Homer's Travels: Book: Iain M. Banks' "Matter"

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Book: Iain M. Banks' "Matter"

My last read before I head out on vacation was Iain M. Bank's "Matter", another of his Culture books.  Banks weaves a complex story of intrigue which held my attention.  I read the 570 page book in less than two weeks, which, for me, is a good reading pace.

The story follows a prince from a shellworld (an ancient, artificial, multi-layered world) whose father, the king, was assassinated.  He leaves his steam-level technology to venture out into the hyper-advanced world of the Culture in search of his sister who joined the Culture years before.  We see the advanced from the perspective of the less advanced as he runs for his life and searches for help.

In the end we find that the intrigue on the primitive world is just one small piece of a much larger conspiracy among the advanced and the not so advanced.  How jealousy, lost legacies, and a society's need to be great once again, blinds them to the dangers they inadvertently release.

I liked the book.  The climax, like other of Banks' works, comes very close to the end of the book - in this case the last page of the book.  While it felt very abrupt, it worked.  It's another good Culture book.

P.S. It took the Library seven and a half weeks to get this book.  I may have to look at other options for getting books to read.

1 comment:

  1. Definitely sounds interesting, i'll have see if I have any of the author's books in my digital collection. I've downloaded a couple million books from various torrents off the net, Sci-fi, fantasy, mystery and romance for light reading, and a ton of college text books for my various personal studies.