Dune by Frank Herbert
Dune was an interesting tale. It is not classic science fiction, which by definition endeavors to explore futuristic technology, but also focuses a lot on psychology. Even though the action is not extraordinary nor plentiful, the main focus of Dune does not lay in fighting scenes, but instead intriguing politics.
Dune is like a Biblical tale (replete with swords and the Messiah concept) mixed with Roman political system mixed with good-'ol in-depth politics mixed with a light futuristic array of technology (i.e. lasers, other lifeforms, etc...)
Overall, a pretty good read. 4/5.
You'd be surprised.
Submitted by Rain StormRaider
Undoubtedly, one of the best stories to have ever come out of the science fiction genre. It is truly above and beyond other works of futuristic fiction, based as it is on a world that has been one of the most complete ever conceived by a writer. Not since the Foundation has a novel and then a series captured the imagination of an entire generation and even those that follow it. Ofcourse since there is no tale in existence that wasn’t borrowed from reality or history, Dune tells the story of a man transformed into a prophet on a planet that deprives one of everything but the most basest of human elements. On a planet as harsh as the realm of reality, Dune is a story of the exploitation of innocence to win wars and the ability of one man to hold a whole world hostage.
It was written in the sixties, during a time of optimism resulting from cynicism, of a time when Vietnam was coming to an end, the Cold war was beginning and with the OPEC crisis and the advent of cocaine into mainstream culture; it created became a cosmic soup that included all the essential ingredients, such as socialism, fanaticism, nationalism, and liberalism.
Dune became a pop culture phenomenon and entered the cultural lexicon as a book that defined the times while it predicted the culture of the future.
Submitted by Smauginski
I read Dune fully intending not to like it but halfway through the book I realised that what I was reading was amazing and I decided to savor it as I read it.
First some background info:
Dune is set in a futuristic world where space travel is possible and induvidual houses have their own planets. Picture medieval England where each castle is a planet and the everyone has star trek technology.
Unlike Star trek swords are quite popular. This is because when a laser is fired at a person wearing a shield both the guy who fired as well as the guy who wears the shield die. The shields can also stop a sword thrust from penetrating but it can be worked around if the sword comes in at angles and at slower speeds. Computers are used but they are forbidden from crossing a certain level of AI. So humans called Mentats are used who can gather in all the variables of a situation and come up with likely scenarios as to how or why a certain thing happened or what its reprecussions are. The most valuable commodity in the world of Dune is the spice melange. Navigators in their space ships use the spice for travelling. It can also increase the powers of concentration of a person.
Now for the real stuff:
Dune is the only planet that contains spice. No other planet can grow it(Other houses have tried) and as such the person who controls the spice can in effect control the entire Empire. Obviously the Emperor decides who manages Dune. He decides to transfer the adminstration from House Harkonnen (a very evil house) to house Atriedes (a noble house). Paul Atreides is the son of Duke Atriedes. The entire story revolves on Pauls life and his rise to power,
I don't think I should say more. I really think its an amazing book and well worth the read.
Submitted by Anonymous
This is quite possibly the best science fiction series of all time. It is not merely genre fiction, but a deeply philosophical and intellectual experience. The complexity of Frank Herbert's worlds is as intriguing, if not even more so than Tolkien's world of elves and hobbits.
If you are not an avid reader of fiction, this series is very different. Although not a light read it is a worthwhile journey into the human imagination.
Submitted by Pietro
I have read the entire Dune series (prequels and all) and I have got to say that these are the only books that can rival, if not surpass, the Lord of the Rings. Dune is especially impressive because it was written in the fifties when sci-fi was still only a pup. I remember feeling the heat from the desert planet and seeing the blue eyes that come along with spice addiction. This is by far the most inventive series that I have read and is worth the read simply for the delicious characters and environment. These books are not action packed but you don't even notice because the writing is so good and the story so captivating.