‘Dune’ Is One of the Most Influential Sci-Fi Books Ever


Frank Herbert’s traditional science fiction novel Dune, first printed in 1965, continues to be extraordinarily influential. Science fiction writer Matthew Kressel just lately re-read Dune for the primary time in additional than a decade.

“I used to be frightened,” Kressel says in Episode 417 of the Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. “I used to be like, ‘Am I going to learn this and never prefer it now? Have I outgrown this guide?’ And completely not. It was the precise reverse. I find it irresistible much more.”

Dune accommodates a depth of worldbuilding that’s seldom matched in science fiction. Geek’s Information to the Galaxy host David Barr Kirtley has all the time discovered the guide a bit gradual, however he acknowledges it as an amazing achievement.

“It’s a extremely spectacular guide, simply coming from the perspective of a author,” he says. “I’m in absolute awe, simply fascinated about the type of effort and thought it might take to write down a guide like this.”

Dune has influenced many subsequent works, from Star Wars to Sport of Thrones. TV author Andrea Kail says that Dune‘s affect on the Wheel of Time sequence is especially apparent. “I keep in mind clearly studying the Wheel of Time books for the primary time,” she says, “and I’m like, ‘Wait a minute, that is completely Dune.’ He simply lifted it wholesale.”

Frank Herbert wrote 5 sequels to Dune, and his son Brian Herbert (along with Kevin J. Anderson) has written greater than a dozen extra. Fantasy writer Rajan Khanna sampled the primary few sequels, however stays most within the unique novel.

“I used to be feeling a way of diminishing returns as I went additional,” he says. “So I made a decision, ‘No, I’m good. I’ll simply re-read Dune.’ Perhaps sometime I’ll learn the entire sequence. However after watching too many film sequence the place they only worsen and worse, I assumed, ‘Perhaps this time I’ll simply go away it originally.’”

Take heed to the entire interview with Matthew Kressel, Andrea Kail, and Rajan Khanna in Episode 417 of Geek’s Information to the Galaxy (above). And take a look at some highlights from the dialogue beneath.

David Barr Kirtley on Dreamer of Dune:

“There’s a biography of Frank Herbert that I learn known as Dreamer of Dune, written by his son Brian Herbert, who went on—together with Kevin J. Anderson—to write down the sequel/prequel books. Sadly it was 15 or 20 years in the past that I learn it, so I don’t keep in mind it intimately, however I simply keep in mind actually vividly there was an element the place [Frank Herbert] had put all the things into Dune, and if it wasn’t a hit he was going to have to surrender writing. I simply keep in mind I closed the guide at that time, and was actually depressed. I used to be like, ‘Oh man, that is so laborious.’ Then I picked it up the subsequent day and began studying once more, and all the things went nice for him, by way of the guide, after that.”

Matthew Kressel on courtroom intrigue:

“What I like about this guide is that there are such a lot of layers of manipulation—and Herbert speaks brazenly about this, the feints inside feints inside feints. Everyone is taking part in one another on a number of ranges, even to the purpose that the Bene Gesserit may need been performed by someone else on a good larger scale. … [Herbert] understands what actually motivates individuals. In that dinner scene, each look, each movement, the place somebody’s standing, all of it has significance. Typically I’ll learn a science fiction guide and I’ll say, ‘Oh, that’s type of ridiculous. I really feel the writer’s hand.’ However in Dune, there was by no means a second the place I assumed, ‘Properly, that’s ridiculous. That might by no means occur.’ He’s simply an astute observer of human nature.”

Rajan Khanna on Dune vs. Sport of Thrones:

“Once I was studying [Dune], it felt very Sport of Thrones to me, in that you simply notice that Vladimir Harkonnen, the Baron, is simply taking part in the sport higher. In a approach, you possibly can draw a direct line from Leto to Ned Stark, and be like, ‘Oh, he died as a result of he didn’t play the sport proper.’ He was attempting to be too noble, and the sport doesn’t work that approach. So I feel as you learn extra of it, the Baron is simply doing what he must do to place his home on high. And I really feel like should you regarded on the different homes of the landsraad, you’d in all probability see extra of that type of scheming, primarily based on each different single noble individual we see on this guide.”

Andrea Kail on the ability of literature:

“Studying [Dune] made me notice the place I acquired my whole life philosophy from. I all the time say that I used to be raised by books—my whole lifestyle I acquired from books. That is the guide the place I realized about honor, and sacrifice, and doing the fitting factor regardless of the associated fee to you. I’d forgotten the place it got here from—I knew it got here from books—however this was the supply, this was like a private Bible for me. And realizing that was extremely emotional. I used to be studying this whereas I used to be on a enterprise journey, and I’m sitting alone in a lodge room, studying, and truly simply crying. Not a lot due to the guide, however as a result of I used to be re-discovering myself as a young person who was simply influenced by literature.”

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