While the story is imaginative and interesting, this book is mediocre. I love me a good mystical/scifi/fantasy book (note the usage of the word ‘good’) but this one was subpar in my estimations. Maybe it is because it was written in 1965 and the genre was just developing, or maybe it is because I don’t personally appreciate Frank Herbert’s writing style, but I really struggled to finish this book.
There were many places where I got stuck and had to re-read the page or paragraph because of unclear writing. There were many attempts at imagery that paled in comparison to what I am assuming I was supposed to imagine. The characters are one faceted for the most part. And the writing is repetitive to the point of being distracting, making the book a longer slower read than need be. There were also a lot of basic grammar errors, like “forgetting to put in end quotations to dialogue
The interesting parts of this book are about survivalist culture, agriculture, and resource conservation, but very little good explanation is given. The crop scientist in me almost threw the book across the room when I finally got to the chapter entitled “the ecology” of Dune, and it was actually just a history of male scientists.
Moreover, this book is misogynistic, chauvanist, and heterocentric. The only gay person in the book is an evil 450Lb psychopath who rapes young male slaves. Most of the men have concubines, but each woman is bound to one man.
The dialogue in MANY chapters can be summed up as: “I’m a man!” “No, I’m a man and I say that this other man is not a man to be trusted” “What kind of a man would doubt my manly word?” the protagonist thought to himself…now what would a NOBLE man with formidable social training do? and stood and spoke to the group “now, as a man, I demand we keep the peace and that is what makes me the biggest man of you all” ….this will continue for roughly twenty pages. Intermittently they sing a poorly written song and drink spice coffee.
Overall, I am glad I finished the book because I had always wanted to see what all the fuss was about, and I may at some point read a sequel, but to be honest the only reason I didn’t put it down is because I am in this reading challenge group.