Dune  - Frank Herbert This is the second time I read this novel, and it reminded me of just how good it is. Herbert does an excellent job with the planet building in creating Arrakis, the planet known as Dune. He also sets in motion a story of intrigue and politics in an Empire where a religious sect strive to control certain genetic lines while a guild controls a monopoly on space travel. In the midst of this, the House of Atreides is betrayed leaving the young heir to the Duke, Paul, as survivor who is left in the desert. There he is taken in by the Fremen who come to see him as the prophet they have waited for. The novel is definitely a classic of science fiction on many levels. From the setting to the epic story, this is an excellent novel that is hard to put down. It is also a novel that immerses the reader; you want to take your time reading it even as you speed through it. There are so many things I could say about this book. The writing can be very poetic at times. The descriptions of the setting are just amazing. There is a bit of a spiritual element within the science fiction that makes the story work very well. There is suspense in the machinations of the various factions seeking power within the Empire. It has political intrigue, adventure, coming of age, all in an epic science fiction tale. The novel clearly has earned its place in the classics. I will add that I have not read the sequels that Herbert wrote for it. I may pick them up at one point just for the sake of being complete. But this novel pretty much does stand by itself, and you can certainly stop here. As for the extensions by Kevin Anderson and Brian Herbert, I am not as sure if I want to read them. I tend to think less of other people making sequels and prequels to works by other authors, especially someone as good as Frank Herbert was with Dune. I usually figure that for good novels, one should leave well enough alone. Anyhow, that's my disclosure note. Now, if you consider yourself a science fiction reader, and you have not read Dune, go read it.