full life

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Just finished "Use of Weapons", the third book in Iain M. Banks' Culture novels. I'm not necessarily that big a sci-fi reader; I only got into this series because of the AV Club's review of "Matter", which came out earlier this year and which I bought on a whim at Heathrow while killing time before our flight. (As each novel is self-contained, it doesn't necessarily matter where you start.)

I generally have the same reaction whenever I read one of these books; I start out very confused, because Banks has this annoying tendency of over-describing everything and also purposely omitting the names of the characters in each scene until much later; then I get sucked into the story and the idea of the Culture itself; and then, finally, I get punched in the face by the ending. Each ending in these books is generally pretty bleak, and "Use of Weapons" might be the bleakest - and the twist, revealed in the final sentences of the story, is an absolute mindfuck.

Next up: The Watchmen.

Dinner tonight with friends at Il Bastardo. It's been a while since I ate out with friends; my stomach has been really good recently, though, especially since I started taking the thyroid medicine, and so I'm hopeful it won't be that big a deal.