I finished reading Frank Herbert’s Dune about a week ago and have been putting off writing about it ever since. It’s not that I didn’t like it – I’ve been avoiding going on record saying that I was not blown away by it.
So there, I’ve said it. I did not think Dune was amazing. I’m sorry to all the die hard sci-fi fans out there, but that’s just how I feel about it.
Let me also go on record to say that I did not dislike it – I didn’t even find it boring. The book, though over 700 pages long is made up of relatively short chapters.
Dune is the first book in the Dune Saga, made up of 6 books. Although a very long book, it only covers a rather short period of time in the lives of the main characters – namely members of House Atreides and House Harkonnen.
Dune covers the period of Paul Atreides’ life before his family moves to Arrakis (aka Dune), til about 3 years later, after Paul had found his true purpose in life, living among the Fremen.
Though the writing style of Dune is simple and straightforward, I found it a bit hard to get into the novel. What bothered me most about the book was how it lacked detailed explanations and descriptions about its world, people, technology, concepts and ideas, almost as if the author is assuming you already have knowledge about everything there is to know about his made-up universe.
It’s as if you opened the book in the middle and started reading a random page without bothering to go back to the beginning and reading the introductory chapters.
However, Frank Herbert compensates his lack of explanations throughout the novel by adding extensive appendices at the end of the novel about religion, politics, language, and other key concepts and ideas. But because this was not really part of the story, I didn’t bother reading any of it.
I know that Dune is HUGE in the sci-fi world, and I found it weird that I had lived so long without having read it, being a fan of sci-fi. But after reading it, I was disappointed in myself for finding it quite disappointing.
Dune (1965) – Frank Herbert
Ace Science Fiction; 794 pages
Personal rating: 2.5/5