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Iain Banks has terminal cancer.

(25 Posts)
PeachActiviaMinge Wed 03-Apr-13 12:17:01

Author Iain Banks has revealed that he has late stage cancer and is unlikely to live for more than a year.

I am deeply saddened to read this today Iain Banks is one of my favourite authors I've walked many a road with Mr Banks and it's sad to know that I will not walk anymore. sad

PeachActiviaMinge Wed 03-Apr-13 12:18:30

Text from his personal website as it's currently down due to increased traffic.

"I am officially Very Poorly.
After a couple of surgical procedures, I am gradually recovering from jaundice caused by a blocked bile duct, but that - it turns out - is the least of my problems.
I first thought something might be wrong when I developed a sore back in late January, but put this down to the fact I'd started writing at the beginning of the month and so was crouched over a keyboard all day. When it hadn't gone away by mid-February, I went to my GP, who spotted that I had jaundice. Blood tests, an ultrasound scan and then a CT scan revealed the full extent of the grisly truth by the start of March.
I have cancer. It started in my gall bladder, has infected both lobes of my liver and probably also my pancreas and some lymph nodes, plus one tumour is massed around a group of major blood vessels in the same volume, effectively ruling out any chance of surgery to remove the tumours either in the short or long term.
The bottom line, now, I'm afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I'm expected to live for 'several months' and it’s extremely unlikely I'll live beyond a year. So it looks like my latest novel, The Quarry, will be my last.
As a result, I've withdrawn from all planned public engagements and I've asked my partner Adele if she will do me the honour of becoming my widow (sorry - but we find ghoulish humour helps). By the time this goes out we'll be married and on a short honeymoon. We intend to spend however much quality time I have left seeing friends and relations and visiting places that have meant a lot to us. Meanwhile my heroic publishers are doing all they can to bring the publication date of my new novel forward by as much as four months, to give me a better chance of being around when it hits the shelves.
There is a possibility that it might be worth undergoing a course of chemotherapy to extend the amount of time available. However that is still something we're balancing the pros and cons of, and anyway it is out of the question until my jaundice has further and significantly, reduced. Lastly, I'd like to add that from my GP onwards, the professionalism of the medics involved - and the speed with which the resources of the NHS in Scotland have been deployed - has been exemplary, and the standard of care deeply impressive. We're all just sorry the outcome hasn't been more cheerful.
A website is being set up where friends, family and fans can leave messages for me and check on my progress. It should be up and running during this week and a link to it will be here on my official website as soon as it’s ready.
Iain Banks"

LadyWidmerpool Wed 03-Apr-13 12:26:11

Very sad news.

Haberdashery Wed 03-Apr-13 12:33:39

This is very sad indeed.

silverfrog Wed 03-Apr-13 12:35:27


I have lost so many hours and days to Iain (M) Banks books, going right back to being about 14.

how sad.

tribpot Wed 03-Apr-13 12:39:10

It is very sad. I'm glad that he is able to manage his last months or hopefully year in the way that's best for him and his wife-to-be.

pepperrabbit Wed 03-Apr-13 12:42:42

Poor man, how grim.
I hope they manage a happy few months together.
Wasp Factory and then Crow Road were books that stay with you forever.

Freyaee Wed 03-Apr-13 12:43:55

Such sad news, but what a strong, funny and inspiring message he left on his website. I'm sure he must be feeling scared, but he is certainly very brave. I hope he gets to see his latest book published.

DuchessofMalfi Wed 03-Apr-13 12:52:35

Such sad news. My mother died of pancreatic cancer, 20 years ago. Horrible way to go. My sympathies to Iain Banks and his family sad

IndridCold Wed 03-Apr-13 14:03:06

Really sad, and shocking news.

Not only a wonderful writer, but he seemed a genuinely warm and funny man too.

BeerTricksPotter Wed 03-Apr-13 14:11:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Peggotty Wed 03-Apr-13 14:13:50

That's really sad, poor man. Crow Road is one of my favourite books. He's a real talent.

DontSHOUTTTTTT Wed 03-Apr-13 14:27:47

That is sad news.

I read the Wasp factory when it first came out when I was 18 and I really enjoyed it, my DS2 who is 18 just finished it last week and also really enjoyed it. I think that shows Iain Banks'es books have stood the test of time.

bran Wed 03-Apr-13 14:30:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

highlandcoo Wed 03-Apr-13 14:38:08

So sad to hear this news.

Espedair Street is one of my favourite books and I love Crow Road too. Just re-watched the TV adaptation over Christmas; the DVD includes a really nice interview with Iain Banks - such a likeable man. Intelligent but down-to-earth with a great sense of humour. Will be sadly missed.

SoupDragon Wed 03-Apr-13 14:39:55

How very sad.

cocolepew Wed 03-Apr-13 14:40:19

How sad.

NotTreadingGrapes Wed 03-Apr-13 14:43:31

"it felt like faith, like revelation, that things went on, that life ground on regardless, and mindless, and produced pain and pleasure and hope and fear and joy and despair, and you dodged some of it, and you sought some of it, and sometimes you were lucky, and sometimes you weren't, and sometimes you could plan your way ahead and that would have been the right thing to have done, but other times all you could do was forget about plans and just be ready to react, and sometimes the obvious was true and sometimes it wasn't, and sometimes experience helped but not always and it was all luck, fate, in the end you lived and you waited to see what happened, and you could rarely ever be sure that what you had done was really the right thing or the wrong thing, because things can always be better, and things can always be worse"

Espedair Street and one of my favourite ever passages. I took it off my wall just the other day.

Many a true word Mr. Banks. smile

mercibucket Wed 03-Apr-13 16:17:05


mercibucket Wed 03-Apr-13 16:17:05


MiddleAgeMiddleEngland Wed 03-Apr-13 16:31:05

Really sad news. I've tried a couple of his books and not really found them to be my sort of thing, but no matter, he's given lots of people lots of reading pleasure, and we can't all like the same fiction. Maybe I'll try one again.

I hope he is well cared for and can spend his last months in peace, knowing he will be truly missed.

CatelynStark Wed 03-Apr-13 16:35:34

Oh no! I'm gutted to hear this. I love all of his works, especially the Sci-fi Culture series. I can't understand why they've never been made into movies.

The man is a genius.

CreamolaFoamFan Wed 03-Apr-13 19:07:08

I remember picking up a book (I think it might have been Excession or Feersum Endjinn). It was bewildering and intriguing and like nothing I'd read before.

I am so sad to hear this news.

HearMyRoar Wed 03-Apr-13 19:38:34

I am so sad to hear this. It's hard to find the words, his sf blows my mind every time I read it.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Mon 08-Apr-13 00:04:48

Complicity stayed with me for ages, and I enjoyed lots of his others also.


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