(SPOILERS). Just finished reading UOW and just wanted to post that this was a great discussion thread and a stellar review from Abigail. Reminds me of Cormac McCarthy, and I think the attempt at ambiguity detracts from conclusion. After reading this thread, though, I feel like I'm coming around to it, in an odd way.

This was his psychological turning point, though the pressure had been building as evidenced during his murderous/suicidal thoughts on the sleeper ship. Dead?" If so - and that's presumably the reason they recruited him, as someone who could be bent to their will - why go along with his false identity? Found it very disturbing in that you come to like the Zak/El characater, although he is clearly flawed. the severe overuse of pronouns. is one of the best lines in the book. Chemical and biological weapons. Lettered: 26 leatherbound copies, signed by Ken MacLeod, housed in a custom traycase, Limited: 400 numbered cloth bound copies signed by Ken MacLeod. Ferociously intelligent, both witty and horrific, USE OF WEAPONS is a masterpiece of science fiction. Sma, horrified and disgusted at having worked so closely with E/Z for so long, goes and finds a replacement from a war somewhere who isn't a horribly broken sociopathic mass murderer. I wish I hadn't read this. These include nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, and biological weapons.

In "Use of Weapons," Iain M. Banks seeks to make a different point. Weapons. I just finished UoW this morning and I have to admit that I saw a lot of things differently than Abigail. Elethionmel was the only man the great Culture Minds failed to understand because he was an unflattering reflection of the culture, a side they did not want to focus on too much. Epilogue.

Jeepers i can't get it that nobody else is getting this: Also, the bit about the drone and the two insects hints at this reading. In that scene the narrator specifically calls Zakalwe by name, something it is scrupulous to avoid in portions of the book narrated from Elethiomel's perspective. When I re-read the book, the interpretation of 'oh, Zakalwe is the bomb she is talking about' leapt out at me; this is a story about how anything can be a weapon if you work hard enough, up to and including your beloved sister's corpse; and to the cynical Minds of SC, this fucked-up soldier they found makes a pretty good weapon too. And we swear to God, if anyone comes in here and starts spouting off QAnon bullshit about COVID-19 or literally anything else, you are going to get permabanned so thoroughly that your grandchildren won't be allowed to post here. Zakalwe’s quest is told in straightforward chronological order. First published in 1990, Use of Weapons was the third novel in the series, and it remains one of Banks’s most astonishing – and complex – accomplishments. Even choosing to believe D was already dead, I still think the twist cheapened the plot and ruined what was otherwise shaping up to be a masterpiece of a novel. I cannot accept going from the person who made that chair to the guilt-ridden man we've followed throughout the novel. There's also a conversation somewhere in the book where the literal phrase "use of weapons" is used while explaining how anything can be leveraged as a weapon. Weapons and epilogue (obvious spoilers) User Info: Aipher. Read More ». it just murdered them. Further complica… Certainty when striking the enemy head.

He s a weapon, and the oh-so-good-and-pure Culture is not above employing a man like him if they think its for the greater good. I'm not sure of what to think of it myself, but whether he did or not, it seems like it would detract from the story a bit.

I've just finished reading the book, for the first time. Never got any back. This book is the epitome of the best kind of science fiction, which is always about us in the here-and-now, rather than "them" in the there-and-then. Thanks. The chair business can be connected with the whole decapitation bit with the cranky old space shuttle.

Science Fiction, Fantasy, Alt. Tapping into it enables a society without scarcity and therefore without toil, money, classes, social domination, or significant coercion. It is the clear product of a master storyteller who died too soon, leaving a vast, indelible impression behind. A musing that has a spoiler for Death's End (the third book of The Three Body Problem), so careful clicking if you haven't read that one: Of Cheradenine and Elethiomel, only one of them would answer the interview question with a 'Yes' and deal with the consequences (albeit with remorse). Tag: epilogue Sarah Perry – Every Cradle is a Grave. Just finished the book without knowing the twist, and during the reveal Banks writes: This comment has been removed by the author. I didn't really notice that until the third time I read it, when I realized that Banks never, ever, ever uses the authorial voice to give the man who called himself Zakalwe a name, and was astounded at that little trick. Good to see I'm not the only one adding comments way after the original post. How many people can look at a skeleton and go 'yup, that's my sibling'?)". i suggest you reread it. Leisure and abundance! History, Postmodern Lit., and more are all welcome here. Oh also here is a thing I noticed on a re-read: Does the name 'Diziet' sound like any English words? It is still a plodding read though, while I enjoy them a lot, none of these novels are what I would call page turners. I did not see the twist coming and really wanted someone to talk to about this novel in the context of The Culture. This is backed up by his use of the nuke at the end.) ===========================================================, This isn't the first time I've heard this by the way. Read Diziet Sma's poem, and think of its last line: 'The bomb only lives when it is falling'. Faster-than-light travel! Working out the conditions for the existence of a society that could satisfy these modest desires for every conscious being within its domain required an entire imaginary physics and cosmology. He had agents out looking for her. In conversation, Banks called it the Cosmic Onion theory, an explication of which usually ended with an airy wave of the hand and a blithe “…but of course you have to think of it in seven dimensions.” Our expanding universe is, in higher dimensions, an expanding shell, with slightly older and younger universes as concentric shells outside and inside, which themselves…and so on, ad infinitum. Some of them were intentional, and I understand why, but some of them would be severe deductions in a graded essay. In “Star Trek”, the prime directive — an intergalactic pact that prohibits those in Starfleet from interfering with the myriad civilizations they encounter — reflects America’s processing of the Vietnam War: People were watching what was transpiring, saying "My God, what have we done?". 4. Can someone explain to me the relation between the Prologue (with old man Cullis) and the rest of the book? He continues on, serving the culture, using and being used, and for what he's done. It’s his story, from the end to the beginning and back. Note: $6000 is the operating, maintenance and upgrade budget.

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