Sunday, July 31, 2011

July Readingfest 3

I'm thinking this reading frenzy is going to continue into August since it's not looking like Camp NaNo is going to work for me then either. At least I'm getting my TBR pile thinned out a little. A very little. But hey, it's constructive and it's progress. This week I was the crazy lady at the county fair, walking around with a book in her hand, reading for ten minutes here and there while my daughter rode the rides.

To finish out my mission of completing the entire Dune series, I sought out Winds of Dune. This is the story of Lady Jessica that continues on after Paul of Dune. For those of you who have questioned the necessity of these newer Dune novels, on this particular one, I agree with you. While Paul of Dune delved into major questions about what drove Paul to leave his new empire behind and disappear into the desert, the few further answers revealed in Winds of Dune could have been tucked into Paul's novel. Filled with what felt with a lot of repeated information, this novel didn't give me the same compelling urge to devour it as the other did. If you're a big fan of the House Vernius plotline, you'll find the answers to all those pesky little questions that have popped up since back in Dune: House Atreides and all the newer books that have followed. If that's not a priority, I'd recommend Paul of Dune and moving on to Children of Dune.

After finishing Hunters of Dune -- which is one of those novels you go into knowing that it's going to end with only half the story told thanks to the author's notes -- I was in such a lurch to find Sandworms of Dune immediately, that I read the last page, set the book down and picked up the phone. I called my local book consignment store (where I'm selling all my leftover NaNoWriMo bookdrive novels) and asked if they had it. They didn't. So I sucked it up and drove to Barnes and Noble.

I can't tell you how long it's been since I've bought a new book off the shelf. Years. This is the problem with reading and critiquing so many other peoples novels, belonging to a book club and living close to a used book store, I don't get out much in that sense. When did the price of a paperback rise to $9.99?

Sandworms of Dune was everything I'd hoped it would be, a well-told, satisfying conclusion to the entire series, old and new. If you can image all sixteen Dune books in a neat stack topped with a bow, that's pretty much what finishing Sandworms of Dune felt like. I was a little concerned when I read that many of the original characters were back (as gholas), trapped aboard a giant no-ship, jumping around the universe to hide from a mysterious unknown Enemy -- you know the nameless, unknown bad entity that hasn't done anything really yet but everyone fears just cause they feel the Enemy is "bad". Granted, there were a few points that seemed obvious to me before the characters figured them out, but as a whole, the novel worked and the series now feels complete.

Wrapping up an epic that spans thousands of years with so many main characters, both good and bad, was a tall order, but Brian Herbert and Kevin Anderson managed to do it. Hooray! And now I can set the Dune universe on my bookshelf, take a deep breath and move on. What will I reach for next?

1 comment:

  1. Hey, Jean. I just gave you the Liebster Award. :)


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