Between the rigid "he said" dialog, and the narrator's unwillingness to differentiate character voices (I had no idea one of the characters was female until the book used a gender pronoun) it was just grating to listen to.
Redshirts has just won the 2013 Locus Award for Best Science Fiction Novel. It is also nominated for the Hugo Award which will be announced at the World Science Fiction Convention at the end of August.
Does that mean the story is good? Probably.
Yes, it made me think of some of the inconsistency that many Sci-fi & Fantasy book have and was somewhat humorous in point these things out.
It inspired me to examine the stories I listen to, so I don't get suck in the problem that this book points out.
Had trouble keeping my attention on this the whole time I was listening to it.
If you're a fan of Star Trek, Babylon 5, Firefely, etc., this is a great book for you.
Anything in the Star Trek series, but it's closer in kind to Galaxy Quest.
Krazinsky. You can hear what a jerk the guy is from Wheaton's performance, and you really get the personality of the character.
I laughed quite a bit, and there were some very poignant moments that had me tearing up for sure.
Wil Wheaton has become my favourite performer for audiobooks. He led me to Ready Player One, and now to Redshirts. I'm twice as likely to pick up a book he is the reader on than any other audiobook.
Great genre-subversion story, and very funny. If you don't like meta-meta-fiction then this is not the book for you. The narration was very entertaining; what Wheaton lacks in distinction between voices, he more than makes up for with enthusiasm and tone that matches the material perfectly. Another reviewer said his penchant for dropping the "he said" and "she said" to the point of distractedness and at first it bothered me too but I got over it. The codas are a little too long but mostly funny.
The story was great! it was clear what the angle is by the name, but it went the way I wanted it to go as a reader. The only bad thing was the epilog.
Will was great, he is always great.
laugh my head off
If not for the epilog this would be a perfect book
The dilemma here is that the "story" was great. I laughed. I cried. What more can you ask from a book?
The writing, however, was painful. In the dialog (of which there is a lot) every sentence ends with "(character name) said".
Unfortunately, the performance needs all of these "said"s since Will Weaton does not use different voices for each character. Without the continued explanation of who is talking, there is no way to know.
It was so painful that I was going to ask for a refund after the first chapter, but I was driving and by the time I got to my destination, I was hooked on the story.
This story reads like a book written by a screenwriter. Unable to deal with the fact that in a book, you don't put the character's name at the start of each line, the author just tacked "said" to the end (unless the character whispered, exclaimed, cried out et cetera).
Maybe I am spoiled by Christian Rummel's performance of the Lost Fleet series, an epic story with dozens of characters, each with a unique voice, but this book was painful.
Now for the surprise ending...
If you can get past the writing style and the performance, the STORY is worth it!
Oho yes. I even bought this book for my friend for Christmas. Yes yes yes.
The most meta part of the book: when they went back into time and all the stuff happened. Oh my freaking god.
Wil Wheaton is fantastic. I probably would have enjoyed this book without him, but it made it so much better.
I laughed constantly. Even if it was actually 'funny,' the craziness of what was happening made me chuckle.
I can't even explain how amazing it was. Buy this book omg.
I didn't know what I was in for. Sure, the title promised a humorous look at the life of a Star Trek-style "redshirt," and it delivered on that account.
But REDSHIRTS is also a wonderful look at the tropes of genre TV production. It's easy to get snarky in metafiction like this, but REDSHIRTS maintains its affectionate tone throughout.
Most surprising was how much heart the book had. With such an overtly funny title and premise, the emotional weight of the book snuck up on me.
And the choice of Wil Wheaton as narrator added another level of meta to the production!