Book Review: Dune by Frank Herbert
Dune is one of those books that everyone, even non-sci-fi fans, are somewhat familiar with. If you haven’t read the book, then you have seen the movie. I vaguely remember seeing the 1984 movie, but never read the book, so I figured I would take the opportunity when I saw it come through Audible.com‘s new releases.
And what a great book. What really impressed me wasn’t the creativity of the story (although the story is amazing), it was the characters. I suppose that for me is the mark of a good author. The characters that are created from the mind of the author make the story a real story. If it’s just about the fantasy or action or mystery, it’s not really a story to me. It’s merely entertainment. But in order to be moved by a story and to be enthralled in what happens next, you have to have good characters.
Frank Herbert does a masterful job in developing the characters. Herbert morphs Paul Atreides from a boy and son of a duke, into a savior and messianic figure. The impressive parts of the character are when you are shocked at how he reacts to the surrounding people (usually his mother, the Lady Jessica). That’s when you know the author has created a good character. When the character does something that surprises you, but after thinking about it, you realize that it is exactly inline with that character’s personality.
The fantasy and sci-fi in this book are amazing as well. From the worms and the Fremen who ride them, the suspensors that keep the Baron Harkonnen from collapsing under his own weight, this book is a masterpiece.
An incredibly good read, even for the non-sci-fi reader.