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Customer Review

4 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars counter-culture, 14 Feb. 2005
This review is from: The Algebraist (Hardcover)
I think Iain Banks is a brilliant writer. I have read and enjoyed most of his books and I collect signed first editions of his work. His books have by turn inspired and amused me. I love his wicked humour and his ability to make me care for his brilliant and fractured characters. But, all that means nothing. You're only as good as your last book, and let's be honest, this one's a turkey.
It seems that the great man has grown tired of the Culture. Rather than give the punters what they want (more Culture stories), Banks appears to be trying to escape from his fabulous utopian vision. The Algebraist is a plodding, overlong and useless book. The major plot turns out to be, hmm, not so major at all, and the sub-plots, which could have been soooo brilliant, (the Archimandrite, Taince, Saluus) are left disappointingly unexplored.
It's not all bad. Starting and finishing the book with HG was pretty good, although it's a pretty long journey. Colonel Hatherence was a fascinating character, but, she just didn't hang aroung long enough.
So, there you have it; Banksy is brilliant but not this time. If you want sprawling magnificence with characters that will become part of your life forever, don't waste time with this; read Use of Weapons, or The Bridge, or Espedair Street instead.
Cheers, HM
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 4 Dec 2012 14:48:45 GMT
I'll be honest: this book is fantastic.
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Review Details

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Reviewer

H. Mclean
(REAL NAME)   

Location: Canberra

Top Reviewer Ranking: 7,723,977