RedshirtsOctober 2, 2013
There are times for serious reads, there are time for fun reads. This one belongs to the second category, despite quite serious in the epilogue.
The Redshirts is capitalizing on one of the Star Trek adage: “The Redshirts always die.” The redshirts in here refer to crews in Star Trek’s Enterprise who wear, well, redshirts. The redshirts are designated for engineering and security section. Somehow, the death toll of redshirts is significantly higher than the one wearing yellowshirts (command and navigation) or blueshirts (science and medics), hence the adage.
This novel can be approached from two point of view. It can be seen as one bad TV episode, or a parody. I prefer to use the second approach, which is to take this novel lightly. In order to fully enjoy it, you must take away all your prejudice and simply follow the logic given by the novel, no matter how impossible it is. And I guarantee you, it is a fun read, at least it gave me several good laugh.
Despite its light approach, actually the ending (the epilogue, I mean) is quite serious. It questions its own approach, in quite a philosophical way. I can even say that the whole gist is in the epilogue. (Cannot tell to much without spoiling the entire story). Having won Hugo award tells us something, that the novel is not just a parody. It is indeed telling us something.
Verdict, a decent 4 stars. (I find it difficult to give a parody a 5 stars)