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Fierce contemporaneity, an acrobatic imagination, social comment, sardonic wit...the peculiar sub-culture of cult religion is a natural for Banks, and Luskentyrianism is a fine creation (THE TIMES)
One of the most relentlessly voyaging imaginations around (SCOTSMAN)
Entertaining...comically inspired (GUARDIAN)
Banks's remarkable juggling act, alternating his mainstream novels with his widly imaginative science fiction fantasies, is notable most of all for the continuting growth and assurance he displays in any genre... [WHIT is a] delicious satire on both the re (PUBLISHING NEWS) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
* Paperback reissue of a modern 'Pilgrim's Progress' - Iain Banks' WHIT. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The book's central character is Isis Whit, commonly called Is - though more formally known as Blessed or Beloved Isis. Isis is a Luskentyrian, a member of a religious sect founded by her grandfather, Salvador. Like him, she is very important to the faithful - she holds the position 'Elect of God' and is a future leader of the Luskentyrians. Home is High Easter Offerance - located in Scotland, on the banks of the River Forth. The book opens in May 1995, when Isis is nineteen years old and with the Festival of Love approaching. The Luskentyrians consider people born on the 29th of February very special - the Blessed Isis herself was born on that date. As a result, a Festival of Love is held every four years - at the end of May in the year preceding a Leap Year. As the end of May is nine months before the end of February and it is a Festival of Love, I'm sure you can figure out what happens at it...
Isis' cousin, Morag - while not strictly considered a missionary - has been living in London for six years. Based on her letters, it appears she has become a successful musician - an internationally renowned baryton soloist, no less. She had been due to return to High Easter Offerance for the festival, where she would have been the Guest of Honour.Read more ›
For me this is easily one of Banks' best books. It's the only one of his that you might seriously contemplate lending to your grandmother and is much more accessible to the Banks newcomer than much of his work. The mystery element which pervades the story is fascinating, making this an un-put-downable read. And there are enough searching questions about life, God and the world we live in to make this much more than just another mystery story. The quirks of Banks' writing style and the weirdness of his characters come across in the most engaging way. 450 pages will pass like they're 100.
She is sent out on a quest into the wider world to find a cousin who has disappeared, and begins a voyage of discovery about herself, the cult and its various members. Her most significant revelations, however, occur after she returns home.
This story is quirky and amusing with delightfully empathetic characters, and a lightness of touch in the writing. It's not a simple or facile tale though and it'll keep you thinking long after you finish it.
But it is at the higher levels where you find the true value of this book, because it forces open even closed minds on the trickiest of subjects, introducing it as it does in a dismarming, balanced, entertaining and unprejudiced way, lightly tugging at one's conscience and provoking a very considered personal response.
Cleverly done, as one would perhaps expect, but nonetheless both entertaining and rewarding throughout, and well worth the read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A really good read. An interesting story well told as you would expect from Mr BanksPublished on 18 Aug. 2014 by Amazon Customer