May Books 16) Surface Detail, by Iain Banks

buzz
Not an outstanding novel from Banks, and one that I felt was perhaps twice as long as it needed to be - gareth_rees had warned of some of its deficiencies and his criticisms are valid. The bits I enjoyed most concerned the story of the indentured slave Lededje Y'breq, unexpectedly liberated and preparing vengeance on her former master - the "surface detail" of the title appears to refer both to the tattoo that was the mark of her indenture and the new one she acquires from the Culture. But too many of the other plot strands were pursued at greater length than they could really bear before fizzling out.

(I have logged 18 books in total for May. Two friends sent me manuscripts of their unpublished books - one an sf novel, the other a historical Northern Ireland-related topic - and happened to get me at the right moment, so I am tallying those as well for my total.)

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