90 minute movie though. 

All through Redshirts there are little chuckles and wry smiles. The plot is an observation of the sort of tricks series writers use to keep audience attention.  So Redshirts is a meta story more than it is its own story. Redshirts is full of Scalzi's trademark snarkiness and cleverness, which I happen to like.

If you are a writer or a fan of the original Star Trek, or even someone that despaired at the obvious killing of the Redshirts then you will probably enjoy Redshirts well enough. However it's a book to get from the library rather than one to buy full price. Personally I found the Old Man's War series way better than this. ( )
  jmkemp | Jul 5, 2016 |
Redshirts gave the sci-fi truism, "You don't want to wear a red shirt on landing-party duty" a metaphysical twist and didn't stop there. The main story was clever enough to stand on its own without the three codas. But those first, second, and third person accounts of how the fictional star fleet crew from the future brought real life changes to their present day counterparts are what took this from a light read to something really touching. ( )
  wandaly | Jun 30, 2016 |
More intriguing than I expected, and more quirky in the way I normally can't get into. I'm pragmatic & logical, empathizing more with the Vulcan characters than with the humans. I mean, right there, I'm distracted at the inconsistency I just noticed - shouldn't the book reference Vulcans and Terrans, rather? And so I expected less quirkiness, just because that's what I hoped for.

Anyway, back on track with this review. This was not quite was expected, which was more of a simple homage to the expendable characters of ST:TOS that focused on their ship life and away missions. I did not realize how 'meta' it would be, to the whole ST world, with the codas and all. So, what I'm saying is, that even though it was (in a way) a bit of a disappointment, I'm still giving it 4 stars.

And, finally, I agree with the reviewers who said it's not quite funny in the same way the blurbs imply. It's witty, clever, even sometimes joyful, but not joke-a-minute funny. Thank goodness. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 230 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Scalziprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hayden, Patrick NielsenEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lutjen, PeterCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wheaton, WilNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
Redshirts is dedicated to the following:

To Will Wheaton, whom I heart with all the hearty heartiness a heart can heart;

To Mykal Burns, my friend since the TRS-80 days at the Glendora Public Library;

And to Joe Mallozzi and Brad Wright, who took me to space with them.
First words
From the top of the large boulder he sat on, Ensign Tom Davis looked across the expanse of the cave toward Captain Lucius Abernathy, Science Officer Q'eeng and Chief Engineer Paul West perched on a second, larger boulder, and thought, Well, this sucks.
Quotations
"Someone who knows that no matter what, you don't deal upward on the chain of command," Dahl said. The crewman grinned.
"I don't think luck had much to do with it."
"That's it? 'The Box'?" Dahl said.

"If it makes you feel better to think it's an experimental quantum-based computer with advanced inductive artificial intelligence capacity, whose design origins comes to us from an advanced but extinct race of warrior-engineers, then you can think about it that way," Collins said.

"Is that actually what it is?" Dahl asked.

"Sure," Collins said . . .
“In other words, crew deaths are a feature, not a bug,” Cassaway said, dryly.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It's a prestige posting, and Andrew is even more thrilled to be assigned to the ship's xenobiology laboratory, with the chance to serve on "Away Missions" alongside the starship's famous senior officers.

Life couldn't be better... until Andrew begins to realize that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship's captain, its chief science officers, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations, and (3) sadly, at least one low-ranked crew member is invariably killed.

Unsurprisingly, the savvier members belowdecks avoid Away Missions at all costs. 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.

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Enjoying his assignment with the xenobiology lab on board the prestigious Intrepid, ensign Andrew Dahl worries about casualties suffered by low-ranking officers during away missions before making a shocking discovery about the starship's actual purpose.… (more)

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