Redshirts by John Scalzi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Like many others, I was first turned onto John Scalzi through Old Man’s War, which I consider to be one of my favorite science fiction novels. Since reading that, I resolved to read more Scalzi and, although some time passed, I finally got my hands on Redshirts.
Redshirts is little hard to describe. It’s essentially a novel that follows the nameless extras of a fiction cheesy sci-fi tv show called Intrepid. However, you can’t help but think about Star Trek as you read the novel.
At first, Scalzi plays that concept for all the humor that it’s worth and, trust me, it’s good for more than a few laughs. But it’s also so much more than that. After the comedic value has run its course, the plot takes a left turn and the novel becomes something totally different and so completely meta that it’s almost absurd. But that’s also when it get’s really good too.
It’s hard to go into more detail without giving away key plot points, but adventures ensue and the story gets not one, but three endings, each told from a different point of view.
Overall, I thought Redshirts was a really cool novel. It probably won’t go down as one of my favorites, but I still enjoyed it considerably and would recommend it to any sci-fi fan, but especially Star Trek fans.