Iain M Banks - 'Culture series' Page 12

  • Khanivor 20 Nov 2014 17:50:43 44,456 posts
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    Matter is actually a good one to start with I'd say. It takes a good while to get going, eases you into things. And the Culture is more in the background.

    player of Games was my first Culture book. All my gaming rigs have been named Jurnegh for the last 20 years or so.
  • Deleted user 20 November 2014 18:22:02
    @Khanivor I'd have to disagree, but then again I'm an awkward sod and thought Matter and Surface Detail were two of the most disproportionately unlikeable books in the series. I still have my copy of Hydrogen Sonata unopened as I didn't have a chance to read it before the news broke of his illness and subsequent death and I really, really, really don't want the last book of his I read to be a disappointment.

    Edited by FuzzyZealot at 18:23:18 20-11-2014
  • cov 20 Nov 2014 18:59:31 2,269 posts
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    The quarry is a very poignant, fitting and appropriate last novel
  • Deleted user 20 November 2014 20:09:12
    @FuzzyZealot It's better than the other two you mentioned. Can't really call it a return to former glory, but it's definitely better.
  • TheJackKetch 1 Dec 2014 10:36:42 170 posts
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    Anyone know of a decent author who does space opera like Iain M Banks? Going to miss my annual fix with him no longer with us.
    Read all the obvious ones like Peter Hamilton, Alistair Reynolds and Neal Asher.
  • Immaterial 1 Dec 2014 11:26:52 2,402 posts
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    Can I recommend Anne Leckie's Ancilliary series? Smart ships, clones and all that gubbins. Different economic model to her societies, but very well thought out.

    edit: link fail.

    Edited by Immaterial at 11:27:56 01-12-2014
  • TheJackKetch 1 Dec 2014 11:32:37 170 posts
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    Cheers, will give them a try
  • Deleted user 4 February 2015 14:21:51
    I've been reading Surface detail for what seems like ages but it's one of his better books.

    I'm actually quite sad that I only have one more to go and there's no more culture novels...ever. :(
  • Immaterial 4 Feb 2015 14:52:39 2,402 posts
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    This is why I have never read The Quarry. That way, I've still got one Iain Banks book to read (well, two if you include his Whisky guide).
  • Deleted user 4 February 2015 14:58:02
    Ha. Same here. I really don't know when I'll read it.
  • Deleted user 14 April 2015 23:35:37
    I only found this out this evening:

    Elon Musk Names SpaceX Drone Ships in Honor of Sci-Fi Legend.

    Glad he didn't use the drone names from the books.
  • pogomeister 16 Jul 2016 20:54:47 1,706 posts
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    Just finished consider phlebus after only 2 years, am a slow reader though! Is it worth jumping right into player of games or maybe leaving it a while
  • JoeBlade 16 Jul 2016 21:09:06 5,089 posts
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    pogomeister wrote:
    Just finished consider phlebus after only 2 years, am a slow reader though! Is it worth jumping right into player of games or maybe leaving it a while
    The Culture novels can mostly be considered stand alone stories. There's an overarching tone but that's about it, very few characters even extend beyond one book.

    Reading them chronologically (as in: release date) isn't even a must but I would recommend leaving Player of Games and especially Excession for last simply because they are the most awesomest shit ever :p
  • oldskooldeano 16 Jul 2016 23:04:34 3,055 posts
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    Considering it took you two years to read the last one, I wouldn't leave it too long mate. ;)
  • neems 16 Jul 2016 23:39:53 4,860 posts
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    Player of Games is my favourite Iain M. Banks novel. I say dive in.
  • Mr_Sleep 17 Jul 2016 00:47:54 23,445 posts
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    I think Consider Phlebus is one of his more dense books in tone and narrative complication so if you made it through that then you should find some of the others a swifter read. I really should re-read these books as I barely remember most of them. I do remember that Player of Games is boss though.

    Edited by Mr_Sleep at 00:48:14 17-07-2016
  • AwesomeWells 17 Jul 2016 00:53:47 1,119 posts
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    Excession totally baffled me, must go back and try it again sometime.

    Definitely go for Player of Games and follow that up with Use of Weapons. Both are brilliant.
  • Mr_Sleep 17 Jul 2016 00:56:54 23,445 posts
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    Only Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow has fucked with my head more than Feersum Endjinn, that makes Excession seem simple in comparison.
  • andytheadequate 17 Jul 2016 01:04:20 9,211 posts
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    I've read 5 of his books so far and I found Player of Games to be by far his weakest one. It was incredibly predictable and the concept was a bit rubbish. Am I missing something?
  • Deleted user 17 July 2016 08:58:45
    Excession was my first culture experience, I had to read it three times to fully grasp the concepts and shear majesty of the universe created by Banks. The closing comments from the books title name was absolute genius.
  • mumtoucher 17 Jul 2016 09:05:49 707 posts
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    Use of weapons is my favourite. It's an absolutely perfect book. The end as well - absolute genius. Look to windward I'd rate as the funniest, made me laugh out loud on the train a few embarrassing times.
  • mumtoucher 17 Jul 2016 09:08:13 707 posts
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    Can anyone recommend another Sci-fi opera author, I've read a few but none get close to Iain.M.Banks IMO.

    Edited by mumtoucher at 09:08:56 17-07-2016
  • Immaterial 17 Jul 2016 10:35:34 2,402 posts
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    Anne Leckie's Ancillaries series (clones, smart ships and stuff) or Paul Macauley's The Quiet War (relativistic (?) space flight with a colonised solar system) might suit.
  • oldskooldeano 17 Jul 2016 21:54:05 3,055 posts
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    @mumtoucher Peter F. Hamilton? In particular the Commonwealth Saga, Judas Unchained and Pandora's Star. A practically omniscient human civilisation, Galaxy spanning travel and a great unknown. Head spinning stuff.
  • andytheadequate 18 Jul 2016 00:18:36 9,211 posts
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    Immaterial wrote:
    Anne Leckie's Ancillaries series (clones, smart ships and stuff) or Paul Macauley's The Quiet War (relativistic (?) space flight with a colonised solar system) might suit.
    I've read the first one and I agree it's pretty good; not quite as good as Banks but we'll worth a read. I find a lot of Sci Fi stuff to be badly written and a bit cringe worthy, so would also be interested in any recommendations.
  • mumtoucher 18 Jul 2016 07:02:29 707 posts
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    I couldn't get into P. F. Hamilton. Perhaps I'll give it another shot. Which one should I start with?

    I'm actually half way through the Malazan series (which is excellent) so any scifi is gonna be a few months away yet :-)
  • grey_matters 18 Jul 2016 07:46:29 5,281 posts
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    mumtoucher wrote:
    I couldn't get into P. F. Hamilton. Perhaps I'll give it another shot. Which one should I start with?

    I'm actually half way through the Malazan series (which is excellent) so any scifi is gonna be a few months away yet :-)
    The Reality Dysfunction is probably a good place to start. It takes a long time setting up the universe (maybe 500 pages!) but if you stick with it there is a good pay off.
  • Mekanik 18 Jul 2016 08:44:32 4,688 posts
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    grey_matters wrote:
    mumtoucher wrote:
    I couldn't get into P. F. Hamilton. Perhaps I'll give it another shot. Which one should I start with?

    I'm actually half way through the Malazan series (which is excellent) so any scifi is gonna be a few months away yet :-)
    The Reality Dysfunction is probably a good place to start. It takes a long time setting up the universe (maybe 500 pages!) but if you stick with it there is a good pay off.
    Agree with this, although the Reality Dysfunction series of books are in their own separate universe. Pretty much all his other books (starting at Pandora's Star) are set within the same persistent universe and have a lot of the same characters appearing and disappearing throughout.

    Give him time, these are proper Space Opera books.

    Also, Use of Weapons is my fave Banks sci-fi book. That ending...
  • mumtoucher 18 Jul 2016 09:38:34 707 posts
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    @Mekanik you don't get much better endings do you. So so dark.
  • Mekanik 18 Jul 2016 09:52:13 4,688 posts
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    @mumtoucher Absolutely. And its one of the few book endings you really really dont see coming.
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