The Culture Reading Order

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The Culture is a series of books by Iain M. Banks, all of which take place in the same universe, but also stand-alone, sometimes spanning hundreds of years. It’s a unique take on a shared universe and a sci-fi series. We hope you enjoy!

What’s in The Culture Reading Order?

The Culture reading order assembles all of the books in this shared universe created by scottish author, Iain M. Banks. Each book mostly stands on its own, but they all exist in the same universe. There are many ways to place these books in order. However, as with our other timelines, we go chronologically by default.

Be sure to let us know if there is anything wrong with this timeline. We welcome and and all input you may have. You can do this on our contact page. And if you liked this timeline, perhaps you’ll enjoy some of our others, like our Expanse timeline.

Where to start reading The Culture?

There is no perfect way to read this series. Additionally, each book stands on its own, and the only references to other books come in the form of historical footnotes. You can read by release date, chronological, or any other order. It does matter. However, we do recommend starting with the first book ever published, Consider Phlebas.

Once you have read this first book, you’re at a good launching point to read all of the remaining books. And with that, we hope you enjoy this chronological reading order of The Culture books.

1BuyInversionsNovelIain M. BanksUnknown1998-06-00
2BuyConsider PhlebasNovelIain M. Banks1331 CE1987-00-00
3BuyExcessionNovelIain M. Banks1867 CE1996-00-00
4BuyThe State of the ArtAnthologyIain M. Banks1977 CE1989-05-00
5BuyThe Player of GamesNovelIain M. Banks2083 CE1988-08-00
6BuyUse of WeaponsNovelIain M. Banks2092 CE1990-00-00
7BuyMatterNovelIain M. Banks2167 CE2008-01-31
8BuyLook to WindwardNovelIain M. Banks2167 CE2000-08-00
9BuyThe Hydrogen SonataNovelIain M. Banks2375 CE2012-10-00
10BuySurface DetailNovelIain M. Banks2967 CE2010-10-07

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