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Biased and superficial Science Fiction reviews


Copyright 1965 by Frank Herbert

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SOJALS rating:     
one SOJALS point one SOJALS point one SOJALS point no SOJALS point no SOJALS point    Good (3/5)

I first read this in 1975 and most recently on the 3rd August 2020

You know the story. On the planet of Arrakis, the young Paul Atreides, his father the Duke murdered, flees with his mother to the desert to escape their deadly enemy - Baron Vladimir Harkonnen. They are saved in the desert by a band of very tough cave-dwellers. These Fremen see Paul and his mother Jessica as the fulfilment of a prophecy. He'll marry one of Fremen women and finally Paul will lead the Fremen in a revolt against the bloody Baron and the revolting imperial emperor.

I have to admit, I've never really loved the novel. I've just reread it now after just finishing "The Space Between Worlds" by Mcaiah Johnson, and I rather preferred the latter. I know Frankie was a product of his time but the sexism is disconcerting, the feudal class system that is innate to the novel is repellent. and the supposedly profound Bene Gesseret maxims and teachings now seem trite, meaningless or just plain wrong.

Note that I absolutely love his other works such as "Hellstrom's Hive", and the Pandora trilogy ("Destination: Void", "The Jesus Incident", the "The Lazarus Effect", and "The Ascension Factor". I recently reread "Whipping Star" and "The Dosadi Experiment" and they are brilliant, exciting, entertaining and surprisingly humorous. But "Dune" (and it's successors)? I suppose I'm rather down on the idea of living drugged-up lifestyles in drafty, damp caves with people who happily kill each other for promotion or just to soak the water out of the corpse. Reminds me too much of uni. I prefer civilization, with its flush toilets and Japanese washerettes.

I quite liked the movie though, and I'm really looking for to Denis Villeneuve's 2020 Dune version.

Loaded on the 22nd December 2020.
Cover of Dune
Cover art by Bruce Pennington

Reviews of other works by Frank Herbert:
The Green Brain
The Heaven Makers
The Santoraga Barrier
Dune Messiah
Whipping Star
The Godmakers
The Book Of Frank Herbert
The Dosadi Experiment
Direct Descent
The Priests Of Psi
The White Plague

Reviews of other works by Frank Herbert and Bill Ransom:
The Jesus Incident
The Lazarus Effect
The Ascension Factor

Reviews of other works by Frank Herbert and Brian Herbert:
Man Of Two Worlds

Reviews of other works with covers by Bruce Pennington:
The Green Brain
The Book Of Frank Herbert
The Day Of Their Return