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Dune: House Atreides (Prelude to Dune Series #1)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Prelude to Dune stands on its own merits

Dune: House Atreides, the first of three books leading up to the events of the original Dune series, successfully (re)introduces the characters and themes of the Frank Herbert books, although it is burdened by the legacy the classic Dune books have left behind. Brian...
Dune: House Atreides, the first of three books leading up to the events of the original Dune series, successfully (re)introduces the characters and themes of the Frank Herbert books, although it is burdened by the legacy the classic Dune books have left behind. Brian Herbert, a most gentle and honorable soul I have had the pleasure of meeting on a couple of occasions at book signings, and Kevin J. Anderson, have undertaken an almost impossible task in trying to fill out the missing story lines of the original books. To those who quip that they are just out to make an easy buck, know that this undertaking was not done in haste, and no decision was taken lightly. Brian and Kevin have done their homework and their goal is to finish the story. But to do so requires telling us what lead up to the events in Dune. Creating the 1000 page Dune Concordance used as their Dune encyclopedia, and writing 1800 pages plus to get to the point of being able to finish the Dune story line, not to mention a probably detour to the Butlerian Jihad events 10000 years earlier, is no way to go about making an easy buck! Both authors are accomplished writers who did not need to take on such a tremendous challenge. Yet they have, and although I think the story gets off to a slow start, the last 300 pages made it hard to put the book down. Although one who has read the original books will be familiar with the characters, the story in House Atreides is well enough written to keep the reader's interest, and keep one wondering how things will play out. The authors follow a number of plot threads that generally coalesce into one thread that is followed at the end. My one complaint would be that early on the story line tends to jump around just a little too much. I would have liked to see a little longer spells following one plot or another. Perhaps this clearer focus later on made the book a more gripping read for me as I turned the pages. Having not read the original Dune since the mid 1980's, and only having been able to 'catch' up with Frank Herbert's later Dune books because he sadly passed away - he seemed to write them far faster than I could read them - I cannot easily compare this new book with the original. However, I do not feel compelled to do so either. House Atreides stands on its own merits. It is a book that new fans can enjoy, and old fans should be able to as well. It cannot be as original as the original - that's just the nature of things - but that does not lessen the quality of the book. As the authors become more comfortable with the Dune world they are writing about/in, and their storyline becomes more developed I suspect the future offerings, House Harkonnen, and then House Corrino, will be even more compelling reads. I recommend this book.

posted by Anonymous on November 19, 2003

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

A fair attempt

The original Dune series was enigmatic and challenging. It demanded that the readers pay attention and draw connections that Frank Herbert did not always make immediately clear. With House Atriedes the treatment of the characters and subject is too light and entirely ...
The original Dune series was enigmatic and challenging. It demanded that the readers pay attention and draw connections that Frank Herbert did not always make immediately clear. With House Atriedes the treatment of the characters and subject is too light and entirely too elementary. I respect the challenge that young Herbert faces following in his father's tracks but I was disappointed in the lack of depth.

posted by Anonymous on October 11, 2000

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2000

    Dune for Idiots

    This is probably the worst prequel or sci-fi book that i have finished reading. After 100 pages I felt like returning this back to the public library. It is full of inconsistencies & hollow themes. Whereas Dune was a philosophical novel, this is a story for book of the month club. Here are some things I found awkward: 1)Duncan Idaho killing off a few Harkoneen house troops at age 8? I mean, get real, how pathetic is that house? 2)The Thielex did not have ghola tanks until thousands of years after Leto 11, and there were no 'no-ships' either. 3)That snot nose kid twin who is pampered & then becomes a 'genius' creating a trans-stellar link to his naviator brother, come on! 4)Pardot Kienes instantly becoming a 'prophet' in a nomadic intergroup of Fremen, unplausible at best! 5)House Atreides' economy relies on fish, sandals, and rice but it's still a great house compared to Ix that manufactures advanced components, think about it, 3rd world vs Silicon Valley...who will win? 6)The treatment of the aristocrats and the suboids revolt on Ix was just too much to bear, come on, are we supposed to support that puke kid & his snob sister all while the suboids are suffering? And the takeover of the world in a few days after the author told us how 'advanced & wealthy Ix was'. There were other inconsistencies, unbelievable truths, and half hearted attempts on the part of the authors to create a Dune world, but they failed, and failed miserably!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2012

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