Customer Review

147 of 163 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great book, terrible Kindle conversion, 15 Oct. 2010
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This review is from: Surface Detail (Culture series Book 9) (Kindle Edition)
This is a great addition to the Culture series of books - was very much looking forward to it, and enjoyed it an awful lot. I won't go into the detail of plot, characters etc. any more than saying that it was great, they were interesting, etc.

As a book, it deserves five stars. The hardcover version would have got this from me.

However, I read the Kindle version, and the Kindle version has been lazily put together, I'm guessing from an earlier manuscript version. It has missing or half completed paragraphs. Very frustrating.

It flows quite often from one sub-chapter to the next without a line break to let you know - you're reading the dialogue from one perspective, get confused after a few lines and a paragraph later realise that you've got to go back as it's actually another character's dialogue.

There are spelling / word usage mistakes - not hundreds, but definitely 30+, which sometimes you can skim past but a few had me furrowing my brow trying to think what Banks actually meant/wrote.

In short, I still enjoyed it, but am putting in a complaint to Amazon about their shoddy work.
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Tracked by 6 customers

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Showing 21-30 of 31 posts in this discussion
Posted on 24 Dec 2010 10:52:09 GMT
Simon M says:
I'm about 75% of the way through on the Kindle, and am really enjoying the experience. I have came across perhaps 4 or 5 typo's, but these are extremely minor and very obvious what the correct word was meant to be.

As for missing and half -completed paragraphs, really? I have not noticed any of these (so far) and I think they would be pretty obvoius?

Or perhaps Amazon have already fixed some of these issues, as I have only purchased the book recently?

In reply to an earlier post on 30 Dec 2010 21:29:37 GMT
A. Patten says:
@Simon M:

If you have an affected version, you WILL notice them and they are GLARINGLY obvious.

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Jan 2011 12:49:28 GMT
Simon M says:
...and in that case, its very clear that Amazon have now resolved these issues, as I have seen no problems.

I can therefore heartily recommend the Kindle version of this book to potential new readers!

Posted on 22 May 2011 15:47:01 BDT
[Deleted by the author on 22 May 2011 15:48:21 BDT]

Posted on 24 May 2011 04:46:32 BDT
Alexander says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

Posted on 25 May 2011 11:53:31 BDT
Simon M says:
OK, having read the Kindle edition, I spotted these "jumps" where the story suddenly changes suddenly, in about 12 places (I have bookmarked them all for reference).

But aren't these supposed to be there ? Having looked again at them, they look to me like a delibreate device the author has used, and as such it did not impact my enjoyment of the book at all (which is superb by the way).

The only way to check is to compare with the paper version I suppose, but I suspect the ebook is identical to the real thing.

Posted on 9 Jun 2011 16:32:40 BDT
Mrs V Fox says:
Will not buy this then as I would use the Kindle version! It has to be correct and less expensive to download. Big disapointment

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Jun 2011 19:24:04 BDT
Simon M says:
In my view the Kindle edition seems perfect as-is, has no problems, and is a fantastic and enjoyable read. The so called "jumps" and "problems" are actually a deliberate literary device used by the Author as far as I can tell.

Posted on 3 Jul 2011 08:42:35 BDT
TechnicalBoy says:
Just finished the Kindle version, and noted one or two odd hyphens around, but nothing big. I'd gladly recommend the kindle version. If anyone has any queries over the "jumps" mentioned here, can they let me know, and I'll check the paper version (I've got that too)...

In fact, I bought the Kindle version after having the "real" versioin just for portability. Iain Banks is fantastic, but his books are BIG, and the facility to slip the Kindle into a jacket pocket, and read it on the bus was a major plus for me.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Dec 2011 14:25:51 GMT
You seem to be suggesting that reviewers f the Kindle version should either i) not post reviews or ii) post reviews based on a version of the text they don't have. Neither of those strikes me as being a particularly rational idea.