The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

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For all that the books are epic in scope and derangingly replete in detail, The Hydrogen Sonata reiterates a key theme: that personal fulfilment, in whatever form that takes, is rare and to be treasured.
-Guardian

Synopsis

The New York Times bestselling Culture novel...
The Scavenger species are circling. It is, truly, provably, the End Days for the Gzilt civilization.

An ancient people, organized on military principles and yet almost perversely peaceful, the Gzilt helped set up the Culture ten thousand years earlier and were very nearly one of its founding societies, deciding not to join only at the last moment. Now they've made the collective decision to follow the well-trodden path of millions of other civilizations; they are going to Sublime, elevating themselves to a new and almost infinitely more rich and complex existence.

Amid preparations though, the Regimental High Command is destroyed. Lieutenant Commander (reserve) Vyr Cossont appears to have been involved, and she is now wanted - dead, not alive. Aided only by an ancient, reconditioned android and a suspicious Culture avatar, Cossont must complete her last mission given to her by the High Command. She must find the oldest person in the Culture, a man over nine thousand years old, who might have some idea what really happened all that time ago.

It seems that the final days of the Gzilt civilization are likely to prove its most perilous.
 

About Iain M. Banks

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Iain Banks came to controversial public notice with the publication of his first novel, The Wasp Factory, in 1984. Consider Phlebas, his first science fiction novel, was published under the name Iain M. Banks in 1987. He is now widely acclaimed as one of the most powerful, innovative and exciting writers of his generation.
 
Published October 9, 2012 by Orbit. 518 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction, Science & Math. Fiction
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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Stuart Kelly on Oct 10 2012

For all that the books are epic in scope and derangingly replete in detail, The Hydrogen Sonata reiterates a key theme: that personal fulfilment, in whatever form that takes, is rare and to be treasured.

Read Full Review of The Hydrogen Sonata | See more reviews from Guardian

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