Thursday, September 15, 2016

Review: Dune by Frank Herbert

Dune by Frank Herbert
Published 1999 by Ace (first published December 1st 1965)
Hardcover, 517 pages

On Goodreads, I set the "Date finished this book" as "Date I gave up on this book" because I had a hard time getting into it and following everything. Reading sci-fi is just not my thing, but I persevered and somehow made much more progress with this book than I did with The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch. That book is a post for another day if I could ever get into it again.

With Dune, I made a point of reading as much as I could, which was 83 pages out of 517, and still attend the discussion tonight with Vermont Books 'n' Brews at Cattails Restaurant in Brandon, VT. Generally speaking, I felt like there are way too many details to remember for me to be engrossed in it early enough to stick with the story. Being a stubborn reader though, I gave it a chance and took the advice of the person who recommended it and kept reading. He pointed out that the first time he read it he struggled for the first 100 pages or so, but then cruised to the end.

Because of Herbert's writing style, I could tell right away and understand why it's such a classic, especially in the sci-fi genre. That helped a little bit in keeping me interested - that and it's subtle similarities to Star Wars, which made me wonder if George Lucas drew some inspiration from Herbert's stories. Although I picked up right away that there were some dated material (like blatant sexism and technological advances of the time), I was able to recognize why Frank Herbert has been hailed a classic sci-fi author and why so many people who enjoy sci-fi enjoy his writing.

That said, I'm not sure that I'll be able to ever finish the book since it was such a struggle for me to even get into. I feel comfortable being able to say no to this one and be okay with not finishing it, and therefore I am not going to rate this book because it would be an unfair subjective rating of something I highly dislike. Certain genres are not for everyone.

Rating: Abandoned (0 out of 5 on Goodreads)

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