How many dune books are there? All Dune books, listed The Mary Sue

With the release of the adaptation and remake of Denis Villenueve’s original film, Frank Herbert’s film Dunes The sci-fi series enjoyed a revival last year. With a cast of exceptional talent, top-notch actors, and a budget of $165 million, it’s easy to see why Dunes has such a successful comeback tour. However, with every great movie, chances are a great book will tell the story first.

Frank Herbert cover "Dunes" with a man walking through the sand dunes.  (Picture: Ace Books)
Dunes 1965, Ace books

It’s been nearly 60 years since the world discovered the futuristic galaxy of the immensely desolate planet of Arrakis. After his first appearance in Magazine of fiction and facts on the analog scene in the form of a three-part section entitled “dune world“, Dunes released in libraries around the world in 1965. Known now as the world’s best-selling science fiction novel of all time, it’s hard to believe it was rejected by 20 mainstream publishers before the Clinton Book Company does not agree to publish it. The first book sets up the constant need for space exploration and the need to discover original habitable planets, while a zealous power struggle unfolds between two main houses: the Atreides and the Harkonnens. Add to that an archaic collective of enlightened superhuman witches, known as the Bene Gesserit, who use mind control and superior combat skills to advance, and you have a colossal battle to obtain the item everyone dream world: the “chilli”. Consuming “spice” or “mixture” allows all tasks to be performed at a very efficient level, for long periods of time. On a desert planet like Arrakis, with such an unforgiving and withered climate, spice is essential for productivity and daily life. Although Dune is set far in the future, Herbert creates an extremely relatable and pragmatic universe that parallels many of the political, socio-economic, and geographic issues we see in today’s news.

The cover of Dune Messiah shows a person in a cape on top of a sand dune, gazing at several planets at night
dune messiah 1969, Ace books

In the sequel to Dunes, we dive deeper into the story of young Paul Atreides, who is the current Emperor of Arrakis and the universe. In Dunes, Paul inherits the position of emperor after the tragic death of his father at the hands of their enemies, the Harkonnens. Paul is constantly in a state of doubt as a ruler, wondering if all that power is worth the constant state of bickering and business. He attempts to learn the ways of the natives of Arrakis known as Fremenbut faces great difficulties.

The cover of Children of Dune depicts a person standing between two mountains, which face the city skyline
Children of Dune 1976, Ace books

We are halfway through the series and things are starting to change on Arrakis. We have a change of direction in Children of Dune, as the spotlight is on Paul Atreides’ twin children, Leto and Ghanima. Nine years ago, their father vanished without a trace, leaving his narcissistic sister and twin Alia’s aunt in charge of the empire. Despite her deceptive tactics and potential infiltration and influence from the Harkonnens, Leto, and Ghanima tax collectors, while being raised with the Arrakeen-born natives, the Fremen.

Cover of God Emperor of Dune;  depicts several green landscapes full of trees, with some planets in the background of the night sky
God Emperor of Dune 1981, Ace books

Jump in time to come! Fast forward 3500 years and the planet of Arrakis is now completely devoid of sand and no longer a desolate wasteland. There is greenery full of trees and nature as far as the eye can see. Leto, the son of Paul Atreides, has stood the test of time by surviving to this point by transforming into a sandworm. He is not well liked by the inhabitants of Arrakis and he has become an unsympathetic dictator of the planet. The plot thickens, as someone close to him has certain plans to undermine his legacy and stop his regime once and for all.

Cover of Heretics of Dune, depicts a large sandworm, with a robed person standing on it
Dune Heretics 1984, Ace books

Unlike Arrakis’ last bustling and teeming state in God Emperor of Dune, the planet has once again returned to its status as a desolate wasteland. The empire has fallen and the people of Arrakis are shy and don’t know what to do next. A leader’s desire is urgent. The arrival of a young woman, whose story is similar to what the late Emperor Leto had prophesied would be the future of Arrakis, awakens the people of Arrakis once again.

Cover of Dune Chapterhouse;  depicts a spaceship, traveling between two planets with a haze overlay
Chapter house: Dune 1985, Ace books

The sixth and final novel in the series finds Arrakis completely destroyed and devoid of human life. The only lives that have been spared are the famous Bene Gesserit witches. Throughout the series, they have been the masterminds behind many major events that have taken place. They smuggle a sandworm from Arrakis and seek to continue their legacy on their home planet, which is the inspiration for the book’s title: Capitular.

There is a reason why the 6 books of the Dunes The series continue to be among the most popular sci-fi novels after all this time. Execution of storylines and extreme attention to detail make this your perfect obsession for the new book series. It’s probably not a bad idea to get ahead, because Dune Part II is currently filming and has a late fall 2023 release date. Prepare to become completely devoid of human interaction and immersed in this universe, as Frank Herbert’s imagination takes you on a wild journey .

(featured image: Warner Bros.)

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