Your chance to see some of the best shows in this year’s Fringe! You may claim as many different offers as you wish, but only one pair of tickets per voucher, on a FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED basis. Please take the whole magazine along with you each time. All offers are subject to availability and the individual management's

decision is final. Tickets should be picked up on the day of the performance in each case. ENJOY THE SHOW!

unarguably saying that it’s a load of crap. frankly. and is based on lies and manipulation and simple power. I tried to paint the most benign cult I could imagine. but even that is still based on deceit. lies and betrayal.‘

Banks. in his own words an ‘evangelical atheist‘. views religion as politics. ‘religion is a way of making people behave in a certain way in society. It’s giving you little on-board. in-built sensors that make you not think certain things or


at the very least. feel guilty about having thought them. Obviously religion wouldn’t have survived if it hadn't to some extent been beneficial to society and to a large extent it has been. The problem comes when people extend the principle of “Well. I've been told this. therefore I must believe this. therefore I must behave in a certain way" to “L0! the infidels. let's kill them. put men. women and children to the sword. they don’t think the same way we do."

The result is a panoramic. comedic romp that. as well as aiming a few keen darts at organised religion. paints a telling picture of 90s Britain from the point of view of a teenage virgin ingenue messiah a characterisation that bearded. male. married. 4]-year-old Banks had no problem tackling. ‘The Elect Of God bit. almost any writer can handle that!‘ he laughs.

To write Isis he had to ‘tighten up'. in contrast to ‘thc process of subtraction‘ he followed to write Cameron Colley. the debauched hack at the centre of his last non-sci-fi book. the terrifying and compulsive Comp/icity.

‘Cameron‘s much more pushy and aggressive and frenetic and insecure than me. and he does a lot more drugs than I ever did! But the fact that I can give Cameron the same sort of choices in music and stuff like that. I can imagine if I was in the same situation. it wouldn‘t take that much change in me to be like him. I’m a bit more laid back. I’ve got a security problem most writers have got an insecurity problem. I‘m too bloody bumptious by half!’

Bumptious. but never complacent. Banks calls Cmnplicirv ‘undoubtedly the nastiest of my books. worse than Wasp l‘kit'tr2/3‘.‘ a tone catalysed by ‘total catharsis. It was a scream of anguish directed at the zeitgeist of the 80s and Thatcherism and Conservatism and right-wing thinking and monetarism and all that shit.‘

‘My blood still boils all too often.’ he says. This very moment he has a ‘stinking letter‘ to Marks & Spencer in his jacket. to accompany the shards of his Marks & Spencer charge-card. He has just found out that caring. sharing Markies have donated forty grand to the Tories.

‘l‘m going to become an ethical consumer. There is this responsibility all these people go out and buy my books and I get my l() per cent or whatever of the cover price. and I expect they expect me to use my cut responsibly. and not indirectly give it back to the bustanls!‘ lain Banks sits back. Like his books. he doesn‘t sound bumptious. Just passionate.

Whit is published by Little, Brown on 29 August at £15.99.


Two tickets for the price of one to see Take the Floor on Tues 29 Aug (11.00pm). Tickets should be picked up from the Traverse box office from 10.00am.

10 pairs of tickets available.


Free tickets to see Still/Here on Fri 25 Aug (7.30pm). Tickets should be collected from the Edinburgh Festival box office from 9.00am.

10 pairs of tickets available.


Free tickets to see Dallas and Parker on Mon 28 and Tue 29 Aug (6.15pm). Tickets should be collected from the Chaplaincy Centre box office from 10.30am. I

10 pairs available per night.


Free tickets to see The Frontmen on Fri 25 Aug (12.30pm) and Mon 28 Aug (12.30pm). Tickets should be collected from Pleasance Box office from 11.00am.

5 pairs of tickets available.


Two tickets for the price of one to see Café Graffiti Cabaret on Mon 28 Aug (9.45pm). Tickets should be collected from Mansfield Place church from 1 1.00am.

10 pairs of tickets available.


Two tickets for the price of one to see Harold on the Holyrood on Fri 26, Sun 28 and Thurs 31 Aug (9.30pm). Free tickets on Sat 2 Sept (9.30pm). Tickets should be collected from Moray House box office from 11.00am.

10 pairs available per night.

The List 25 Aug-7 Sept 1995 17