A Timely Reform by Ian Ridley

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Iain M. Banks in Leicester

Sunday, June 5th, 2011
Iain M. Banks

Iain M. Banks

I went to my first ever book signing on Friday. Iain M. Banks was at the Phoenix Square in Leicester as part of a mini-tour to launch the paperback of his novel Surface Detail.

It was great timinng for me as I’d finished the book a few days ago, just as a friend alerted me to the event on Facebook. I love most of Iain M. Banks’ science fiction novels and keep meaning to read more of his non-science fiction work.

The evening, organised by alt.fiction included a reading from the novel by Iain followed by a Q & A session. He came across as a personable and engaging speaker and it was interesting to hear his responses to various questions about the Culture, science fiction and writing in general.

You can listen to a podcast of the evening thanks to the nice people at Un:Bound.

Surface Detail

Recent reading

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005

Just finished The Algebraist by Iain M. Banks. Not quite as sharp as most of his other books but the concepts and storytelling still made it a page turner. 4/5

I also got half-way through If Only by Geri Halliwell. OK so I needed a break from the heavy sci-fi and I usually dip into biographies for this. I found her early life interesting – upbringing, trying out different careers and wanting to make it big. After the Spice Girls signed their first record deal it seemed to be getting predictably celeb infested. 3/5 for the first half and 1/5 for the second half.

I’m now just beginning Newton’s Wake by Ken Macleod. Although the concepts are good I often find his narrative can be a bit plodding. Here’s hoping for something better.

Other stuff I want to read:
Pandoras Star and Judas Unchained by Peter F. Hamilton. These look much better than the disappoiting follow-ups to the Night’s Dawn Trilogy, which in any case suffered from a dodgy ending.
Dark Light and Engine City by Ken Macleod. I read all but the last couple of pages of Dark Light but lost the book!
Some recent books by Larry Niven, which seem to have passed me by.