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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews

Look To Windward

Copyright 2000 by Iain M. Banks

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SOJALS rating:     
one SOJALS point one SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Mediocre (2/5)

I first read this on the 24th August 2003.

Chel have discovered that its disastrous civil war was caused, to some extent at least, by Culture's misapplied good intentions. As such, a secret government faction of Chelgrians has decided to enact a terrible vengeance on Ziller and his Culture friends.

However Ziller is on the Culture Orbital Masaq and one might think he and the other fifty billion inhabitants would be fairly well protected.

Not bad and I know some people absolutely love this stuff. The problem is that it's not my kind of SF. I treasure Banks' straight fiction but have never much enjoyed his SF writing. Moments after reading the final pages and putting down the book I find that the whole vast scope of the novel is gone, dissipated into the air around me. I barely remember Ziller. What Ziller may have done; why he was targeted; how or whether he avoided it is lost to me. It's gone like dust in the wind. In a breath the whole Culture universe Ziller inhabited is vaporized and lost. Is this some attribute of the novel? Or have I discovered some dark power within myself? At last, Ha-ha-ha-ha! "Max, Destroyer of Worlds"! Writers beware - your imagined worlds will not last. I shall stride across stars like grains of sand, dispensing oblivion with every flick of my fingers.

Loaded on the 31st December 2014.
Cover of Look To Windward
Cover art by Jerry Vanderstelt

Reviews of other works by Iain M. Banks:
The Player Of Games
Against A Dark Background