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Whit

Whit, a novel by Iain Banks, is told in the voice of Isis Whit, a young but important member of a small, quirky cult in Scotland. Like all of Banks' characters, from Frank Cauldhame in The Wasp Factory to Prentice McHoan in The Crow Road, she's a character in a half-unconscious search for knowledge which will inevitably turn her world upside down.

Isis, otherwise The Blessed Very Reverend Gaia-Marie Isis Saraswati Minerva Mirza Whit of Luskentyre, Beloved Elect of God III, is granddaughter and spiritual heir of Salvador Whit, patriarch of the Luskentyrians, who live in a low-tech commune and reject most technology even at great inconvenience to themselves. They also run their lives according to a makeshift collection of beliefs and obsessive little rituals. The heart of the novel intercuts Isis' voyage through southern England, dealing with rastas, policemen, racist skinheads and other dubious characters of a sort she has never encountered, with her recitation of the official history of the cult and the rationale behind its rules.



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