Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle Amazon Music Unlimited for Family Learn more Fitbit



There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

on 5 April 2015
Wouldn't it be great to see the Culture brought to the big screen instead of the latest sci-fi drivel that's coming of Hollywood these days.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 June 2013
I enjoy the culture novels - though some more than other. This is my favourite so far. Don't be put off by the preceding one in the series!
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 30 July 2012
This is my third Banks novel having been greatly disturbed in my youth by Consider Phlebas and only recently returning to him with Player Of Games (which was excellent).

Excession gets off to a good start but any hopes of an original story soon fade away. The idea of a mysterious artifact arriving and doing odd things is SO last century. Yes, this is basically a futuristic retelling of 2001: A Space Odyssey but one which doesn't actually add much.

Furthermore, the plot is somewhat thin and feels like a short story padded out into a novel. Sadly, the padding in this case revolves around some silly conspiracy which tries but fails to have much impact on things and some awful (and I mean awful) switches - just as the pace goes up a notch in the latter stages of the book - to whole chapters laboriously describing some other side character's history or location in tiresome detail. It's always a bad sign for me when I have to speed read whole chapters "just to get back to the action". But this happened several times in Excession. It has really put me off Banks now because I don't enjoy books where an author takes 1000 words to describe something when 100 would do (why do they do this? Do they have a minimum quota of words to meet?).

On a brighter note the technology is brilliant as ever for Banks and the ideas explored of vastly superior ship Minds having crises of confidence, feeling fear and even shutting themselves down gives the AI side some depth (though again, I can't help thinking this is just the HAL story being re-done). The geeky ship to ship communication logs are also just what us sci-fi buffs enjoy and the space battles are top-notch.

The ending, well, to me it was a bit of a let down to an overly long book with much weary padding.

In summary: Artifact arrives, thinks we're all unworthy, goes home.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 26 August 2016
He always ends them well. It pleases me greatly that questions are mostly answered. Of course, there's lots left to the imagination.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 26 August 2014
Coming back to this again, in Kindle form, was a joy.
One of the greatest series ever they will be great movies eventually.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 28 August 2016
I just love all the plots and sub plots, the characters and the interactions of the great minds within the Culture, if only...
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 25 June 2015
absolutely great. nothing more needs to be said! if you have not read iain m banks....read this. it will blow your mind
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 11 August 2013
An wonderful modern space opera set in the richly detailed culture universe. Wish I was there. Would recommend to all.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 28 June 2014
Gets a bit confusing two many minds but a very well written book not enough adventure really for my own sci fi likes
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 2 April 2000
AMAZING It renewed by interest in sci-fi books and I went on to buy the whole series! Can I say anything more!
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse