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Book - 1965
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The story of a young prince and his great journey from boy to warrior to ruler to the very dying planet destined to be reborn.
Publisher: Philadelphia : Chilton Books, [1965]
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780593099322
Call Number: SF HERBERT
Characteristics: xxvi, 412 p. : ill. ; 24 cm


From Library Staff

The 1965 Frank Herbert science fiction novel involving the clash of factions contending for control over a bleak desert world.

One of the best-selling and most influential science fiction novels of all time, Dune was written in the 1960s by the Potrero Hill resident and San Francisco Examiner writer Frank Herbert. Set on the desert planet Arrakis, Herbert’s stirring space opera teems with adventure, political intrigue an... Read More »

Set on the desert planet Arrakis, this is the story of the boy Paul Atreides, who would become the mysterious man known as Muad'Dib, avenge the traitorous plot against his noble family, and bring to fruition humankind's most ancient and unattainable dream.

Still topping many top science fiction lists, Frank Herbert’s Dune is a worthy winner of both the Hugo award and the first ever Nebula award. Dune is an action-packed adventure that is gripping from start to finish with noble heroes, vile villains, and a setting that still inspires imaginations a... Read More »

First of 6 in the Dune Chronicles. 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 Atreide... Read More »

From the critics

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Apr 27, 2021

Fully agree with commenter "freedomyeahright" below and their recommendations: by Sci-Fi standards, Dune is an atrocious novel and Herbert is a truly submediocre writer -- on all levels.
The Cassic of Classics in Future Fiction would be Iain Banks' Culture series, especially "Player of Games" --- outstanding on all levels!
Dune may appeal to the truly lowbrows, but . . .

Apr 08, 2021

This book has been my favorite one in the science fiction genre. What makes this book and the Dune chronicles so interesting and unique is the amount of sheer detail the author puts into creating the dune universe and its characters. Everything from the ecology, politics, and economy of the galaxy that is presented in dune to the various characters, their histories and ideologies all combine into one of the greatest and bestselling epics science fiction has ever known. I would recommend this book to any who want to immerse themselves in a truly unique and supremely thought out universe that incorporates every aspect of a life into one powerful and insightful story. 5/5 stars
@Galaxy_Read of the Hamilton Public Library's Teen Review Board

4.5/5. Dune is a 1965 science fiction novel by American author Frank Herbert and it has become a staple series in the genre. It won the Nebula Award for Best Novel. This book laid the foundation on which Herbert has built his greatest series and one that would outlive him. Dune developed a flesh out universe with world building only rivaled by that of J.R.R Tolkien. The book was created by a true master of the genre. Dune deals with political, economic, sociological, biological, cultural and dynastic themes, Herbert has set a science fiction precedence that is rarely met. When first opening the novel, it seems like it will be an impossible read. On the first page alone there are so many universe-specific terms that the virgin reader will not understand (they are thus defined in the back of the book). But after getting a grasp on the main factions of the novel and their goals, everything falls into place and Dune takes you on a ride like no other. The characters are developed just as much as the lore of the universe, making the reader able to easily relate to their plight, engrossing you in the novel. So many sci-fi “tropes” we see today were created in this novel. I would recommend it to everyone.
@Joaquin of the Hamilton Public Library Teen Review Board

Antaeus Mar 24, 2021

Not many novels deserve five stars but this one is special. I read the first three books in a weekend. This is Science Fiction, but focusing more on the sociology/psychology/spirituality of hits characters and telling a classic hero's journey story with such a rich backdrop of culture and intrigue that it seems more like history.

Mar 17, 2021

DUNE’S a book that appears scary, but for a moderately unused exposition peruser by choice, it wasn’t that troublesome. It mesmerizes you right absent, rapidly letting you ended up familiar with the distinctive associations and slang utilized. The middle of the story is Paul Artiness, utilizing him as a central point the peruser interatomic with wealthy characters, assorted planets, and intelligent social orders of the Hill universe. Topics of religion and debasement are sewn inside each viewpoint of the story-line. For illustration, Paul, getting to be this Savior figure battling for supreme control. The chemical “Spice” could be an awesome McGuffin taking after oil that's the draw for numerous of the key players making it an awesome Center Eastern moral story. The complaints stem from how there are as well numerous characters/plot-lines to take after, but each one in spite of the fact that is intriguing in its possess ways. From the puzzling Bene-Gesserit Woman Jessica to the horrifying adversary Noble Harkonen. Whereas the story continues the plots interweave and the character.

SAPL_Teens Feb 26, 2021

DUNE’S a book that seems intimidating, but for a relatively new prose reader by choice, it wasn’t that difficult. It mesmerises you right away, quickly letting you become acquainted with the different organisations and slang used. The centre of the story is Paul Atreides, using him as a focal point the reader interacts with rich characters, diverse planets, and reflective societies of the DUNE universe. Themes of religion and corruption are sewn within each aspect of the story-line. For example, Paul, becoming this Messiah figure fighting for absolute control. The chemical “Spice” is a terrific mcguffin resembling oil that is the draw for many of the key players making it a great Middle Eastern allegory. The complaints stem from how there are too many characters/plot-lines to follow, but each one though is fascinating in its own ways. From the mysterious Bene-Gesserit Lady Jessica to the appalling antagonist Baron Harkonen. While the story proceeds the plots intertwine and the character’s relationships to boot. The length was just right, getting a sense of everything and have a climatic/satisfying end without having to read the many future instalments. A masterpiece of sci-fi that everyone should take the time to read. 5/5 stars - Teigan, 18, SAPL Read It & Review Contributor

Dec 29, 2020

Dune is a product of its time, with some ideas that seem a little backward when reading it more than a half century after it was published (I'm thinking primarily gender roles). But it is still a thrilling book to read. There were some things I wasn't fond of in the writing, especially Herbert constantly revealing the inner monologue of every character, but fundamentally, this is just a great story. The plot is fun. It has interesting twists, long lost reunions, intrigue, double crossings, etc... all great and exciting storytelling. It's a page turner.

Dec 13, 2020

The galactic Emperor had a hidden agenda when he ordered House Atreides to move to the Arrakis, replacing House Harkonnen as the planet's ruling family. Arrakis is a desolate wasteland covered almost entirely in desert, earning it the nickname "Dune"; but Arrakis is the only source of the spice melange - the most valuable substance in the universe.
Duke Leto Atreides's teenage son Paul is beginning to manifest mystical powers that will aid him in the coming battles and betrayals and in his fight for survival on a hostile planet.

Frank Herbert's classic novel "Dune" is the most complex science fiction novel I have read. In addition to an adventure story and a coming-of-age novel, the book includes insights into politics, sociology, ecology, economics, religion, philosophy, and language. Nearly every dialogue is layered with multiple meanings and nearly every action is a potential betrayal.

Herbert does an amazing job building the world of Arrakis and its people.

Among the creations of the book are:

-Sand Worms - giant tubular creatures that live beneath the surface of the desert sand, as sea dragons might swim in the ocean, breaching the surface from time to time to wreak havoc on protection of the spice.

-The Bene Gesserit - a cultlike group with impressive mental powers, who strive to produce a superhuman via their secret breeding program.

-The Fremen - a mysterious nomadic race that live in the deserts of Dune and have a special relationship with the sand worms.

-Mentats - humans with the ability to think like computers

Although "Dune" is set centuries in the future, technology has not advanced at the rate one would expect. Advancements have been stunted by humanity's distrust of artificial intelligence and a war fought centuries earlier. Things like interplanetary travel have been made possible by the powers of the Bene Gesserit and the Mentats and the mind-expanding abilities of melange.

The local water scarcity, the global spice monopoly, and the struggle for control between powerful factions serve as a metaphor for similar constrained resources and conflicts on the Earth of today and the effect on global politics. The vast sand oceans and the Fremen people are not far removed from the 20th and 21st century Middle East.

Through it all is Paul - son of a Duke and gifted with great powers that lead others to perceive him as a Messiah. How he uses those powers defines him and defines the power structure of the galaxy.

This was my third reading of this novel, which I first discovered in my late 20s. After all these years, it still holds my interest.

sjpl_rebekah Nov 10, 2020

Well if Lonesome Dove is my Western genre comparison to A Game of Thrones, Dune is my science fiction comparison. It’s a long epic about shifting allegiances, dynamic power plays, violence, and unexpected deaths. Admittedly this book moved up my TBR list because of the upcoming film adaptation starring my boy Jason Momoa as Duncan Idaho. I haven’t watched any other film adaptations, so I look forward to seeing how this story plays out on the big screen.

Aside from that, this book confirmed a suspicion about myself that I have theorized about but not really tested…hardcore science fiction and/or space operas are not really my jam. My lukewarm feelings about both The Left Hand of Darkness and this book have confirmed it. Of course this isn’t to say that I will never again delve into this literary realm…it’s just that it seems I prefer my science fiction to have a little more fantasy woven into it.

I was not a huge fan of Herbert’s writing style, but I do have to give him credit for his world building skills. The Appendices at the end of the book were helpful because there are many characters, planets, and legends to keep track of. I recommend glancing through it periodically as you read the book for clarity and context.

Oct 12, 2020

I will probably get a lot of hate for this, but Dune is NOT a well written book by modern Sci-fi standards (fiction 101 plot, pacing, narrative stuff...).

There are examples of all of the following items in the book, which would prevent any modern fiction from being considered good, let alone amazing.

1. Illogical character motivations/actions, which occur only to artificially carry the plot forward
2. Many overpowered/completely un-relateable characters
3. Uneven pacing, especially during dramatic/action sequences (making some sections downright boring or ridiculous to read)
4. Overlong philosophical exposition, often pretentious in nature
5. Lack of tension as heroes are rarely under real threat

Defenders of the book say that Dune is a book of ideas, not plot. Some also warn to not expect hero/anti-hero tropes. However, if I wanted a story of ideas that "subvert expectation" I'd almost rather watch Disney Star Wars (yes, parts of Dune are that bad once you get over hype, in the same way the recent Star Wars films were bad, but hyped).

As alternatives to Dune: for classic (50+ year-old) sci-fi, I recommend Asimov's Foundation novels. For a slightly more modern sci-fi with fantasy elements, I recommend the Hyperion Cantos series by Dan Simmons. Like Dune, these works also deal with of the direction of human society as it pertains to futuristic government, religion, and technology, but are executed far better than Dune.

In my mind, the book is living off its hype and impact on the sci-fi genre. It is getting a second wind from the upcoming 2020/21 movie. Some of the ideas are great (the spice, the feudal balance of power), but the story is poorly written.

Overall, would NOT recommend...try for yourself at your own risk.

Oct 11, 2020

What is going on with those soap opera sci-fi characters on this book ?! Everything else is perfect; lady Jessica cool powers , sandworms , mentat abilities, imperial politics, the mystery of the freeman , the rough landscape of Arrakis even stillsuits are interesting or the ships and I loved the culture aspect of the planets. Then ,halfway through the book, you get pages after pages of boring characters that I couldn’t care less about .

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Add a Quote
Jul 13, 2019

"Think on it, Chani: that princess will have the name, yet she'll live as less than a concubine - never to know a moment of tenderness from the man to whom she's bound. While we, Chani, we who carry the name of concubine - history will call is wives." -Jessica

Jul 13, 2019

"All paths lead into darkness." -Paul Atreides

Jul 13, 2019

GURNEY: "They said you were dead."
PAUL: "And it seemed the best protection to let them think so."

Jul 13, 2019

"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." -Princess Irulan

Jul 13, 2019

"The concept of progress acts as a protective mechanism to shield us from the terrors of the future." - Princess Irulan

Jul 13, 2019

"Law is the ultimate science. Thus it reads above the Emperor's door. I propose to show him law." -Paul Atreides

Jul 11, 2018

"Spices are addictive"

Apr 07, 2017

"The tooth. Duke Leto Atreides. You will remember the tooth."

ellensix Oct 09, 2015

The mystery of life isn't a problem to solve, but a reality to experience."
—Frank Herbert, Dune

Jul 27, 2015

"Fear is the mind killer."

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Add Age Suitability
Oct 13, 2020

freedomyeahright thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

Dec 30, 2019

brian_1028 thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over

Jul 13, 2019

Chinderixx thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over

Sep 29, 2018

Fa613 thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over

Jun 25, 2008

noob123 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages


Add a Summary
Apr 17, 2020

Paul Atreides, the heir to house Atreides, flees to the uncivilized but resource rich planet of Arrakis after his home is usurped by the conspiring house of Harkonnen. Paul is taken in by the natives of Arrakis, the Fremen, along with his pregnant mother, where he is integrated into their secretive society and spiritual orders. Living among the Fremen awakens a new sense of self and identity in the young man, who vows to glorify his family once more while fighting for the freedom and prosperity that the Fremen used to have before the great intergalactic houses colonized their home planet to lay claim to the addictive and powerful spice trade.

Jul 13, 2019


Jun 28, 2017

Completely well thought out, involved and highly believable world. This book is one of the best science fiction books I have ever read, and I will definitely be reading it again someday.


Add Notices
Jul 13, 2019

Coarse Language: Mild Language

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