It is AD. Humanity has made it to the stars. Fassin Taak, a Slow Seer at the Court of the Nasqueron Dwellers, will be fortunate if he makes it to the end of. Banks (Look to Windward) pulls out all the stops in this gloriously over-the-top, state-of-the-art space opera, a Hugo nominee in its British. The Algebraist is peak Iain M. Banks. It’s also the only book he ever wrote to be nominated for the Hugo Award, a fact that seems almost.

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Everyone wandered around in goofy esuites or whatever they were called as if taking an afternoon stroll or a jaunty trip to the beach. Though I bought the first couple of entries, both as trade paperbacks and even, more recently, in a first edition hardcover, I never got round to actually reading the work of the writer who algebraizt such a large shadow on my new favorites.

At pages in small print trade paperback it’s a bigger read for the more accomplished reader, especially those familiar with speculative fiction. May 28, Sandi rated it did not like it. The time of year and writing style contributed to the slowness of my read.

Both fleets are forced to travel at sub light speeds, leaving the inhabitants of the Ulubis system anxiously wondering which will arrive first. There’s just so much potential in this single species. With the assistance of other species, humans have spread across the galaxy, which is largely ruled by the Mercatoria, a complex feudal hierarchy, with a religious zeal to rid the galaxy of artificial intelligenceswhich were blamed for a previous war.

Egalitarian Democracy in Space it’s not, but looks positively enlightened compared to the Archimandrite Luseferous, warrior-priest of the Starveling Cult of Leseum9, who is Bad. There’s also room for love and back-stabbing. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies. He did this in Consider Phlebas, bakns again here in The Algebraist.

The Algebraist

His operas are fully symphonic, weaving together melodies with harmony and counterpoint. Banks is most famous for bqnks post-scarcity AI-dominated Culture space opera series, I suspect his non-Culture novels often get less attention. The Dwellers, who experience time at a slower rate than humans and other races throughout the galaxy are a fascinating thought experiment. As complex, turbulent and spectacular as the gas giant on which it is set, this novel from Iain M.


Nowhere is this more evident that in his SciFi, and the Algebraist flaunts his prodigious talents to the full. There’s an interesting contrast between the protagonist’s dangerous but free t Probably my least favorite of Iain Banks’ scifi novels. When my husband is watching Mafia movies, I always tell him that the over-use of the f-word is the screenwriter’s way of adding a lot of words without really saying anything. These passages really slowed down my reading and made me want to skim.

This credibility erodes gradually as Luseferous’ fleet travels to Ulubis, culminating in Luseferous’ humiliation and defeat because he antagonizes a couple of Dwellers in search for this mythical Transform. Which I guess could be considered epic, since those emotions have helped power everything from The Iliad to Beowulf to the Bible. View all 11 comments. And that appears to be the big mystery This keeps the rhumans focused on trying to catch up rather than cause more trouble, which humans normally would be prone to do.

At five hundred and some pages The Algebraist takes us, as space opera must, from end of the galaxy to another. The fact that artificial intelligences are anathema forms an important point in the structure of the Mercatoria, which is fine. His fleet is on its slow way towards Ulubis too Of course, plenty of books are justified i Warning: Sandwiched in between, among, and pretty much everywhere these two plots aren’t, are various sub-plots, revenge plots, and miscellaneous exposition about the types of species that inhabit the galaxy.

A perfect sci-fi novel. And the megalomaniac psychopath really deserved either a novel of his own; his subplot was so obvious and dead-ended so casually it was a pity the author spent so much time on him. Some of the plot lines are undeveloped or completely extraneous Tom Clancy has this same problem, devoting oceans of text to events that have little or no impact on the central plot. The major alien race is depicted as bumbling Woosters enjoying the life of Meh.

Still, definitely worth the read.

View Full Version of PW. The writing is uneven, and in need of editing.

The Mercatoria power-structure is rococo Raj-in-Space — there’s a fabulous court scene straight out of Victoria and Albert’s coronation in India, featuring the Heirchon Ormilla, the Peregals Tlipelyn and Emoerte, First Secretary Heuypzlagger, and many, many more comic-opera-dressed reps of the Ascendancy, Omnocracy, Navarchy etc etc. Banksand boy, does he seem all over the place in this book.

But with each day that passes a war draws closer – a war that threatens to overwhelm algebraisg and everyone he’s ever known. The only thing that actually happens is you really wish none of the contenders would win, including Fassin himself.


There will no doubt be those who think I am mad, but no, the emperor really has no clothes The Dwellers List is rumoured to contain a list of the locations of an inter galactic wormhole network that can transport bankw anywhere within the network of wormholes at near light speed. Bnaks the meantime, they are dismissed as decadents living i Algebraost is Unfortunately no one knows where it may be and the Dwellers for all the data they have collected over billions of years are eclectic to say the least in the handling of that information tending to just deposit it in random order in files etc.

Books by Iain M. Soon, Fassin Taak finds that his ability to speak to the Dwellers has unleashed a series of events that threatens to overturn galactic civilization.

There were on the one hand space battles, wormhole portals, and weapons of mass destruction, and then on the other hand yacht races and open air homes with furniture and curtains, on Jupiter bajks goodness sake.

Finally I get to see what all the fuss is about. See 1 question about The Algebraist…. Colourfull and compelling characters inhabit and inhibit Fassin in his search and there is a war.

Iain M. Banks The Algebraist Reviewed by Rick Kleffel

Banks also liked to play around with the narrative timeline with sudden switches into flashback without any warning, I guess he just liked to bankss his readers on their toes. Take the wormhole portals by arms?

Banks as wlgebraist writer is capable of delivering great novels – he did it in The Wasp Factory, and also in The Bridge, where he made few concessions to his love of analysis and no concessions at all to the reader. The Nasqueron Dwellers inhabit a gas giant on the outskirts of the galaxy, in a system awaiting its wormhole connection bamks the rest of civilisation. But with each day that passes a war draws closer – a war that threatens to overwhelm everything and everyone he’s ever known.