Walking on Glass, by Iain Banks

The one with three separate stories running in parallel: Graham Park and his love for the mysterious Sara ffitch; Steven Grout and his paranoid fantasies, and Quiss, who lives in a castle made of books, and is forced to play games whose rules are not clear.

Must have read this about twenty years ago, and remembered being impressed with it, but I also remembered feeling slightly cheated that the stories didn't link up particularly well. So I was a bit interested to re-read it and see if the stories did link up after all, but that I'd just missed the connection the first time round.

Well I don't think I'd missed anything: the stories don't really have much to do with one another (although there's what feels like a bit of a perfunctory effort to make them connect - e.g. Grout makes stacks of books in his room which bring to mind the castle that Quiss lives in).

The story I liked most, the one which was most conventional (or least unconventional) was the Graham/Sara one. I remember feeling attracted to Sara the first time I read it, and it happened again this time. But I also remembered that it would end badly, and a particularly shocking scene which I've never forgotten retained its power this time even though I knew it was coming.

I've not read many of Bank's SF books but I guess the Quiss story may be like those. Didn't really like it though: interesting premise but no follow-though.

Nice to read it again.

Completed : 07-Jul-2013

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