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The State of the Art [Format Kindle]

Iain M. Banks
4.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)

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Descriptions du produit

Présentation de l'éditeur

The first ever collection of Iain Banks’s short fiction, this volume includes the acclaimed novella, The State of the Art. This is a striking addition to the growing body of Culture lore, and adds definition and scale to the previous works by using the Earth of 1977 as contrast. The other stories in the collection range from science fiction to horror, dark-coated fantasy to morality tale. All bear the indefinable stamp of Iain Banks’s staggering talent.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 2990 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 224 pages
  • Editeur : Orbit; Édition : New Ed (4 février 2010)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00371V6PW
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • : Non activé
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°97.772 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Une collection d'histoires hors norme 12 octobre 2003
Par "the_bug"
Format:Broché
Ce livre, contrairement aux autres livres d'Iain Banks, n'est pas une seule histoire, mais une collection d'histoires courtes. La plus longue est "The State of the Art" d'où le livre tire son titre.
Ce livre contient 8 histoires différentes, certaines basées dans son univers de la Culture, univers que l'on retrouve dans beaucoup de ses auters livres de science-fiction. D'autres se trouvent basées sur le monde réel, ou dans de nouveaux mini-univers, comme on en a déjà l'habitude avec ses œuvres de fiction.
On voit que l'auteur est capable de donner la même intensité aux histoires courtes qu'aux histoires longues, et ce livre est encore une fois la preuve de son immense talent.
A tous ceux qui ont un bon niveau d'anglais, je conseille vivement ce livre. Je suis sûr que la traduction française, si elle existe, est très bien, mais je suis sûr qu'on y perd quelque chose.
Moi en tout cas, j'ai apprécié ce livre autant que tous les autres livres d'Iain Banks, qui est devenu très rapidement mon auteur préféré!
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Short Stories from Iain M. Bank 15 novembre 2010
Format:Broché
I have been a regular reader of science fiction for 40 years and, when I discovered Iain M. Banks for the first time, I realised he was among the most prominent s-f writers of the century. "The State of the Art" was the eighth book I did read from him. I enjoyed reading it, but I didn't find this collection of short stories being his best. To me, he is much better in the long run, the development of a complicated plot seen from different points of views. In my opinion, the short story is completely another thing and Iain M. Banks doesn't measure in this field up to the giants of the genre. Among the 8 stories of the collection and perhaps because it is the longest, I think the Culture novella that gave its title to the book is the best and clearly wears the stamp of Iain Bank's tremendous talent. As for the other short fictions, which are indeed very diversified, some are good but others are not up to his usual high standard. I recommend rather this collection as an introduction to his major novels.
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Amazon.com: 4.1 étoiles sur 5  35 commentaires
26 internautes sur 26 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great sampling of his brilliance 19 mars 2003
Par Michael Battaglia - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
There are a few versions of this floating around. The one pictured on top of this page is the one I'll be talking about and is a collection of short fiction. There's at least one other published earlier that only contains the title story. "The State of the Art" is probably what this book is best known for, it's over a hundred pages long and thus dominates by far all of the other stories in the volume. It's also by far the best, probably because the length allows Banks to really run with his ideas and themes. Basically his ultra-advanced Culture runs into Earth circa 1977 and decides to hang around and observe for a bit. This allows Banks to indulge in quite a bit of social commentary in the form of "aliens telling us what we do wrong" but he keeps it balanced,... some of the Culture think Earth is a great place and there are more than a few arguments that the Culture itself is stifling and stagnant (not that these are new arguments to anyone who has read the other Culture novels), all in all it feels like a complete novel as opposed to a novella, and just about everything works. The book is worth it just for that story. Fortunately the others are all pretty decent, most are pretty short and thus don't have as much impact either because they're just downright weird (the one with the sentinent tree or whatever was just odd) or experimental (the last story especially, I suspect I missed a wagon-load of comments on British society) but most of the others, such as the other Culture story or the guy stuck in the astronaut suit work just right and show the depth and extent of Banks' vision. He's not concerned with working in just SF or just genre fiction or "just" anything, his stories run the gamut and are unmistakeably his, in whatever genre or strange mix thereof. These new to Banks would be wise to sample this and see what he's capable of before moving onto the (hard as it is to believe) vastly better novels. I wish I could say he's underrated, but it wouldn't be true.
16 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Simply the best sci-fi short story of the last 20 years. 24 février 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
Look at it this way - State of The Art is a great short story with some additional filler between the covers. But what a great short story it is. State of The Art finds the Culture arriving at Earth in 1978. By all accounts, the outlook is bleak for the human race. Contact, and our favorite Culture gal Dziet Sma, have to decide whether to get in touch with a world locked in a seemingly desperate arms race and the slow and painful destruction of the planet's ecosystem. Banks casts an ascerbic eye over the "state of the art" - both the Culture's and Earth's. By setting the story in the recent past, the reader knows that if the Culture had turned up just 10 years later the whole story would be different. Or would it? Sma and her crew-mates travel around the world sampling the delights and the horrors of Earth. Despite various cosmetic changes, is the planet in any better shape than it was 21 years ago? Is the Earth beyond hope? In a fitting gesture to the Culture's perverse tolerance for dissent, a crew member decides to stay. Why? And what, asks Banks, makes us human - and the Culture alien? A clever, philosophic and beautifully written story. Worth the price of the book alone.
17 internautes sur 19 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Not a short story collection. 15 juillet 2001
Par "nwc18" - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
...this is not a collection. There is a short-story collection of Banks', but it was only released by his British publisher (Orbit, in 1991). That collection is also called The State of the Art (the title novella does takes up close to 2/3 of the book...)... Any edition that is from 1989, or published by Mark V Ziesing, is the origional American version and only contains the novella.
Hope that helps out.
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Entertaining collection of stories, but be sure of the edition you have... 29 juin 2009
Par R S Cobblestone - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
There are at least two editions of this book around (I've got two in front of me as I write this), and there is a significant difference in addition to the cover art. The two editions I have are The State Of The Art (Night Shade Books) and The State of the Art (Orbit UK edition). The reviews posted on Amazon are the same for both editions, causing some confusion.

The Orbit edition has the following eight short stories:

- Road of Skulls
- A Gift from the Culture
- Odd Attachment
- Descendant
- Cleaning Up
- Piece
- The State of the Art
- Scratch

The Night Shade edition has these same stories plus an extra 21 pages of a "non-fiction" chapter titled "A Few Notes on the Culture." These notes are written in the form of a letter from author Iain M Banks to the reader, ending with "Anyway, that's more than enough of me pontificating. With best wishes for the future, Iain M Banks (Sun-Earther Iain El-Bonko Banks of North Queensferry)."

If you are a Culture fan, you'll want the Night Shade Books edition.

If you just want to read an interesting collection of (mostly) sci-fi stories, you can read either! "Odd Attachment" has a unique spin on the "she loves me, she loves me not" petal-pulling exercise. I also liked "Descendant", about the relationship between a man and an intelligent space suit. "The State of the Art" was almost 100 pages, and is about a Culture Contact team visiting Earth in 1977.

This is a book written for fans of both Iain M Banks and the Culture!
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A strong collection. 8 avril 2009
Par A. Whitehead - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
The State of the Art is Iain M. Banks first, and to date only, short story collection. It was originally published in 1991 and features both genre and mainstream fiction, as well as three stories set in his signature Culture setting.

The collection opens with 'Road of Skulls', a sort of jaunty little SF-fantasy tale with a Douglas Adams-esque comic conclusion. It's fun but very slight and very short. 'A Gift from the Culture', about a Culture citizen living undercover on a recently-Contacted world, is better but a bit odd. It's not a story by itself but feels like the opening chapter to a longer novel which ends in a rather pointless and abrupt manner. Interesting, and perhaps meant to convince us that Culture citizens aren't flawless, but still not the best story I've read.

'Odd Attachment' is dark and very funny, bringing a certain Monty Python and the Holy Grail scene to mind. This film is possibly a Banks touchstone, as he both appeared in the movie (he's one of the extras in the final scene) and referenced the rabbit scene in The Wasp Factory as well. 'Descendant', the second Culture story, is a story of survival and the bond between a man and his sentient spacesuit. A macabre and most effective story.

'Cleaning Up' is brilliant, a very funny SF novel about what happens to Earth when an alien spaceship accidentally dumps a load of rejected consumer products on the planet. From the evidence presented here (not to mention the humorous streaks in his other books), Banks could do a great SF comedy, and I'm surprised he's never tried to do it at novel length. 'Piece' is more sobering, a mainstream story reflecting on terrorism and the arguments of science versus faith and God versus evolution. A very thoughtful and prescient story with a gut-punch twist ending. 'Scratch' is very weird, a stream-of-consciousness oddity which is barely readable. Not really sure what Banks was aiming for there.

Fully half the book is taken up by the title novella. The premise of this story is very simple. The Culture's General Contact Unit Arbitrary arrives in orbit around the third planet of a remote, yellow star in the closing months of the year 1976 by the local calendar and spends the next fourteen months or so surveying the world to see if it is ready for official Contact. Much of the book is taken up by the attempts of the central character Diziet Sma to convince the Arbitrary's Mind - and thus the wider Culture - that Earth should be Contacted to prevent its inevitable slide into nuclear armageddon, whilst the Culture is more inclined to leave the planet as it is as a 'control experiment' to show the dangers faced by a nascent spacefaring civilisation. There isn't a huge amount of drama or personal jeopardy in the story, but the intellectual arguments between the two and the other characters' reactions to the situation are all handled intelligently and in a fascinating manner. The story also acts as an effective prequel to the third proper Culture novel, Use of Weapons.

The State of the Art (****) shows a broad range of Banks' writing skills and is well worth tracking down. The book is available from Orbit in the UK and Night Shade in the USA.
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