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Dune (Dune #1)

4.17  ·  Rating Details  ·  463,901 Ratings  ·  11,125 Reviews
Set in the far future amidst a sprawling feudal interstellar empire where planetary dynasties are controlled by noble houses that owe an allegiance to the imperial House Corrino, Dune tells the story of young Paul Atreides (the heir apparent to Duke Leto Atreides and heir of House Atreides) as he and his family accept control of the desert planet Arrakis, the only source o ...more
Paperback, 604 pages
Published June 1st 2006 by Hodder & Stoughton (first published June 1st 1965)
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Nasos Delveroudis - (warning, wall of text incoming)

Short answer: No, it's not necessary to read the rest of the series. Dune can be treated as a standalone book and…more
- (warning, wall of text incoming)

Short answer: No, it's not necessary to read the rest of the series. Dune can be treated as a standalone book and story.

But why would you want to do that? You'll miss most of the fun, as some of the subsequent books are arguably better (especially God Emperor of Dune which, in my opinion, is probably the best and deepest sci-fi work of all time by far). Moreover the saga of Dune by no means ends with that #1 book, as only in the second volume there are huge plot twists and the story develops drastically taking a whole new turn (quite unexpected too).

Long answer: The Dune saga practically consists of two parts. The first six books were written by Frank Herbert in the period between 1965 and 1985. These are::

1) Dune (1965)
2) Dune Messiah (1969)
3) Children of Dune (1976)
4) God Emperor of Dune (1981) (like I said, arguably the best book of its genre)
5) Heretics of Dune (1984)
6) Chapterhouse: Dune (1985)

One may read them in this exact order, as they're not only sorted by publishing date but it's also how the epic unfolds in chronological order. Unfortunately Frank left his work unfinished and the story incomplete, because he passed away before he had the chance to finish the seventh book.

But his legacy lived on and it was his son Brian Herbert who resumed the Dune series, in collaboration with Kevin Anderson (widely known for contributing to the Star Wars universe by writing lots of original stories, especially "The Jedi Academy Trilogy").

Not only that but just after they'd started writing the first few books of the "modern" Dune era, they discovered long lost and forgotten material by late Frank, sealed for 15 odd years in a bank locker. It turned out these notes were actually rough guidelines about the legendary Dune 7, the missing part of the saga, the one which would complete the series, which no one had expected to see.

Brian and Kevin have released 12 books so far (but we should be expecting more to come), which I'll cite below. They are separated by thematic context, which is required as most have been written in trilogy form and need to be read in this particular order:

--- Prelude to Dune series (it's about a period beginning about 35 years before the events of the original Dune and ending about 15 years before them):

1. House Atreides (1999)
2. House Harkonnen (2000)
3. House Corrino (2001)

--- Legends of Dune series (refers to the old galaxy-wide war between humankind and machines, about 10 thousand years before Dune, when the foundations of the saga were actually built):

4. The Butlerian Jihad (2002)
5. The Machine Crusade (2003)
6. The Battle of Corrin (2004)

- Dune 7 (as a matter of fact it's an untitled series but it's practically Dune 7, split in two parts and it obviously resumes the story from where Frank Herbert left it in distant 1985):

7. Hunters of Dune (2006)
8. Sandworms of Dune (2007)

--- Heroes of Dune series (it's about a period starting around 15 years before Dune until its very beginning):

9. Paul of Dune (2008)
10. The Winds of Dune (2009)

--- Great Schools of Dune series (OK, I'll have to admit I haven't read these two yet, so I haven't got the slightest idea what they're about! Hopefully I'll find out soon enough)

11. Sisterhood of Dune (2012)
12. Mentats of Dune (2014)

The emerging question is in which order does one have to read all these books (the usual and everlasting dilemma of non-linear/multi-volume series such as the Lord of the Rings/Hobbit/Silmarillion, Ender's Saga etc). Do we have to follow the order in which they were written/published or the chronological order in which the story develops? Do we need to first read Dune (1965) or perhaps go with the Butlerian Jihad (2002) which, after all, takes place 10 thousand years earlier?

My suggestion is to read them exactly in the order in which they were presented above. I think it'd be a sin (really) if your first impression about Dune were from the books of Brian Herbert and not from Frank's.

One could also ponder if all these books are really worth it, all 18 of them. Perhaps some might actually be skipped altogether? I'd say the first twelve of them (from Dune-1965 to The Battle of Corrin-2004) are really a must read. Obviously the first six books (by Frank) are MUCH deeper but if you could make some concessions, Brian's volumes are pretty good themselves. You only need to not expect the same level of depth and lower your requirements. They'll turn out to be pretty enjoyable.

However I believe that beginning from Hunters of Dune, the story takes a somewhat Star Wars-ish turn and deviates from Frank's original spirit (eg. instead of the usual layered plots within plots within plots with increasingly difficult to grasp notions, you're starting to read more and more about space fights and lasers and the like).

All in all, I hope you'll enjoy the Dune Chronicles!(less)
Avaminn F'nett Appropriate, yes. But I don't think most 12 year-olds would find it that interesting. Smart 12 year-olds who like fantasy and sci-fi books would like…moreAppropriate, yes. But I don't think most 12 year-olds would find it that interesting. Smart 12 year-olds who like fantasy and sci-fi books would like it, though.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Manny
There's a characteristically witty essay by Borges about a man who rewrites Don Quixote, many centuries after Cervantes. He publishes a novel with the same title, containing the same words in the same order. But, as Borges shows you, the different cultural context means it's a completely new book! What was once trite and commonplace is now daring and new, and vice versa. It just happens to look like Cervantes's masterpiece.

Similarly, imagine the man who was brave or stupid enough to rewrite Dune
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John Wiswell
Jul 30, 2013 John Wiswell rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Science fiction readers, fantasy readers, speculative fiction readers
No one should argue the importance Dune. It laid the foundations for a great deal of the themes and constructs in modern science fiction. Frank Herbert was as important to the genre as Isaac Asimov and Arthur Clarke. Unfortunately, just like them, he's quite dated, and his books can be a labor to read. One thing he maintained from old science fiction was prim and scientific dialogue that no one would ever actually speak. I've known many scientists, and they don't talk like this. You're not going ...more
Rajat Ubhaykar
In my head, the purpose of this review is very clear. It is to convince YOU to read this book. Yes, you! Waste time no more. Go grab a copy.

Machiavellian intrigue, mythology, religion, politics, imperialism, environmentalism, the nature of power. All this set in a mind-boggling, frighteningly original world which Herbert ominously terms as an "effort at prediction". Dune had me hooked!

First impression

The very first stirring I felt upon opening the yellowed pages of Dune was that of stumbling upo
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J.G. Keely
People often forget that this series is what innovated our modern concept of science fiction (up until Neuromancer and The Martix, at least). Dune took the Space Opera and asked if it might be more than spandex, dildo-shaped rockets, and scantily-clad green women. Herbert created a vast and complex system of ancient spatial politics and peoples, then set them at one another's throats over land, money, and drugs.

Dune is often said to relate to Sci Fi in the same way that Tolkien relates to Fantas
...more
Bookworm Sean
I could never give Dune five stars because I really struggled to get into the novel in the beginning. It has taken me almost two months to read. This, for me, is a very long time to spend on a book. It took me so long to read because I found the writing style incredibly frustrating. I had to read whole chapters again so I could get the gist of the plot. This was more so in the beginning, which I found particularly hard to read because of the author’s way of shifting between the thoughts of multi ...more
Matt
Apr 16, 2015 Matt rated it it was amazing
Like most of my five star books, I’ve read Dune multiple times. In fact, I’d say that what makes a book more than just enjoyable and instead truly amazing is that you want to read it more than once and are rewarded for doing so. I’ve probably read Dune six times, and I’ve never gotten tired of it but my understanding of the work has increased over time.

To begin with, the first time I read Dune, I got about three pages into it, realized I didn’t understand a thing and that I was hopelessly confus
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Terry
Is it space opera? Is it political commentary? Is it philosophical exploration? Is it fantasy? _Dune_ is all of these things and possibly more. One thing I do know: it's a kick-ass read!

I've loved this book since I first plunged into it's mightily constructed, weird and obscure world. Of course it's hailed as a classic, and I am one of those that agrees. The sheer magnitude of Herbert's invention, his monumental world-building tied with an exciting story of betrayal, survival, rebellion and ulti
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Lyn
Jan 08, 2016 Lyn rated it it was amazing
Dune.

No other single syllable means as much to the science fiction genre, a single word that conjures images of sandworms, spice wars, great battles between rival dynastic families and a massively detailed and intricately crafted universe. No wonder this is widely regarded as not just a Science Fiction masterpiece, but a literary achievement as well.

Like a study of Shakespeare, the reader finds that this is an archetype upon which many influences and imitators have based their works. The comple
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Markus
Buddy re-read with Athena!

“To begin your study of the life of Muad'Dib, then, take care that you first place him in his time: born in the 57th year of the Padishah Emperor, Shaddam IV. And take the most special care that you locate Muad'Dib in his place: the planet Arrakis. Do not be deceived by the fact that he was born on Caladan and lived his first fifteen years there. Arrakis, the planet known as Dune, is forever his place.”

Thus begins one of the greatest novels ever written.

About ten years
...more
Carol.
Dec 17, 2015 Carol. rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: sci-fi fans
I blame the movie.

I was an avid but novice fantasy and sci-fi reader in 1984 when David Lynch’s Dune rolled out as a big-budget adaptation of the 1962 classic book. It was an artistic and box-office failure with Roger Ebert calling it “a real mess, an incomprehensible, ugly, unstructured, pointless excursion.” Numerous references were made to its excessive length, particularly a tv edition that was over 3 hours long. I never did pick up the classic sci-fi book, assuming the commentary heard abou
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Keith Mukai
Jul 29, 2007 Keith Mukai rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I guess I'm one of the few that bridge the gap between the Pride and Prejudice camp and the Dune camp. I loved both.

Dune isn't a light, enjoyable read. At times it reads more like excerpts from geology, ecology, zoology, sociology, pscyhology, and political textbooks. The characters are more like mega-archetypes than real human beings.

The appeal of Dune is peculiar. In order to enjoy Dune you have to enjoy complexity. All authors create little worlds in their stories but Herbert created a world.
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Stuart
Dune: The greatest SF novel of all time, never to be matched by later sequels (Review of 1965 Novel, 1984 David Lynch Film, 2000 Sci-Fi Channel Miniseries, and 2013 Jodorowsky documentary)
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature
What more can be said about Frank Herbert’s 1965 masterpiece? This massive epic of political intrigue, messianic heroes, vile villains, invincible desert fighters, telepathic witches, sandworms and spice, guild pilots who fold space, and a relentless action-packed narrativ
...more
Otis Chandler
May 13, 2013 Otis Chandler rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, sci-fi
When people ask me what my favorite book is, Dune is always my answer. Words cannot even do justice to what an epic tale this is. We learn about spirituality, human nature, politics, religion, and the making of a hero.

I loved the spiritual aspects of the book the best. The philosophies and practices and Pranu Bindu training of the Bene Gesserit that Paul learns and builds upon. The Bene Gesserit believe in a training regiment that results in a superior human being - one with every sense as refin
...more
Christopher Paolini
Mar 21, 2016 Christopher Paolini rated it it was amazing
Dune is one of the best examples of the hero’s journey in fiction. Most authors, myself included, need more than one book in order to tell an epic coming-of-age story. Herbert did it in one while also creating a unique and interesting setting. Part of his genius as an author was his ability to imply far more about his world than he actually showed. As a result, Dune feels as if it was written by an inhabitant of Herbert’s universe; no small achievement.

As with Anna Karenina, Dune goes beyond the
...more
Alexa
Aug 11, 2014 Alexa rated it liked it
Shelves: scifi
Welcome to Unpopular Review Time! Where I go against what almost everyone else says about a book.

Before we start, please do not be fooled by the three star rating. Even if I didn't like really like the book, I have to acknowledge there are reasons why Dune is a cornerstone of the Sci Fi genre.

Now, let's talk about the important stuff.

This is a masterpiece of world building.

We get a new planet, and while it's obvious that Herbert based his desert planet on real sights and cultures, it's still aw
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j
DBR to follow, at Ceridwen's request. She must have used one of her Bene Gesserit tricks on me.

***
Dune. Dune is a fascinating book. A classic of science-fiction, it plays equally as fantasy and allegory. It is deeply textured, richly layered. And if you want to read a sensible review of it, I'd go read, say, Cedriwen's. This one is going to be full of silliness.

Arrakis. The desert planet. Home to spice and sandworms. Dune. You know, I went to the desert once. The Sahara Desert. It looked like th
...more
Brad
Oct 02, 2015 Brad rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
This is a phenomenal classic of literature.

It's not just science fiction. It transcends science fiction, as a fascinating discussion of free-will versus inevitability. Can the Jihad be denied? Can Paul ever really avoid his own death, despite seeing every time-line play out with him as the butt of every cosmic joke? Can even cruelty or mercy even remain comprehensible after such knowledge?

Yes, I think this work outdoes Nietzsche. It certainly does a great job of making us care about the question
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Jan
Familiar yet strange, realistic yet fantastic, prosaic yet poetic, crystal clear yet mysterious, stiff yet graceful, cold yet passionate, detailed yet abstract, rational yet delirious, disciplined yet boundless, conservative yet progressive, obsessive yet sublime – aaah, I think the spice melange is starting to kick in...
Denisse
Jan 25, 2016 Denisse rated it really liked it
4.5 If a simple 2015-YA-romantic book can be read and understand differently depending on your age, education or religion, imagine how differently a book as complex and incredibly well crafted as Dune can be understood. Slow introduction, heavy politics, long descriptions, complex dialog, smart exposition, critic to the real world; Dune is a classic, my friends. An obvious inspiration for others, with a fascinating fictional science. The author takes his time for everything, and because of that, ...more
Edward Lorn
Mar 01, 2016 Edward Lorn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone, at least once.
Recommended to Edward by: Athena Shardbearer
Shelves: paperbacks
After 21 days, I am back from Arrakis. I have sand crammed into every orifice, and my stillsuit smells of three-week-old swampy man ass. Think papermill with a side of skunk ape and we'll be on the same page. Yummy. If I never see another beach in my life, it'll be too goddamn soon.

Bet you think that means I disliked this book, huh? Well, probably not, because you saw my rating, but whatever. Anyfloop, I dug the shit out of this book, and my opening comments are why. I was utterly transported t
...more
Ted
May 25, 2016 Ted rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in the greatest SF classics
With the Lady Jessica and Arrakis, the Bene Gesserit system of sowing implant-legends through the Missionaria Protectiva came to its full fruition … And it is generally accepted now that her latent abilities were grossly underestimated
- From “Analysis: The Arrakeen Crisis” by the Princess Irulan


Last year was the 50th anniversary of Frank Herbert’s Dune., which was published by Chilton in 1965. (view spoiler)
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Liz* Fashionably Late
BR with my Emma's Party friends (:
-----------------------

Liz against the world's rating: 3.9 Stars

Look at me, here I am reading Hugo's winner Dune 50 years after its publication and living to tell the tale. Dune is, without doubt, a groundbreaking story with a complex and enthralling universe. The concept of Dune is exhilarating: sandworms, a messiah, the Fremen and their spice.

The actual reading, however, is a slightly less perfect experience.

description

Princess Irulan states from the beginning that pr
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Evgeny
Jun 03, 2014 Evgeny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
This is a classic science fiction book with both movies and miniseries adaptations, so I assume the majority of the people are familiar with the plot which means I will be a little less careful about giving spoilers than usual.

In the distant future the humanity is ruled by an intergalactic feudal Empire - is absolute monarchy the best the humanity could come up with after all its history? Anyway, Duke Leto Atreides accepts control of a desert planet called Arrakis (aka Dune) which also happened
...more
Katie
Apr 09, 2007 Katie rated it it was ok
I've loved science fiction my whole life, but I was finally told that I couldn't call myself a SF fan if I hadn't read Dune. So I read it. I know Dune is worshipped as a paragon of groundbreaking SF, I can witness and acknowledge Herbert's genius, and I can understand that when it was written it was certainly seminal, but I still don't think much of it.

Aside from Herbert's horribly annoying use of 3rd-person-omnipotent viewpoint, he's just not a good writer. For clarification: he's a fantastic s
...more
Apatt
Jul 16, 2014 Apatt rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Does the world need another Dune review? I very much doubt it needs mine but that never stopped me before, saturation be damned!

Dune in and of itself, in isolation from the rest of the numerous other Dune books, is by general consensus the greatest sci-fi novel of all time. You may not agree, and one book can not please everybody but statistically Dune comes closest to achieving just this. Witness how often you see it at or near the top of all-time best sf books lists.

I never read Dune with the
...more
Penny
Top 10 favourite book of all time! I'm having a good run of books from that point of view at the moment.

Told in the voice of an omniscient narrator the plot unfolds with practised ease around the cast. I'm not used to this style of narration and found it to be very powerful. Knowing the private thoughts and reactions of relevant characters in certain scenes was often vastly more revealing than anything else could have been.

The world building was simply brilliant. The universe with it's politics
...more
Warwick


Dune is one of those sci-fi novels where you get hit by a stream of dense, exotic-sounding coinages and no explanations about where we are or what's happening. It reads like there was a prologue which was removed before publication. Our hero, Paul Atreides, is also known as Muad'dib, and having endured the gom jabbar may be the Kwisatz Haderach foretold by the Bene Geserrit as well as the Lisan al-Gaib predicted by the ijaz of the Fremen, otherwise known as Usul in his home sietch…etc.

The exposi
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Szplug
Oct 05, 2011 Szplug rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As kids, my older brother was a Dune guy, whereas I bowed at the altar of John Ronald Reuel—and neither of us could ever bring ourselves to meet fully in the other's territory. I have tried Frank Herbert's renowned series several times now but have yet to make it further than Dune Messiah, the succinct, but inferior, follow-up to his smash-hit series opener. Everything that constitutes this curiously prescient science-fiction champion appeals to me: an alluringly thoughtful and flush aeon-spanni ...more
Darth J
Sep 11, 2015 Darth J marked it as to-read
I keep meaning to read this.
Stephen
6.0 stars. On my list of All Time Favorite Novels. Arguably the greatest Science Fiction novel ever written and certainly a standard by which other works are judged. The best way I can think of to describe the world and characters created by Frank Herbert in his Dune series is "staggering." HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!!!

Winner: Hugo Award for Best Novel
Winner: Nebula Award Best Novel
Listed #1 of Locus Poll of All Time Greatest SF Novels
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  • The Machine Crusade (Legends of Dune, #2)
  • The Left Hand of Darkness
  • Foundation and Empire (Foundation, #2)
  • Ringworld (Ringworld, #1)
  • Judas Unchained
  • Lord of Light
  • Endymion (Hyperion Cantos #3)
  • The Claw of the Conciliator (The Book of the New Sun #2)
  • The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick, Volume 4: The Minority Report
  • Rite of Passage
  • Komarr (Vorkosigan Saga, #11)
  • The Uplift War (The Uplift Saga, #3)
  • Warchild (Warchild, #1)
  • Century Rain
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Frank Herbert was a critically acclaimed and commercially successful American science fiction author.

He is best known for the novel Dune and its five sequels. The Dune saga, set in the distant future and taking place over millennia, dealt with themes such as human survival and evolution, ecology, and the intersection of religion, politics, and power, and is widely considered to be among the classi
...more
More about Frank Herbert...

Other Books in the Series

Dune (8 books)
  • Dune Messiah (Dune Chronicles, #2)
  • Children of Dune (Dune Chronicles, #3)
  • God Emperor of Dune (Dune Chronicles, #4)
  • Heretics of Dune (Dune Chronicles, #5)
  • Chapterhouse: Dune (Dune Chronicles, #6)
  • Hunters of Dune (Dune Chronicles, #7)
  • Sandworms of Dune (Dune Chronicles, #8)

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“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” 6796 likes
“Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic.” 775 likes
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