All Systems Red by Martha Wells

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The novella is set in a corporate driven future; the companies provide also the security droids for security in exploration missions.

The protagonist of the book is a droid – he likes to define himself Murderbot – who is responsible of the security of a scientific exploration in a distant planet.

The droid hacked the governor module, and thanks to this freedom act we are able to be part of his real thoughts: he loves tv series, does not like to socialize with the human companions and is terribly sarcastic. It’s clearly impossible not to love him.

The novella shows well built characters, and the plot is a mix of science fiction, action and thriller, all well homogenized. Too bad the book is so short, luckily it seems the author is working on follow ups, and I honestly wish to read more about the wonderful Murderbot.


* All Systems Red by Martha Wells ★★★★☆

*I read this book in english

[ARC] Miniatures by John Scalzi

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The book Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi, as the title hints, collects the short stories by John Scalzi (best known for Old Man’s War, Redshirt, and other sci-fi novels).

Some tales are about aliens living among us with their own life style, others are about computer and everyday objects with their own personality and opinions.

I’m not a fan of John Scalzi, but these short stories are very good and funny, a mix of science fiction and humor (and cats).

Thanks to the publisher for providing me the copy necessary to write this review.


* Miniatures by John Scalzi ★★★★

*I read this book in english

[ARC] Miniatures by John Scalzi

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Read this post in english


Il libro Miniatures: The Very Short Fiction of John Scalzi, come promette il titolo, raccoglie i racconti brevi di John Scalzi (noto per Old Man’s War, Redshirt, e altri romanzi e serie di fantascienza).

Diversi racconti sono centrati sul tema degli alieni che vivono tra noi con i loro usi e costumi, altri hanno come protagonisti computer e oggetti di uso quotidiano con una loro personalità.

Non sono una fan di John Scalzi, però questi racconti brevi sono decisamente ben realizzati e simpatici, una unione di fantascienza e umorismo (e gatti).

Ringrazio l’editore per avermi fornito la copia necessaria per scrivere questa recensione.


* Miniatures by John Scalzi ★★★★

*Ho letto questo libro in inglese

Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas R. Hofstadter

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This is the kind of book that inspires awe: for its physical dimension and for the specificity of the thematic, and it’s easy to grasp this even by browsing it.

The whole text is about the concept of “undecidability”, or how lots of disciplines (and also the reality) are based on the idea of different levels that do not communicate among them: it’s impossible to go from one level to the others.

This concept is expressed – in math – by one of Gödel’s theorem:

Any effectively generated formal system capable of expressing elementary arithmetic cannot be both consistent and complete. In particular, for any consistent, effectively generated formal theory that proves certain basic arithmetic truths, there is an arithmetical statement that is true,[2] but not provable in the system. ( from Wikipedia)

but it’s also present in other fields, from biology to informatics and the Artificial Intelligence theories, but also in art, as Escher’s drawings demonstrates, with their tendency to an unreal tri-dimensionality, the ultimate desire to get out from the painting itself.

The author has a deep knowledge on different fields, and he is able to integrate them in a single book; one example of his skill are the brilliant dialogues between Achilles and the Tortoise, structured as musical canons (taken from Bach works) and introducing the main theme of the chapter that follows.

I think it’s quite hard to understand everything the book could offer, maybe this could be possible only having a profound knowledge in different fields; I dealt better with the scientific themes (but I skipped some derivations), and worse with the musical ones (I listened and liked Bach, but I’m not able to associate a dialogue to a specific musical canon). I’m however sure that the main ideas will stick to the reader.

In the end it’s a good book, very interesting but one must be sure to want reading it, because it’s not an easy read.


* Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas R. Hofstadter ★★★☆☆½

*I read this book in italian

Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

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Ancillary Justice nel 2014 ha vinto tutto quello che poteva vincere: Hugo Award, Nebula Award, BSFA Award, Arthur C. Clarke Award e Locus Award, difficile quindi ignorarlo nel panorama della fantascienza moderna.

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Ancillary in 2014 won practically everything: Hugo Award, Nebula Award, BSFA Award, Arthur C. Clarke Award and Locus Award, it is difficult to ignore its contribution in the modern science fiction.

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