DUNE: FRANK HERBERT Sunday 02 October, 2011

Political and religious intrigue a long time ago or in the future or far far away. Don’t let the film put you off.

I have to admit I love the film of this book.  I suspect I am one of the few people who do though.  The director has disowned it.  The producers liked so little what the director had done that they hacked around three hours away from the film.  What is left behind feels like a film that has big lumps of it sitting on a shelf somewhere.  I love it though. I went and saw it at the cinema when it was released.  I’m not sure how because it has a 15 rating and at the time I was seven years old.  My father and my grandmother took me to see it.  I think it must have caused a few nights of scary dreams because this is not science fiction for children.

So what of the book then?  I know that the film has tarnished the book because I have tried to recommend it to people and they respond with “what? From that rubbish film?”.  I say don’t judge a book by it’s film conversion.

This book is a complex and hefty affair. It deals with the power struggles within the great ruling houses of a galactic empire.  It’s packed full of prophecy, betrayal, redemption, revenge and all that other good stuff.

At the beginning (and indeed most of the way through) of the book you may find yourself wondering what the terminology refers to.  If you don’t understand don’t worry.  It is obviously not something that is important to your understanding of the story.  Treat it as something to add colour and texture to the alien world into which you are being steadily immersed.  If you allow that to happen you will quickly be engrossed.

It might not be the most complex take on good and evil but it is immensely enjoyable.

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