Consider Phlebas

‘That is the way with all of your kind,’ Xoxarle said to the old man, who wasn’t looking. ‘It is how you are made; you must all strive to claw your way over the backs of your fellow humans during the short time you are permitted in the universe, breeding when you can, so that the strongest strains survive and the weakest die. I would no more blame you for that than I would try to convert some non-sentient carnivore to vegeterianism. You are all on your own side. With us it is different.’ Xoxarle looked at Horza. ‘You must agree with that Changer ally.’

Iain M. Banks, Orbit 2013 (Original release: Macmillan London 1987)


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