Damn! Banks can weave a tale! This is one complex story. Events set around the discovery of an Excession (Something excessive) that could be a danger to all. The Excession is capable of things no culture/species in the universe is capable of doing, maybe even destroying the universe. If that wasn’t enough to deal with there are conspiracies, spies, war, relationships and love.
Banks does a wonderful job of weaving the story lines together. Each character is developed so well you feel what each of them are going through (even the “traitors”) and understand why they do what they do.
Even though the story deals with dark material like death, war, love and hate etc., there is still humor throughout the story.
This is one of those books that you don’t want to end, but when it’s over you are totally satisfied and can’t quit smiling.