The National Midday Sun

Turn The Page => Literature => Topic started by: Nick on October 20, 2002, 15:59:46 PM

Title: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on October 20, 2002, 15:59:46 PM
Anybody like Iain Banks Fiction books? My Rush following seems to have run side by side with the releases of his books. The Wasp factory, The Bridge , The Crow road and Complicity are amongst his best IMO.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Stewart on October 20, 2002, 16:02:17 PM
Not read any of his books, but I saw the BBC adaptation of "the Crow Row" thought it was great, and I'm trying to find it on DVD!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Ashley_Davidson on October 20, 2002, 16:11:16 PM
That's like watching Pride & Prejudice on video insrtead of reading the classic book, just because Kate - look at my firm young boobs - Winslett is in it!  ;)

What would 'the Professor' say about that?  :o
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on October 20, 2002, 16:48:09 PM
Stewart,

You must read the wasp factory or complicity, he is a Scottish writer after all, actually come to think of it you may enjoy "Espedair street" about a rock band!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Reg on October 20, 2002, 17:23:20 PM
No.  Not read any Iain Banks.  This is the non-sci-fi name used by Iain M. Banks isn't it?

I've read some of Iain M. Banks sci-fi tho - extremely good.

Things like Inversions and Consider Phlebas.  I've got more of his waiting to be read that I got last Christmas.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Ron on October 20, 2002, 17:42:42 PM
QuoteThat's like watching Pride & Prejudice on video insrtead of reading the classic book, just because Kate - look at my firm young boobs - Winslett is in it!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Stewart on October 20, 2002, 18:31:49 PM
QuoteThat's like watching Pride & Prejudice on video insrtead of reading the classic book, just because Kate - look at my firm young boobs - Winslett is in it!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Ron on October 20, 2002, 18:41:21 PM
QuoteIs she?!

And one more DVD of Pride and Prejudice will be sold soon!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Stewart on October 21, 2002, 02:17:13 AM
Quote

And one more DVD of Pride and Prejudice will be sold soon!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Graham K on December 18, 2002, 21:50:05 PM
I haven't read his books, but I enjoyed a few pints with him in Edinburgh back in the 80s when he visited the Edinburgh University Sci Fi Soc. He seemed a down-to-earth, likeable kind of blokey-bloke bloke. My clearest memory of the evening's conversation is of his descriptions of his passion for nocturnal drunk driving whilst living in rural England... Of course we're all much older and wiser now.  ;)
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Chris Quartly on December 18, 2002, 22:12:37 PM
I heard that the Wasp Factory is ghory, if so I want it! ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Mark_Williams on December 19, 2002, 00:51:12 AM
The Wasp Factory is an excellent book

remember it's Iain M Banks and Iain Banks for two different styles
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Slim on December 20, 2002, 00:13:18 AM
QuoteAnybody like Iain Banks Fiction books? My Rush following seems to have run side by side with the releases of his books. The Wasp factory, The Bridge , The Crow road and Complicity are amongst his best IMO.


I read The Wasp Factory a few years ago .. fantastic.  About three years ago, maybe four .. I read Complicity as well.  Very good, but not quite so much to my taste as The Wasp Factory.

I bought a collection of his Iain M Banks stuff - the sci-fi stuff he does - but wasn't quite so impressed.  Very, very imaginative, but somehow not that interesting.

Slim
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Mark_Williams on January 04, 2003, 20:50:20 PM
you're just so hard to please
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on March 31, 2003, 05:22:40 AM
Iain Banks is excellent.
Feersum Enjinn is a good one for a first timer.

Cheers
Jon M

Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Reg on April 02, 2003, 04:32:37 AM
QuoteIain Banks is excellent.
Feersum Enjinn is a good one for a first timer.

Cheers
Jon M

Um, that's Iain M Banks (same guy I know) and you're right about Feersum Enjinn - an excellent book.  I've read 3 or 4 of his books now, and that's the best so far.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on April 05, 2003, 03:44:11 AM
Which ones have you read Reg SJ?

My favourites are;Use of Weapons, The Bridge, Inversions, Complicity and The Player of Games. Not yet read the new one and never finished Song of stone or CR(!). ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Reg on April 06, 2003, 05:59:43 AM
Just Reg will do!

Um, what've I read?

Inversions
Feersum Enjinn
Another one I can't remember the title of.

Looking at my shelf, I have the following titles altogether:

Inversions
Feersum Enjinn
Look To Windward
Use Of Weapons
The Player Of Games
Excession
Against A Dark Background
The State Of The Art
Consider Phlebas

I really must get around to reading these - most were as Christmas presents to me from wifey!

I've got so many books waiting to be read.  So little time to read them.  Sigh.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Ron on April 06, 2003, 06:35:58 AM
QuoteI've got so many books waiting to be read.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Chris Quartly on April 28, 2003, 22:45:34 PM
I'm hoping to borrow a copy of the Wasp Factory very soon.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on April 29, 2003, 20:53:55 PM
I'd lend it to you CQ but my copy has been in someone else's house for about 15 years. >:(

TWF is a cracker of a book if you're not too easily offended.

But if you are easily offended I wouldn't recommend many of them. Failing TWF try the Bridge, its an awesome story which gave a strange introduction to the sci-fi side of His writing. :)

Happy Trails

Jon M

Let me know what you yhink though!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Chris Quartly on April 29, 2003, 21:14:49 PM
I loved "American Psycho" (Bret Easton Ellis) so that should give an indication of my tolerance levels  ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Slim on April 30, 2003, 02:16:04 AM
QuoteI'm hoping to borrow a copy of the Wasp Factory very soon.

Fantastic book, the first Iain Banks I read.  Everyone should read it at least once.

Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on April 30, 2003, 22:34:52 PM
Hear hear!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: yyzgit on April 30, 2003, 22:52:17 PM
Hi All.

TWF - could never look at sand dunes the same again :P

Just reading WHIT and the moment, very cool.

On a completely different tack has anyone read any Michael Marshall Smith.  If not, check him out, very cool.  Early work is like Hitchikers meets Bladerunner (Only Forward, Spares) more recent stuff is very bizarre (The Straw Men, One of Us) ;D ;D

Well Worth checking out.

Later

Simon.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on May 01, 2003, 05:36:01 AM
Hi yyzgit,

Glad to hear youre a IB/IMB fan. So was the year 2000 a leap year or not...and why? ::)

Thats about all I got out of Whit I'm afraid, which incidentally is a typo, the typist missing the "S" key.

Sorry. lmao

I actually liked it while I was reading it.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: yyzgit on May 01, 2003, 15:54:34 PM
Hi Jon M,

Hmm not got to the 2000 leap year descision yet - nearly there though and so far I think it's OK.

Later

Simon. ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on May 02, 2003, 16:58:35 PM
Hi again Simon,

Sorry to drag you away from the book but we all KNOW that the year 2000 WAS a leap year, that one's given...

Why was the year 2000 a leap year?

Obviously one yyzgit will get this eventually but I'll give a frrrreeebieee Vancouver Circumstances Silver to the first answer

Cheers all you interested d00ds

Jon M
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Russell on July 09, 2003, 23:41:56 PM
I liked, ' Espedaire Street', a hell of alot.
I must get around to reading more of his fine works.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Slim on July 10, 2003, 01:10:45 AM
Quote
Why was the year 2000 a leap year?

Because 2000 is divisble by 4?
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Ron on July 10, 2003, 02:42:59 AM
Bought the Dutch translation of The Business a couple of weeks ago.
The Wasp factory is not available in a Dutch translation anymore, unfortunately.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Ashley_Davidson on October 07, 2003, 20:45:34 PM
Calling all Iain Banks fans, we look set to review one of his books this month, so please feel free to join in too!

Look under the talking bollocks VII section
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Reg on October 07, 2003, 22:48:04 PM
Quote

Because 2000 is divisble by 4?
Not quite that simple Slim.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Slim on October 07, 2003, 23:27:46 PM
QuoteI know the above, cos I spent a couple of years coding this crap in various places and had to find out for sure.

Oddly, I had to code this myself a few years back, in C - just found the function I wrote:

int isleapyr(int yr) {
   return (yr % 4 == 0) ;
   /* or .. will work in 2100:  return ((yr % 4 == 0) && (yr % 100) || (yr % 400 == 0)) */
}

I had forgotten the exact rule, but it looks like I coded it to work up to 2099 only (the year argument would always be the present year), but left a comment in the code so it could be modified to work correctly in 2100 (and beyond!) if necessary!


Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Jon M on October 08, 2003, 05:31:32 AM
It certainly does Reg, I ought to have set a reminder here, Its a while since I was in this area of the site...No excuses..its in the post sir! ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on August 21, 2006, 00:33:27 AM
For those that are interested a new IB book heading our way soonish, titled

"The Steep Approach to Garbadale".


Key Editorial Points:

Dark family secrets and a passionate love affair: Iain Banks' best novel since THE CROW ROAD.

Book Information:

Dark family secrets, a long-lost love affair and a multi-million pound gaming business lie at the heart of Iain Banks' fabulous new novel .

The Wopuld family have built their fortune on a board game called EMPIRE. It has transferred remarkably well to the computer generation and now the American Spraint corportation want to buy them out. Alban, who has been evading the family tentacles for the last few years, thinks the yanks should be treated with suspicion - but he also has other things on his mind. What was it that drove his mother to take her own life? And has he ever really got over Sophie, the girl he had a teenage love affair with and who will be present at the forthcoming family gathering in their highland castle?

A book of great warmth, humanity and ingenuity, MATTER is Iain Banks' finest novel since THE CROW ROAD.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on August 21, 2006, 17:49:36 PM
QuoteFor those that are interested a new IB book heading our way soonish, titled

"The Steep Approach to Garbadale".


Key Editorial Points:

Dark family secrets and a passionate love affair: Iain Banks' best novel since THE CROW ROAD.

Book Information:

Dark family secrets, a long-lost love affair and a multi-million pound gaming business lie at the heart of Iain Banks' fabulous new novel .

The Wopuld family have built their fortune on a board game called EMPIRE. It has transferred remarkably well to the computer generation and now the American Spraint corportation want to buy them out. Alban, who has been evading the family tentacles for the last few years, thinks the yanks should be treated with suspicion - but he also has other things on his mind. What was it that drove his mother to take her own life? And has he ever really got over Sophie, the girl he had a teenage love affair with and who will be present at the forthcoming family gathering in their highland castle?

A book of great warmth, humanity and ingenuity, MATTER is Iain Banks' finest novel since THE CROW ROAD.


He has changed the title. It was going to be called "Matter".

BTW - there was another Iain Banks thread on way down on page 6.
http://www.t-n-m-s.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1089387263/41#41

Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on November 19, 2006, 22:53:03 PM

Extract from the new book here http://www.iainbanks.net/garbadale.htm
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Moving_Pict on November 26, 2006, 01:50:33 AM
I've always thought that "The Wasp Factory" was the ultimate Rush fan's book. If Neil Peart had written it we'd have started our own religion by now.  
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on November 26, 2006, 10:03:44 AM
QuoteI've always thought that "The Wasp Factory" was the ultimate Rush fan's book. If Neil Peart had written it we'd have started our own religion by now.  

What are you trying so say about Rush fans Mr Pict  ?   ::)

[spoiler]
Are we all suppressing our inner woman, murdering our relatives and torturing animals   ;)
[/spoiler]


But you might be right  :o
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Moving_Pict on November 26, 2006, 21:43:33 PM
Quote

What are you trying so say about Rush fans Mr Pict
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: TerrBerr on November 26, 2006, 22:13:41 PM
Quote

Thankfully I'm wrong. Each Sunday I realise this is becoming more common as I peruse my Saturday night temporary keyboard insanity. I think what I mean (and I'm no longer sure) is that Rush music is not completely normal. Most folk shy away and yet their fans are attracted to it in an addictive, compulsive way. And not in a trying just to be contrary way either. If you get it you really get it and it's under your skin forever. A sound that restructures your DNA. Is that a weird enough explanation? I think I am back on thread again. The Wasp Factory is like that. It strikes you somewhere that you will always remember. If you get it!

I bought this book many years ago but never read it. I think I will try it now on the strength of your somewhat rambling recommendation...


Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Moving_Pict on November 26, 2006, 22:42:28 PM
Quote

I bought this book many years ago but never read it. I think I will try it now on the strength of your somewhat rambling recommendation...



Are all of my replies to you going to begin with "How dare you"? I have never rambled in my life. I am succinct always. I could say more but that would just open the door to spurious conjecture. OK I do ramble. But in a good way. ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on February 12, 2007, 22:22:56 PM
QuoteMy Rush following seems to have run side by side with the releases of his books.


My original quote has come to fruition !!!  :o :o :o :o ;D


http://www.amazon.co.uk/Steep-Approach-Garbadale-Iain-Banks/dp/0316731056/sr=8-1/qid=1171315264/ref=pd_ka_1/203-4241257-5957528?ie=UTF8&s=books
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Phil on February 15, 2007, 20:03:14 PM
Without looking at Amazon, has he written a book called The Algebreist?
I've read that.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on February 15, 2007, 21:43:22 PM
QuoteWithout looking at Amazon, has he written a book called The Algebreist?
I've read that.


Doesn't it have his name on the cover ?  :-?

(Yes - he did write The Algebraist)
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Phil on February 15, 2007, 22:09:03 PM
Quote


Doesn't it have his name on the cover ?
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on February 24, 2007, 08:41:46 AM

TSATG arrived today complete with Rush themed cover. Hope it's good.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: 34Poolboy on January 12, 2008, 13:32:36 PM
I was on holiday in Scotland a couple of years ago and picked up Dead Air and The Crow Road in a second hand bookshop. I started Dead Air but found the characters offputting so I put it back on the shelf. I`ve recently started The Crow Road and despite it`s fragmented style it makes very easy reading. I`m enjoying it so far and hope to get hold of a copy of The Wasp Factory thereafter.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on January 12, 2008, 17:29:29 PM
QuoteI was on holiday in Scotland a couple of years ago and picked up Dead Air and The Crow Road in a second hand bookshop. I started Dead Air but found the characters offputting so I put it back on the shelf. I`ve recently started The Crow Road and despite it`s fragmented style it makes very easy reading. I`m enjoying it so far and hope to get hold of a copy of The Wasp Factory thereafter.


The Crow Road has the best opening line ever.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on January 12, 2008, 22:01:56 PM
Quote
Hope it's good.

It wasn't.  :(
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Blastzone on April 27, 2008, 00:16:12 AM
Just dipped in to my first reading of Ian Banks' Wasp Factory.
The first chapter"The Sacrifice Poles" is one of the weirdest openings ive ever read in a book.
Looking forward to the rest...
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Lyth on April 27, 2008, 08:30:52 AM
 :)

Just seen this, never realised that there was a thread.

I've read all of his (non sci-fi) books except 'The Steep Approach To Garbadale', which came out last year.

I must get round to buying it. It's supposed to be along similar lines to the excelent 'The Crow Road'.

They're all great books but I paricularly like 'The Bridge', 'Canal Dreams' and 'Dead Air'.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on April 27, 2008, 11:38:04 AM
QuoteJust dipped in to my first reading of Ian Banks' Wasp Factory.
The first chapter"The Sacrifice Poles" is one of the weirdest openings ive ever read in a book.
Looking forward to the rest...

Great book - great twist at the end. DON'T READ AHEAD
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on April 27, 2008, 11:40:43 AM
Quote:)

Just seen this, never realised that there was a thread.

I've read all of his (non sci-fi) books except 'The Steep Approach To Garbadale', which came out last year.

I must get round to buying it. It's supposed to be along similar lines to the excelent 'The Crow Road'.


Don't get your hopes up. The comparisons are because it's a family saga and it's an OK read if a little heavy-handed in its anti-American imperialism, but not in the same class as Crow Road
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Blastzone on May 03, 2008, 01:59:48 AM
Now read chapters 2 through to 5 ..... getting mentaler(is that a word?)
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: McVey on May 03, 2008, 03:20:03 AM
QuoteNow read chapters 2 through to 5 ..... getting mentaler(is that a word?)

Yes, it is a word. As are most words + er based around the root of the verb / noun /adjective in modern speech (which is (are) heavily criticised. Adding the incremental superior tense is reached more comfortably by use of the word more. More mental in this case.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Blastzone on May 03, 2008, 12:06:21 PM
Quote

Yes, it is a word. As are most words + er based around the root of the verb / noun /adjective in modern speech (which is (are) heavily criticised. Adding the incremental superior tense is reached more comfortably by use of the word more. More mental in this case.
thanks ;) ;D
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on May 04, 2008, 21:17:22 PM
I see that there is a version of The Wasp Factory touring as a play at the moment. I may go see it at the Traverse in Edinburgh in June.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Blastzone on May 12, 2008, 23:48:07 PM
Quote

Great book - great twist at the end. DON'T READ AHEAD
Christ , that was one weird book ::)
However, very enjoyable..... where should i go next with Mr Banks?
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on May 13, 2008, 00:11:23 AM
His best book is Crow Road (IMO). Best first line ever. How can you not want to read a book that starts with the sentence "It was the day my grandmother exploded" ?  ;D

Also - Espedair Street about a reclusive rock star from Paisley who lives in an old church in Glasgow is superb.

Both of those are lighter in tone than The Wasp Factory.

Once you've got through them you are ready to handle The Bridge  ;) which is much darker (than Crow Road and Espedair Street). The Bridge is awesome but weirder than a very weird thing which just won the weirdo of the year award.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Blastzone on May 13, 2008, 12:27:19 PM
QuoteHis best book is Crow Road (IMO). Best first line ever. How can you not want to read a book that starts with the sentence "It was the day my grandmother exploded"?
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on May 13, 2008, 21:45:33 PM
BaldiePete speaks the truth in his selection. All great works by Banks, i would add Complicity as being another good one. To me all the other fiction he has written just doesn't meet those previous heights.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on May 13, 2008, 23:30:15 PM
QuoteBaldiePete speaks the truth in his selection. All great works by Banks, i would add Complicity as being another good one. To me all the other fiction he has written just doesn't meet those previous heights.

Indeed. Complicity was his last great book.

BTW - assuming you have read The Bridge,
[spoiler]
did you know that it has a happy ending, but it happens in Complicity ?  :o
[/spoiler]
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Bez on May 14, 2008, 09:19:55 AM
QuoteBaldiePete speaks the truth in his selection. All great works by Banks, i would add Complicity as being another good one. To me all the other fiction he has written just doesn't meet those previous heights.

Complicity for me as well....I'd avoid Song of Stone, the Business and Canal  Dreams.....
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Lyth on May 14, 2008, 18:58:06 PM
Quote
Once you've got through them you are ready to handle The Bridge
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: kiddgloves on June 12, 2008, 20:26:02 PM
Just bought a cheap copy of 'The Wasp Factory' by default. I was actually looking for Ian Rankin books at the time, then I remembered the positive comments on here...

I always lose the plot in second hand bookshops. My mind seems to go blank when I walk through the door  :P
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: andyhaines on June 12, 2008, 21:31:17 PM
QuoteJust bought a cheap copy of 'The Wasp Factory' by default. I was actually looking for Ian Rankin books at the time, then I remembered the positive comments on here...

I always lose the plot in second hand bookshops. My mind seems to go blank when I walk through the door
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on June 12, 2008, 23:23:21 PM
Quote
Enjoy it mate...a weird and wonderful tale. :)

Indeed. Do you get many Standard or Higher graders who want to write about it ? I get the impression it's the sort of book that some kids will always want to write about to show that they don't just read all that boring school stuff.

Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: andyhaines on June 12, 2008, 23:35:00 PM
Quote

Indeed. Do you get many Standard or Higher graders who want to write about it? I get the impression it's the sort of book that some kids will always want to write about to show that they don't just read all that boring school stuff.

Yep. I recommend it to a lot of Higher pupils for their Personal Study...after reading it, they come back amazed that a "grown-up" would read and enjoy such stuff. ::) ;D


..Oh, the innocence of youth..
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: fr0g on June 16, 2008, 01:25:39 AM
LO all. Great book that - good twist. My 17 year old read it recently and yes, thought why would a grown up read that!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: kiddgloves on June 17, 2008, 20:24:48 PM
Well I thoroughly enjoyed 'The Wasp Factory'. I'll keep a look out for 'Crow Road' next.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: fr0g on June 18, 2008, 19:55:56 PM
Do 'Espedair Street' next -  :)
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: kiddgloves on June 20, 2008, 19:52:44 PM
QuoteDo 'Espedair Street' next -  :)

Okay. I'll see if I can find it.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: andyhaines on July 19, 2008, 11:46:31 AM
Anyone read Matter yet? Thoughts...
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on July 19, 2008, 13:00:03 PM
QuoteAnyone read Matter yet? Thoughts...

Yes - typical late period Banks. Lots of ideas but not very well executed. He often puts stuff in because just he is very imaginative and likes to stuff the story with these ideas but they don't add anything much to the story. As a result, it's far longer than can be justified by the plot. If he could have knocked at least a hundred or so pages off it would have helped a lot.

If you are already a fan, it is worth reading. It's still better than his last couple of 'M' books.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on July 20, 2008, 00:01:27 AM
It's a real shame but to me Bank's appears to have had his time.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Bez on January 06, 2013, 00:36:43 AM
Has anyone caught up with Banks recently....my last book was the Steep Approach to Garbadale - which didn't really seem to go anywhere....I see that he's written a couple since then....any good ?
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on January 06, 2013, 01:24:57 AM
Quote from: Bez on January 06, 2013, 00:36:43 AM
Has anyone caught up with Banks recently....my last book was the Steep Approach to Garbadale - which didn't really seem to go anywhere....I see that he's written a couple since then....any good ?

Matter - dull
Transition - pretty decent. It's sort of a cross between a mainstream Iain Banks book and a SF Iain M Banks book. Good pay-off at the end.
Surface Detail - also OK but like most of his SF books for quite some time it's too long. If you are a long term Iain M Banks fan the very last word in the book is worth reading the preceding 600 pages for.
Stonemouth - It's OK but really it's an attempt to re-create the feel of The Crow Road.  He doesn't succeed.
The Hydrogen Sonata - for Culture fanbois.

To me, he hasn't written any really good SF since Inversions, or "mainstream" since Complicity.

Old Banks Good, New Banks Meh

Raw Spirit, the book he wrote about touring Scotland visiting whisky distilleries is good fun.

Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on January 06, 2013, 15:13:51 PM
Yep , lost me after Complicity.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Bez on January 11, 2013, 21:41:02 PM
Quote from: BaldiePete on January 06, 2013, 01:24:57 AM
Matter - dull
Transition - pretty decent. It's sort of a cross between a mainstream Iain Banks book and a SF Iain M Banks book. Good pay-off at the end.
Surface Detail - also OK but like most of his SF books for quite some time it's too long. If you are a long term Iain M Banks fan the very last word in the book is worth reading the preceding 600 pages for.
Stonemouth - It's OK but really it's an attempt to re-create the feel of The Crow Road.  He doesn't succeed.
The Hydrogen Sonata - for Culture fanbois.

To me, he hasn't written any really good SF since Inversions, or "mainstream" since Complicity.

Old Banks Good, New Banks Meh

Raw Spirit, the book he wrote about touring Scotland visiting whisky distilleries is good fun.

Cheers Pete

I never really "got" the SF books...I think I gave up after the 3rd one (Use of Weapons or the Player of Games ?)

I'll check out the "mainstream" additions
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on January 12, 2013, 00:01:36 AM
Quote from: Bez on January 11, 2013, 21:41:02 PM
Cheers Pete

I never really "got" the SF books...I think I gave up after the 3rd one (Use of Weapons or the Player of Games ?)

I'll check out the "mainstream" additions

Use of Weapons is the third one and is probably my favourite of the SF books and in my top 3 of all his books.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Mike on January 13, 2013, 22:58:38 PM
Espedair Street was my last and that was, umm, 20-21 years ago. I enjoyed that somewhat I think - obviously not enough that I can remember the plot clearly - about a band I think? I also read one or two of his 'M' sci-fi books and haven't bothered again - can't remember a word of them. Certainly can't compare to the greats of the genre.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Nick on April 03, 2013, 12:39:09 PM
Sad news today http://www.scotsman.com/lifestyle/books/features/iain-banks-i-have-cancer-1-2874469
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Andrew_Haldane on April 03, 2013, 12:48:11 PM
Quote from: Nick on April 03, 2013, 12:39:09 PM
Sad news today http://www.scotsman.com/lifestyle/books/features/iain-banks-i-have-cancer-1-2874469


:(  Months left

>:( fecking cancer again!
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Neph on April 03, 2013, 14:16:27 PM
My wife told me about this earlier, sad news indeed. He always came across as a decent kind of guy.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on April 03, 2013, 15:23:09 PM
 Bugger  :( :( :'(

Possibly my favourite author, I've been a fan since the 1980's and his early work from The Wasp Factory through to Complicity was brilliant (ok, Canal Dreams was pish). It dropped off pretty sharply from the mid 90's but we all know artists who have got worse as they got older ;). I've been to a few of his book readings were always entertaining and I got to ask him a question once at a BBC Book Show recording. If you hung around in the Omar Khayamm Indian restaurant opposite Haymarket railway station in Edinburgh you were sure to see him, he was in there regularly.

Very sad.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: captainkurtz on April 03, 2013, 21:40:36 PM
Awful news.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: JonL on April 04, 2013, 18:04:02 PM
The thought of being diagnosed with cancer terrifies me.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Andrew_Haldane on April 04, 2013, 19:27:44 PM
I fecking hate cancer!  >:( >:( >:(
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: dwtty on April 05, 2013, 09:38:56 AM
They were discussing his propsal to his partner yesterday on Radio 2. Sad news. Read a lit of his stuff years ago but got a bit repetitive.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Bez on April 05, 2013, 10:13:41 AM
Quote from: dwtty on April 05, 2013, 09:38:56 AM
Read a lit of his stuff years ago but got a bit repetitive.

Meandering maybe, but never repetitive... ;)
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: dwtty on April 06, 2013, 22:10:34 PM
Funny enough popped down to Mumbles yesterday and bought 'The Algebrist' in a book fair in the Methodist Chapel. Cost me 50p so worth a go.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: andyhaines on April 14, 2013, 19:48:33 PM
Quote from: Bisto on April 04, 2013, 19:27:44 PM
I fecking hate cancer!  >:( >:( >:(
I know. Me mum has been battling with it for nearly 5 years now.  :(

I've read most of Banks' books (as Iain, and Iain M), and have just started Stonemouth. Quite amusing in places.  :)
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Slim on June 09, 2013, 17:13:06 PM
Just read that he's died. Damn, that was quick. What a shame.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on June 09, 2013, 18:20:48 PM
That's him away the Crow Road now  : :( :'(
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Neph on June 09, 2013, 18:44:01 PM
Very quick it would seem. At least the old cliche of "at least he didn't suffer" seems to be appropriate here.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: karl on June 09, 2013, 18:53:56 PM
Sad News.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: NeilP on June 09, 2013, 19:12:34 PM
Sad to hear that
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: andyhaines on June 09, 2013, 22:33:45 PM
Farewell to a wonderful mind. Xxx
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Straight Shooter on June 10, 2013, 12:10:51 PM
Always enjoyed him being interviewed; seemed a sound bloke.  :(

This Wednesday 9pm (?), BBC2 Scotland are scheduled to show him recently interviewed by Kirsty Wark, following his 'announcement'.
If they've any sense, the whole network should now show it.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on June 14, 2013, 17:46:37 PM
At The Who gig in Glasgow on Wednesday, Pete Townsend dedicated Behind Blue Eyes to Iain Banks.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Bez on June 15, 2013, 07:31:31 AM
There's a tribute prog on the tv early next week....around 10PM (ish) maybe bbc2....I'll try and check
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Andrew_Haldane on June 15, 2013, 09:12:46 AM
Ah feck it! :(
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on June 15, 2013, 09:38:40 AM
Quote from: Bez on June 15, 2013, 07:31:31 AM
There's a tribute prog on the tv early next week....around 10PM (ish) maybe bbc2....I'll try and check

It was shown in Scotland last Wednesday and is already on iPlayer. Just checked the listings and you are getting an edited half hour version of the one hour original. The full version is here (for another 4 days).

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/bigscreen/tv/episode/b02xf70k/
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Andrew_Haldane on June 15, 2013, 09:53:54 AM
Cheers Pete
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: dom on June 15, 2013, 10:19:43 AM
Iain Banks: the final interview

http://gu.com/p/3ghg9

This was done after the announcement that he was dying. Weird that he came up with the idea for what would be his final book before he knew
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: captainkurtz on June 24, 2013, 18:23:29 PM
Sis in law was an editor in London last decade...think she worked on The Business (she gave me a signed proof).

She wrote to him after the news broke thanking him for treating her so well when she was a junior when so many of his peers wouldnt even have acknowledged her......he wrote back to her a letter of thanks and continued words of encouragement.  Classy.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: BaldiePete on July 10, 2013, 22:32:16 PM
 A repeat of the TV adaptation of The Crow Road is starting at 10-30 tonight on BBC4.
Title: Re: Iain Banks
Post by: Blastzone on July 11, 2013, 20:16:07 PM
Quote from: BaldiePete on July 10, 2013, 22:32:16 PM
A repeat of the TV adaptation of The Crow Road is starting at 10-30 tonight on BBC4.

Thanks Pete ...recording the 4 parts