Consider Phlebas

Consider Phlebas

Paperback, 471 pages

Published April 14th 1988 by Orbit


The war raged across the galaxy. Billions had died, billions more were doomed. Moons, planets, the very stars themselves, faced destruction, cold-blooded, brutal, and worse, random. The Idirans fought for their Faith; the Culture for its moral right to exist. Principles were at stake. There could be......more


J.G. Keely

Welcome to another edition of 'Notable Genre Author Fails to Impress Some Guy on the Internet', I'll be your host: some guy.

Like so many highly-lauded authors featured here, Banks has been haunting my shelf for quite some time now. Countless are the times I have passed this book before ......more


And today, mine is going to be unpopular. But remember the

Or maybe I mean false equivalency. Regardless: you are not what you like. If I dislike something you love, I am not disliking

But you may not want to read my review, friends who love this book.

is classic......more


Many discerning readers, even ones who like SF, will reflexively sneer if you say the dreaded words "space opera". One need only think of E.E. Doc Smith, for a long time the unquestioned king of this particular sub-genre. I read

when I was at primary school; like innumerable other geeky......more

mark monday

Consider Iain M. Banks. an unsentimental, often ruthless writer. his characters are provided robust emotional lives and richly detailed backgrounds... all the better to punish the reader when those characters meet their often bleak fates. his narratives are ornate affairs, elaborately designed, full......more


I can't really say much, other than Iain Banks has become my #1 favorite Sci-Fi author. I love the way he fleshes out flawed, believable characters in a Space Opera setting. I'm always surprised by his writing, and that keeps me coming back for more. If you're not into the genre, but want to give it......more

Kevin Kelsey

In my introductory essay on Iain Banks and the Culture,

, I mention that he approached fiction with a certain kind of duality, representing and considering ideologies and viewpoints antagonistic with one another. In Consider Phlebas, his first published novel in the series, he takes this......more

Mario the lone bookwolf

There are some motives and ideas that pop up in all of Banks' works. In this, his first culture novel, I want to mention some of them.

His background in philosophy and psychology enabled him to combine Sci-Fi with really deep criticism regarding the human past, presence and f......more


Two stars is about right.

Voltaire said something like "the best is the enemy of the good" (okay, he actually said

). But what is really annoying is that the

is more disappointing than the


Banks clearly has a great deal of imagination. If ......more


This is the second Culture book I read but the first one Iain M. Banks wrote. One of us did something wrong, because I liked The Player of Games a

more, and yet my reasons for not liking Consider Phlebas are almost all about what the book isn't.

It isn't about the Culture, fo......more


It’s not you, it’s me.

I’ve got to watch out for space operas. I will either buy in early or … I just won’t. And then I’m staring at 400 pages of … ehh.

It’s too bad, I really liked the idea and Banks’ writing seemed inspired. There was a cool interstellar culture called … The ......more

About the author(Iain M. Banks)

Iain M. Banks is a pseudonym of

which he used to publish his Science Fiction.

Banks's father was an officer in the Admiralty and his mother was once a professional ice skater. Iain Banks was educated at the University of Stirling where he studied English Literature, Philosoph......more

Read More From Iain M. Banks

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