A stunning blend of adventure and mysticism, environmentalism and politics, Dune won the first Nebula Award, shared the Hugo Award, and formed the basis of what is undoubtedly the grandest epic in science fiction.
Frank Herbert's death in 1986 was a tragic loss, yet the astounding legacy of his visionary fiction will live forever.
©1965 Frank Herbert; (P)2007 Audio Renaissance, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers LLC
Nebula Award winner, Best Novel, 1965
Hugo Award winner, Best Novel, 1966
"Unique...I know nothing comparable to it except Lord of the Rings." (Arthur C. Clarke)
"One of the monuments of modern science fiction." (Chicago Tribune)
"Powerful, convincing, and most ingenious." (Robert A. Heinlein)
I read the preludes written by Frank Herberts son years ago and loved them, but then had trouble trying to read this one as I thought I was kind of tired with the story concept. Not so, Dune has a unique and beautiful premise and storyline and I am so glad to have finally read it. This version is masterful, told by a full cast, it is way better than the movie versions. I certainly recommend this audiobook.
Is it Heresy to say that Dune is actually not very good?
Well, it's not.
It's overwrought, overlong, and hard to access. It lacks empathetic characters, it's pacing is bizarre and inconsistent. It may have been a milestone book at one time, but it is not actually -- well -- good.
I've seen both the old film and the SciFi miniseries. The book is the best way to experience the story, no doubt. Too much of the plot revolves around mental control, subtle understandings, and 'magic' to translate well onto film.
However, just because it's the best doesn't mean it's good.
I didn't mind the "full cast" production for a long time, until narrators started switching towards the end. The sudden change in the voice of Vladimir Harkonen was particularly jarring.
Overall -- don't waste your time. This is a classic in the same way that a biplane is classic. Important in it's day, but you wouldn't want to fly in one now if you could avoid it.
This audio version of Dune is the best I've ever heard. I got more out of it listening to it than I have the multiple times I've read it. I think the reason for this is how well the narrators bring the story and characters to life. The story itself is, as most people know, a classic. The narrators are varied and it never feels like they are reading the story to you. The only thing I found odd was the accent used for the Freemen. It didn't distract from my enjoyment of the audiobook, but it wasn't how I imagined they sounded like, so it took me a little while to get used to it. This is a true performance piece and not to be missed.
This audiobook was truly amazing. The performance, while separate voice actors sometimes portrayed certain characters at some times, only to default to a single narrator for the majority of times, was brilliant.
The story was truly engrossing, and the performance truly enhanced the experience.
I would definitely say everyone should experience this audiobook.
The onlt thing that bothered me about the audio version is the music. I would prefer the story and it's full cast of voices without music.
Dune is one of the epic stories you have to read (or listen to) to in your lifetime. And while the narrator was great, I found it VERY annoying that the voice actors were not consistent - it would have been 5 Stars if the actors could have kept up with their lines instead of being in this chapter, missing a few chapers and then again in that chapetr as a different character! Still, I do recommend.
I enjoyed this immensely. I recall when it was first given to me as a book, then the late ‘60s. I can still see the torn and ragged paperback cover, the many dog-eared pages my eyes never embraced. Good things come to them that wait.
It’s difficult to comprehend the breadth of imagination necessary to create a tale of such depth and scope. But, Herbert’s use of Arabic culture offers more, as if he caught a zephyr of prescience. There’s the spice, a psychic oil that fuels all commerce. There’s the desert people who struggle to survive political oppression and the harshest, though richest, of environments. Herbert tells of how peoples are thus tempered to become the toughest, most resilient and determined of fighters. Add to this proverbs suitable to our own days.
“When religion and politics travel in the same cart, the riders believe nothing can stand in their way. Their movement becomes headlong – faster and faster and faster. They put aside all thought of obstacles and forget that a precipice does not show itself to the man in a blind rush until it’s too late.”
A superb reading by a delightful cast. My highest rating in the absence of perfection.
I've listened to this so many times...I never get tired of it!
Frank Herbert's best book. The more times you read or listen to it, the more you can appreciate it.
Great cast. Simon Vance is the best of the best.
I think this is the best audio book I've ever listened to, along with Lord of the Rings series performed by Bob Inglis.
Love Science Fiction and some Fantasy books.
I approached this book hesitant but excited. I heard a lot of good things about the book and the audiobook, but I was nervous that the plot would not hold my attention. The book starts off slow enough, and didn't start to pick up until nearing the half way point. But, once I got to that half way point, WOW! The book took off like a rocket and I couldn't put it away.
Con: I must admit, I really did not enjoy the sections that did not directly involve either the main character, Paul, or his mother. The antagonist, the Baron, was not a very interesting character, although his nephew was. I got the feeling Baron was an insignificant character, which made me want to skip over his story. There are quite a few characters to remember, and I had a hard time keeping them straight. I really can only keep track of about 8-10 characters in a book before I start loosing track of who is who.
Pro: Story telling is some of the best I have heard. The narration is as close to perfect as you can get. Sometimes the story felt slow and I became disinterested, but when I realized it was because I only wanted to know more on the main character, I let up (I prefer first person stories myself). The writing and the descriptions are very good, but sometimes I had difficulty picturing what was happening (sometimes, less is more).
All and all, I would recommend this to everyone that loves good science fiction.
Dune is probably the most visionary and overall best sci-fi book written in the context of the time of its writing. The tale is very compelling and there are so very many themes and nuances that later authors have borrowed. It was well worth my time.
"A superb production of a sci fi classic!"
I won't dwell on the book itself - it is for many the highwater mark of the sci fi genre; superbly written, richly detailed, boiling with wonderful ideas and concepts, and giving an impression of historical depth that (almost) rivals Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. Rather, I'd like to comment on the audio presentation. Potential listeners should have no hesitation in downloading this immediately! Simon Vance is the main reader, and - as always! - his reading is of the highest calibre - clear, faultless pronounciation, and with a fine balance of character voicing without over-acting. Although it's billed as a full-cast reading (from the superb Audio Renaissance team), the full cast are only used on some chapters, while Simon Vance reads many chapters solo. And while I love the Audio Renaissance team, I actually found the solo Vance chapters even better. A very highly recommended listen! And what great news that the sequels will be available over the upcoming months!
"Dune is to SciFi, as what LOR is to Fantasy"
I loved the 1984 film adaptation of Dune as a child, but I have never read the book.
I went through this audio book, Twice! In one week. What a story and to think it was published in 1965.
I really loved the way this book is written and audio production is the best I have every heard, and adds to the entertainment value.
There is a the main narrator Simon Vance who is brilliant, but the additional narrators and ambient sounds used add more colour to the sound.
Scifi may be back drop to this story, but the main drama is in the relationships and the characters. I urge non Scifi readers looking for a good book with great intertwining plots, varied characters told in a oracle like voice to listen to this story.
I enjoyed this more than Lord of the Rings, which I do like. I like a long story that is well written and this is one of the best.
"read and heard now!!!!!"
I first read this book years and years ago. After getting an iPod, to while away the hours at work, cnc programmer and operator, I decided to try an audio book. I went for Dune with the thought of 'I've read it, so lets see how it listens' so to speak. AMAZED. I loved every minute, got totally engrossed, beautifully read, good background mood music, thoroughly enjoyed it. Next audio book please!
"High drama but more of it please"
Dune is a book of high tension, filled with treachery, suspicion and dangerous characters with dark motives. The early scenes of this audiobook are dramatised and they capture the mood expertly. This is edge-of-the-seat stuff and makes for compelling listening. I could feel the 'gom jabar' at my own neck as my hands went all clammy! What a pity the dramatisation lessens, giving way to straight narration as the book progresses. It is read very well throughout but it could have been so much more gripping if the full cast had been retained. Another annoying gripe, common to so many audiobooks. Why can't the audio 'chapters' correspond with those in the book instead of ending randomly mid paragraph? It makes navigating a long book unnecessarily difficult.
"Belive the hype"
Dune is the ultimate SciFi classic and deserves the tag.
The story is rich, complex and chronicles the life of the royal families of the worlds of Dune. The story is filled with intrigue, paranoia and challenge.
This is a great book. One of the most detailed and compelling books i have ever read and now its even better to listen to. Frank Herbert(author) has created an entire universe with great detail helping you to imagine each environment easily. While it is generaly assumed that this is a sci-fi book there is no space battles and the way that Frank explains each place it is easy to fall into the assumption that its a simple fiction book.
With voices that are very easy to listen to. You can have many an hour of fun enjoying the first in the series of books by Frank Herbert, there are also many books that continue the storyline layed out by Frank written by his son Brian Herbert and Kevin J Anderson. After listening or reading this book I can pritty much guarantee that you will want to read or listen to the next set of books.
The only thing i would say is that currently audible uk does not have any of the other books available however they are very much worth reading.
I hope you like this book as much as i do. Personaly i would recomend reading the books in the following order. I recomend this to help explain storylines. (the numbers is the number the book is currently in, in timeline order, not order of been written). Dune(7), (then jumping back in time about 30-40 years earlier) House Atredies(4), House Harkonen(5), House Corino(6), (jumping back to after Dune) Dune Messiah(8), Children of Dune(9), God emperor of Dune(10), (jumping back in time to many many years before Dune) The Butlerian Jihad(1), The Machine Crusade(2), The Battle of Corin(3), (now the grownding for the machines and the jihad has been established back up to after god emperor) Heretics of Dune(11), Chapterhouse: Dune(12), Hunters of Dune(13), (and the soon to be released) Sand worms of Dune(14).
Anyway i hope you enjoy the series as much as i have and I look forward to more of the books coming onto this site.
"Rather fragmented production of a wonderful book"
I read 'Dune' in my teens and adored it - the complexities of the story and the depth to which the eco-system of the desert planet is planned are quite breathtaking. So I was looking forward to having the audiobook so I could re-live the wonder. Unfortunately this is a bit of a fragmented production. The main narrator has a voice fitting to the scope of the book and reads well. However, my guess is that originally the production company brought in other actors to read the dialogue - but for an ABRIDGED version. But they didn't bother to use them to complete the unabridged recording. Therefore, at some points, we have dialogue of the main characters read by other actors (often with some annoying 'atmospheric' sound effects, music or irritating echoic effects in the background). Then at other sections of the story all the voices of dialogue are provided by the main narrator, which makes the whole thing sadly disjointed. Ironically, I think it works far better with the narrator alone providing all dialogue - so the company could have saved themselves the cost and trouble of getting other people in and would still have ended up with a better, more choherent performance of the book. I will still finish listening to the audiobook, just to enjoy the marvellous story, but I feel the oddities of the recording will always keep me from being completely immersed in the tale.
This is a very good book and the reading is one of the best I have heard so far using a variety of people to produce the voices and the readers express the characters well.
This is a superbly read, expertly-produced audiobook that draws the listener headlong into the world of Arrakis and the adventures of Dune. The narration, acting, music and effects all compliment each other beautifully to create an experience that does true justice to this Sci-Fi epic.
I have always meant to read the book, but on leafing through a copy in a shop it has always looked a bit dry, maybe a bit slow. I enjoyed the film years ago so I knew I liked the story.
This audiobook is very long, sometimes quite slow and often repetitive but it is also epic and involving in a way that few books ever are. The production is fantastic, the main narrator has a clear voice and the use of actors to voice certain scenes just adds to the richness. The Barron Harkonnen is especially well voiced and far more threathening than in the film.
I was sad when it ended and the sequel is already next on my download list.
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