Ok I just finished reading My Outcast State by Edward Mckeown. I have to say up front that the book surprised and delighted me with its well drawn characters and fast paced plot. It is classified as science fiction but to me personally it was more like hard science fiction due to the tech details and the approach taken with the machines and robots.
I thoroughly enjoyed the interactions between Muro and Rick. In her struggles to overcome her inherent programming and defend her friends Muro showed us a core personality trying to emerge from control of her long dead masters. In the process she makes mistakes killing others and putting her friends into extreme danger. As the M-7 robot I certainly would not want to tangle with her. As the Muro personality becomes aware of actions and the harm she does with her actions or inactions she becomes real to the readers. Rick has his own problems as well. A lack of confidence in himself and a driving need to protect others often comes into conflict in the novel. The Collector and Dresko are the other stand out characters to me as well as the cat girl who Rick saves from death.
There is violence in the book. Some of the scenes I literally had to stop reading for a bit. Mostly because it took me a few minutes to process the level of sheer destructive power that Muro had at her command. The blood and gore did not botherme. The casual way Muro would rip someone apart unsettled me a bit. But by and large the book is a good fast fun filled ride to the finish. I really enjoyed the comic moments between Rick and Muro. Muro and the cat girl’s interactions soon became some of my favorite scenes in the book. The Collector was a suitable villain for the story and Dresko went from enemy to guarded friend by the end of the novel. I wI will say that I enjoyed the novel immensely and give it a four star rating. Pick up a copy and read it.
I will be reading Once a hero by ed next. I will put up a review of it here once I have finished with it as well. Keep up the good work Ed.
“All of us struggle with good and evil. Finding the way out of darkness is up to each of us.”