'Her eyes were black, wide as though with some sustained surprise, the skin from their outer corners to her small ears taut. Her lips were pale, and nearly too full for her small mouth, like something bled but bruised. He had never seen anyone or anything quite so beautiful in his life.'
Graham Park is in love. But Sara Fitch is an enigma to him, a creature of almost perverse mystery. Steven Grout is paranoid — and with justice. He knows that They are out to get him. They are.
Quiss, insecure in his fabulous if ramshackle castle, is forced to play interminable impossible games. The solution to the oldest of all paradoxical riddles will release him. But he must find an answer before he knows the question.
Park, Grout, Quiss — no trio could be further apart. But their separate courses are set for collision.
'Inexorably powerful … sinister manipulations and magnetic ambiguities' – Observer
'The author's powerful imagination is displayed here every bit as vividly as in his debut' – Financial Times
'Establishes beyond doubt that Iain Banks is a novelist of remarkable talents' – Daily Telegraph
Iain Menzies Banks (officially Iain Banks, 1954-2013) was a Scottish writer. Iain Banks read English literature, philosophy and psychology at Stirling University. He moved to London and lived in the south of England until 1988 when he returned to Fife.
Banks sprang to public notice with the publication of his first novel, The Wasp Factory, in 1984. Since then, Banks has gained great popular and critical acclaim. The Times has acclaimed Iain Banks ”the most imaginative British novelist of his generation”. As Iain M. Banks he writes science fiction and as Iain Banks he writes literary fiction. Much of Banks's science fiction deals with a vast interstellar civilisation, the Culture.
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