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Gregory

Glendale, CA, USA

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  • Dune: The Butlerian Jihad

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Brian Herbert, Kevin J. Anderson
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (902)
    Performance
    (334)
    Story
    (334)

    Frank Herbert's Dune is one of the grandest epics in the annals of imaginative literature. Now Herbert's son, Brian, working with Kevin J. Anderson and using Frank Herbert's own notes, reveals a pivotal epoch in the history of the Dune universe: the Butlerian Jihad, the war that was fought ten thousand years before the events of Dune - the war in which humans wrested their freedom from "thinking machines."

    Brian says: "enoyed premise but not execution"
    "Amusing in a campy bad sort-of way!"
    Overall

    About the book: This is a prequel written by Frank Herbert's son and another author. Rather than an apocryphal and an exciting extension, it is mediocre science fiction. None of the mystery of the various competing factions of the original series is present, although it attempts to explain the origination of the ban on computers, the long standing hatrid between dynastic houses, of the development of the spacing guild, and everything else in the original book, except for the Emperor. Much of the promised explanations are done as an afterthought, whereas other things tediously repeated over and over and over again. Most of the book is about man vs. machine--a longer and dumbed-down Eric Asimov. Characters are two dimensional and completely predictable. Women are ravishingly beautiful or stunted and deformed. Men are portly and red-faced politicians or tall and handsome. However, there is one loveable drug addict and another character who reminded me of my pompous dissertation advisor--I liked them.

    There is one love scene in the book which was embarassing to listen to (alone): I winced. It involved a hunt for deadly wild charging boars, a secluded hot spring, and much ripping of each other's clothes, between the two most important young people of the universe. Think dumbed-down Jackie Collins in space.

    The format includes the made up quotes of the original book, but these are really, really bad, and don't seem to have any relationship to the text.

    Never-the-less, it is a Dune book, so I listened to the entire thing, and I didn't feel cheated; esp. on a per-word basis.

    The Production: It is narrated by a single reader. He attempts to do a few accents and voices, but they are really, really bad. But he had to talk a long time. Some of the voices (esp. of the robots) will make you laugh.

    Conclusion: Get it if you are a real Dune buff. I ended up enjoying it because it is so much worse than the real thing that it is funny.

    9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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