- Libro de bolsillo: 512 páginas
- Editor: Bantam USA; Edición: Bantam Mass Mar (31 de diciembre de 1998)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 0553575376
- ISBN-13: 978-0553575378
- Valoración media de los clientes: Sé el primero en opinar sobre este producto
- Clasificación en los más vendidos de Amazon: nº154.051 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros (Ver el Top 100 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros)
Excession (Inglés) Libro de bolsillo – 31 dic 1998
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"Banks is a phenomenon...wildly successful, fearlessly creative."
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A diplomat is sent to investigate the sudden disappearance of a star older than the universe, requiring him to steal the soul of the long-deceased starship captain who first encountered the star and bring her back to life. Reprint.Ver Descripción del producto
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Of these, Excession was the hardest to follow, although I mostly understood it by the end, as with most Culture books. This novel features the characters of Starship Minds most heavily, amid an historic scientific event and a (minor) intragalactic war. There are some amazing scenes depicted that will stimulate your imagination, and some fantastic dialog between these starships. There is also one of the only space battle scenes ever depicted in the Culture, and it's quite an awesome one.
I wouldn't start the Culture series with this novel, but it's still a very good one and worth reading if you like the others. Very imaginative sci-fi.
What makes these characters enjoyable, though, is that their culture (as, in effect, de facto protectors of The Culture civilization) feels so human, with dignity, noble goals, ethics, protocols, social norms, and an admirable overall desire to make things better. The fact that The Culture is built on individual freedom, including freedom to do what you will and freedom from the nasty and brutish challenges of illness, physical disadvantages (let alone disabilities), and poverty, makes it easier to root for these "Minds". And the fact that The Culture is not perfect at achieving these goals, especially when it comes to meddling with less advanced civilizations, makes it all the more believable. Otherwise it'd just be too utopian.
There's a mystery at the heart of this novel: A mysterious ship (if it is in fact a ship) that suddenly appears in a corner of the galaxy. Nobody knows what it's about, where it's from, what it wants. But it may have appeared previously long ago. The only thing that's clear is that it's vastly more powerful than the Minds who are the giants of The Culture.
This is a very enjoyable read, and is one of the few novels I've read that I plan to read again.
All that aside, it's a Culture book by Banks, so OF COURSE it's another brilliant, enjoyable, confusing, endearing, and fascinating glimpse into that universe. There are references to events and beings from the other books, but like all Culture novels, it stands on its own perfectly well. Still, it helps a lot to have read a few other Culture novels before this one so you have some rough idea of what ship Minds are.
Most, though not all, of his SF is written in the Culture milieu. The Culture is an extremely advanced post-scarcity galactic society in which most of the hard decisions of running the society are made by hyper-intelligent, self-aware starship Minds. Many of the ship Minds are as interesting characters as the people are. It is a vastly imaginative, enormously rich setting, covering expanses of space and time possibly second only to Steven Baxter and Olaf Stapledon, though with much more human and sympathetic characters than Baxter (and without Baxter's tendency to "everyone dies happily ever after" endings).
In my opinion, Excession is the best introduction to the Culture, and the best place to start reading Iain M. Banks' SF works, even though it is not chronologically the earliest. My suggested reading order would be Excession, then Consider Phlebas, followed in pretty much any order by Look to Windward, Matter, Surface Detail, and The Player of Games. Use of Weapons and The State of the Art are side threads that can go into the list at any point, and The Algebraist, while technically not a Culture novel, is not incompatible with it. And you should finish up with The Hydrogen Sonata, the last Culture book Iain completed before his death, because ... well, by then, you'll understand why.
It is an incredibly bitter irony that Iain's final book (which was general fiction) was about a man dealing with the discovery that he has terminal cancer and has only a few months to live, and that a few months before completing the book, he discovered that he himself had terminal cancer and had only months to live. But those of us who know and love his Culture novels will forever believe that Iain M. Banks did not die. He sublimed.
By the time you reach The Hydrogen Sonata, you'll understand that statement.