Born: 16 February 1954
Died: 9 June 2013 (cancer)
Birthplace: Dunfermline, Scotland
Best known as: The author of The Wasp Factory
Name at birth: Iain Menzies BanksIain Banks wrote literary novels such as The Wasp Factory and science fiction novels such as those in The Culture series. He was born and raised in Scotland, a location that figured prominently in many of his mainstream novels. After graduating from the University of Stirling in 1975, he worked odd jobs and wrote science fiction novels, but couldn't get published. After several rejections, The Wasp Factory was at last published in 1984 to much acclaim (and some controversy) for its weirdness and its depiction of violence. Throughout the remainder of his career, Banks alternated between mainstream fiction -- with a skewed perspective -- and science fiction of the "space opera" type. He also used numerous interviews, the internet and letters to newspapers to make his liberal political views known. Banks was close to his fans, and on 3 April he announced on his website that he'd been diagnosed with inoperable gall bladder cancer. He died two months later, just before the publication of his final novel, The Quarry. His novels include The Crow Road (1992), Complicity (1993), A Song of Stone (1997) and The Steep Approach to Garbadale (2007) ; novels in his Culture series include Consider Phlebas (1987), Use of Weapons (1990), Inversions (1998) and The Hydrogen Sonata (2012).
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