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Use of Weapons by Iain M. Banks

Use of Weapons (original 1990; edition 2008)

by Iain M. Banks

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3,578741,474 ()1 / 134
Title:Use of Weapons
Authors:Iain M. Banks
Info:Orbit (2008), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 512 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Use of Weapons by Iain M. Banks (1990)

  1. 40
    Gridlinked by Neal Asher (goodiegoodie)
  2. 62
    Chasm City by Alastair Reynolds (EatSleepChuck)
  3. 30
    Hard to be a god by Arkadi Strugatski (prezzey)
    prezzey: Banks seems to have been inspired by the Strugatskys' concept of Progressors. Similar theme, different perspective (Western vs Eastern bloc) - if you liked one, you will probably be interested in the other.
  4. 31
    The Skinner by Neal Asher (goodiegoodie)
  5. 20
    Hyperion by Dan Simmons (TarsolyGer)
  6. 00
    A Deepness in the Sky by Vernor Vinge (TarsolyGer)

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English (71)  Italian (2)  French (1)  All languages (74)
Showing 1-5 of 71 (next | show all)
A very accessible Culture novel and a quick read. Follow Zakalwe on his journey of salvation, the story is both interesting and reads a little less sci-fi than other Culture novels. The is a story about a man who is seeking redemption.

The story jumps over different time periods and gives you just enough hints to figure out the ending, without beating you over the head with it. ( )
  fabooj | Feb 3, 2015 |
Not as good as Consider Phlebas which I had read previously. The story did not really have any momentum until the final 100 pages, and the flashbacks didn't really work for me as they lacked a narrative thread, each being a separate episode from Zakalwe's life. The "revelation" in the final flashback was interesting but was left until the last few pages and so not really developed. ( )
  rlangston | Jan 27, 2015 |
The protagonist of "Use of Weapons" seems reasonably nice, except that he's a violent sociopath. The book's storyline jumps back and forth through time so much that I don't have any sense of growth or change in the protagonist. At times he is pretentious or moralistic, but most of the time he is a killer with little regard for other people. Overall I didn't like him.

I think Iaian Banks writes in a way that makes me uncertain about who character are and what they are really thinking or feeling, even after a full novel following their actions. Diziet Sma has been the second most prominent character in "Use of Weapons", but I feel very little of a connection to her. At best, I'm ambivalent about even Banks' most likable characters.

Also, this book has a twist at the end that I thought was clear (and annoying) half-way through the book. It wasn't clever, and it made me think the author was trying to outsmart his readers. ( )
  wishanem | Jan 27, 2015 |
This is the third Culture Series novel I've read after Consider Phlebas and The Player of Games. It's also the third hit in a row and I must admit, I thought it was going to be hard to improve upon TPoG but this book did it. Overall Use of Weapons had a totally different style and pace then the first two books I mention and structurally the novel can be quite difficult to follow. By approximately one-quarter of the way through I was hooked and immensely enjoyed the book overall. I also thoroughly enjoy the drone element Banks adds to the story to give it a more humorous and cynical dialogue to the story. Definitely will be continuing with the next Culture book. ( )
  briandarvell | Dec 10, 2014 |
One of the best of the Culture series - which ranks as one of the best SF visionary series in decades. ( )
  DaveCapp | Oct 22, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 71 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Banks, Iain M.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Keynäs, VilleTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Walotsky, RonCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Youll,PaulCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 185723135X, Paperback)

The man known as Cheradenine Zakalwe was one of Special Circumstances' foremost agents, changing the destiny of planets to suit the Culture through intrigue, dirty tricks or military action. The woman known as Diziet Sma had plucked him from obscurity and pushed him towards his present eminence, but despite all their dealings she did not know him as well as she thought. The drone known as Skaffen-Amtiskaw knew both of these people. It had once saved the woman's life by massacring her attackers in a particularly bloody manner. It believed the man to be a burnt-out case. But not even its machine intelligence could see the horrors in his past.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:21:52 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Ferociously intelligent, both witty and horrific, this novel from Ian M. Banks, author of 'Consider Phlebas' and 'The player of Games', is science fiction at its best.

(summary from another edition)

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Orbit Books

2 editions of this book were published by Orbit Books.

Editions: 185723135X, 0316030570

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