Tara Calaby's Reviews > Dune

Dune by Frank Herbert
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bookshelves: science-fiction, fantasy, 100-books

For the first fifty pages of this, I was thinking around a 1.5 star rating, because it was pure exposition about people with confusing names, whom I didn't care about in the slightest. By halfway through, it was sitting around a 3.5 star rating, and I thought it could either go up half a star if the ending was good, or down a star if it wasn't. I think the end result is 3 stars.

On the whole, the writing was quite good, and I liked the ideas surrounding the desert planet and the life of the Fremen. I still didn't care about most of the characters, though, especially Paul, and I felt a lot like the book was three times as long as it needed to be, especially as nothing ends with any kind of finality, presumably because the other Dune books were already planned.

Mostly, though, I struggled with the representation of women in the universe. I know the book was written a while ago, but women in the sixties still had way more autonomy and choices and respect than those in this book. I totally get dystopian futures in which there are pointed depictions of misogynistic societies, but here it's not remotely pointed or commented upon. Women are wives, concubines, mothers and witches and that's it. It's such a backwards picture of the future (emphasised by the use of both medieval and ancient Roman social and political structures) and I really expect more from my science fiction.
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Reading Progress

October 30, 2015 – Started Reading
October 30, 2015 – Shelved
October 30, 2015 –
page 36
5.91% "Pure exposition and strange names so far. I am assuming it gets much much better, given that it's considered a classic."
November 2, 2015 –
page 270
44.33% "Enjoying this a lot now--just needed to get through the first 50 pages of exposition."
November 15, 2015 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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message 1: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca I tried reading the book, but this is one of the few cases where I actually gave up - I found the story interesting, but the characters rather uninteresting, and I got rather annoyed with all the hints of what would happen later on (especially concerning the murder of the Duke, but other stuff later on too). That can be done well, but it was by far too much of it.


Tara Calaby Rebecca wrote: "I tried reading the book, but this is one of the few cases where I actually gave up - I found the story interesting, but the characters rather uninteresting, and I got rather annoyed with all the h..."

Yeah, there is nothing in this book that you don't learn from the hints in the first 100 pages! And then you have another 550-odd pages after that! I don't regret reading it, but it's definitely not something I'd ever read again.


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