Iain M. Banks

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Iain M. Banks

18 Quotations from Iain M. Banks

antigravity n. 1990 I. M. Banks Use of Weapons (1992) ii. 38 Adults just assumed that there was some trick behind the apparently unsupported body of the machine, but children wanted to know how it worked. One or two scientists and engineers had looked startled, too, but she guessed a stereotype of unworldiness [sic] meant nobody believed them that there must be something odd going on. Anti gravity was what was going on, and the drone in this society was like a flashlight in the stone age, but—to her surprise—it was almost disappointingly easy just to brazen it out.
automatics n. 2004 I. M. Banks Algebraist i. 36 Working on the principle that whatever can go wrong will, I have been weighing up the possibilities that our house automatics have rusted into a single unusable mass, crumbled to a fine powder or unexpectedly declared themselves sentient, necessitating the destruction by fusion warheads of our entire house, Sept and possibly planet.
dropshaft n. 2010 I. M. Banks Surface Detail 32 They were struggling to comprehend what was happening to their world. Its end, Yime Nsokyi thought as she’d careened down a drop shaft from the traveltube interchange she’d been in as the attack began.
elsewhen adv. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist ii. 136 We need something different. Elsewhen or elsestuff or elsewhere.
energy weapon n. 2003 I. M. Banks Look To Windward iv. 70 They ran out into the rain; the building behind them burned and slumped and fell, turned to glowing slag by the energy weapons.
gas giant n. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist Prologue 3 Sunlight poured from the purple sky visible between the curve of eastward horizon (hills, haze) and the enormous overhanging bulk of the gas-giant planet Nasqueron filling the majority of the sky (motley with all the colours of the spectrum below bright yellow, multitudinously spotted, ubiquitously zoned and belted with wild liquidic squiggles).
in-system adv. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist ii. 132 Starting the day after martial law was declared there had been a sequence of attacks, mostly on isolated and system-edge craft and settlements, though with some worrying assaults further in-system, including one on a Navarchy dock-habitat in Sepekte’s own trailing Lagrange that had killed over a thousand.
intergalactic adj. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist iii. 166 The outward journey allegedly took almost no time, because it was conducted through an intergalactic wormhole, the portal location of which is amongst those included in the Dweller List.
kiloyear n. 2004 I. M. Banks Algebraist v. 357 ‘Thirty-four kiloyears?’ Fassin said. It felt like he was going to black out again. ‘You mean...’ His voice trailed off. ‘Thirty-four thousand light years, standard. Roughly. Apologies for any confusion.’
laser rifle n. 2003 I. M. Banks Look To Windward x. 196 There they had taught him fencing, trained him with a crossbow and with projectile weapons and early laser rifles.
nanotechnology n. 1993 I. M. Banks Against Dark Background 285 The nanotechnology and tissue-cloning techniques that repaired the ravages of the radiation pulse were only withdrawn after the course of treatment had finished.
nonhumanoid adj. 2012 I. M. Banks Hydrogen Sonata iv. 56 It involves a fast, powerful ship, a single surgical strike with full end-operator tactical-choice freedom and – in case any further action is required – a micro-force of just two: a highly augmented special forces field-colonel and a non-humanoid combat arbite [sic].
planet-wide adj. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist iii. 157 The gas-giant filled the sky, so close that its rotund bulk took on the appearance of a vast wall, its belts and zones of tearing, swirling, ever-eddying clouds looking like colossal contra-rotating, planet-wide streams of madly coloured liquid caught whirling past each other under perfectly transparent ice.
scout ship n. 2004 I. M. Banks Algebraist iv. 259 It boasted a crew of just five apart from its captain and was rotund and slow, but was—for some reason lost in the mists of Dweller military logic—still registered as an uncommitted privateer scout ship and so cleared to make her way within the war zone and, one might hope, liable to pass any consequent challenge save one conducted by opening fire prior to negotiations.
space-borne adj. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist i. 37 Sal had let the flier slip four hundred metres or so into the shadows under the intact forward portion of the hull—climbing gently all the time, following the mangled, buckled floors and collapsed bulkheads forming the terrain beneath them—until they could see only the slimmest sliver of violet, star-spattered sky outside and felt they ought to be safe from whatever spaceborne craft—presumably a Beyonder—had been attacking anything that moved or had recently been moving on the surface.
spacefaring adj. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist v. 368 Because if all this was real then he was, maybe, on the brink of the most astounding discovery in all human history, a revelation that could do untold harm or bring inestimable benefits to any combination of the Mercatoria, its adversaries and just about every other space-faring species in the galaxy.
super-weapon n. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist ii. 135 Hey, I'm a human being but I'm twenty thousand light years from home and we're all living in the midst of mad-shit aliens and super-weapons and the whole fucking bizarre insane swirl of galactic history and politics!
wormhole n. 2005 I. M. Banks Algebraist i. 19 Following the Third Diasporian Age (and much more besides—galactic history wasn’t really simple on any scale) another wormhole brought Ulubis back on-line to become part of the Third Complex.