Randall Garrett used to be one of the most appreciated science fiction writers of the 1960's, but his oeuvre is mostly and unjustly forgotten by now, even though most of his works, including this short story, are ingeniously written, extremely well-plotted and intriguing. A Spaceship Named McGuire tackles one of the problems most frequently discussed in science fiction: can a machine become endowed with personality and reason? Can it have a will of its own? Garrett's answer is apparently yes - the "title character" of the story is a state-of-the-art robot spaceship that goes crazy before even being properly put to work. The manufacturer hires an ingenious private detective, Daniel Oak to investigate and to find out whether it was sabotage that made the attempts to create a functional robot spaceship fail. What he finds out eventually is surprising for everyone, but the discovery comes only after lots of adventures and dangerous situations that Oak manages to solve marvelously. A Spaceship Named McGuire is an example of Garrett's writing at its best. Though many have criticized the story for ending in an abrupt manner, stopping right where it should begin, no critic can deny the merits of the novella in terms of character development, writing style and the succession of events. Humor at the level of words just as delicious as at the level of story weaving - puns and other types of word play are also at home in Garrett's universe. Randall Garret was a larger-than-life figure, a womanizer never afraid to engage in a fight and some of his characters, including detective Oak resemble him a lot, especially when it comes to conquering women, fights and bravado. The novella was written in the 1960's, a period of political turmoil and important scientific achievements, and the story grasps the spirit of the times in every aspect.