Reviews of Dune: House Atreides (1999)
Review by lucasw (2003-03-13)
I think I like this book more than not, though there were a few elements that were bothersome. Most of the book is set up to present 'revelatory' and miscellaneous history material from the original Dune in it's own fashion. Sometimes this robs Dune, and other times complements it. A good effort is made to present additional history that alludes to the Butlerian Jihad novel that further precludes these novels.
The sense of rapid technological progress undermines the supposed 10,000 year history of post-Jihad imperium, and the feel the Frank Herbert books gave of stasis. Most of the books resolves around technological quick-fixes and innovations that all sprung up around the same time, and the political intrigue that results. The Frank Herbert books revolve more around about the transcension of individuals- Paul, the God-Emporer, Duncan Idaho's ghola, etc. (I forget Heretics and Chapterhouse, I'll have to reread them), and the repercussions thereof. What was the impetus behind all this technological change? Was progress in earlier centuries simply lost, or failed to occur?
I never really liked the implications of lasgun/shield interaction: it seems like disasters would occur frequently, as well as crippling suicide attacks.
Review by Shanrak (2003-03-08)
I've read every single Dune book starting with the original dune, and when this came out, I was hesitant at first to pick it up because the original series tapered off, but I was mildly suprised instead. This book is a worthly addition to Dune as it gives so much background information and fills in many interesting tidbits about the main characters of Dune. The next to books in this series are also worthy reads.