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Inversions Paperback – 27 May 1999

4.1 out of 5 stars 113 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; New Ed edition (27 May 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857237633
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857237634
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.8 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 113 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,377 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Amazon Review

Science fiction readers know that Iain Banks writes "respectable" novels (such as The Wasp Factory) while his alter ego Iain M. Banks produces equally well-written but often more playful sci-fi--most famously, the gaudy and galaxy-spanning Culture series. In Inversions, Banks is being tricky again. Besides extra moons in the sky and stories of devastating meteor showers that toppled a former Empire, this novel's squalid, pre-industrial world seems to have no sci-fi elements. The two entwined stories feature a woman who becomes personal physician to one kingdom's absolute monarch, and the male bodyguard of a rival and more "progressive" country's Cromwell-like Protector. Both protagonists are mysterious outsiders from farther away than the King or Protector can ever imagine. Readers of Banks's other science fiction will spot the clues to their origins. Others may be slightly puzzled, especially by a seeming miracle which intervenes when the doctor faces torture--but can still enjoy the elegant narrative reversals, reflections and echoes. There are also generous helpings of blood, violence, poisoning, ingenious deceits and high excitement, spiced with political philosophy. Banks continues his pleasant habit of never repeating himself. --David Langford

Review

A fantastic, awe-inspiring book ... I can't imagine anyone not being won over by this deeply entertaining, thought-provoking and humane story (EXPRESS)

Taut, hilarious and wicked (MAIL ON SUNDAY)

Compulsive Banksian reading ... thoughtful, intelligently bloody stuff (SFX)

Captivating ... incisive ... as sublime as ever (TIME OUT)

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