Is Dune is a work of science fiction or a work of fantasy?

    Can't find the appropriate forum for your topic? Post it here!

Moderators: Omphalos, Freakzilla, ᴶᵛᵀᴬ

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 12 Aug 2008 10:29

Secher_Nbiw wrote:
SandChigger wrote: I'm polishing off the Banks' Culture novels first.


cool. but is it just me or are they a little more fucked up than normal sci-fi/fantasy? I mean stuff like the ease and normality with which he broaches changing sex every five minutes or some dangerously witty AI's


Sounds pretty medium fucked up to me :wink: Depends on what else you've read I guess. Banks does have some pretty cool ideas with his whole internal gland control idea.
Image

Secher_Nbiw
Posts: 175
Joined: 04 Jul 2008 06:24
Location: notts
Contact:

Postby Secher_Nbiw » 12 Aug 2008 10:53

Don't get me wrong, i think the guy is a genius, but at first if you don't know what to expect from him, that sort of thing seems a little messed up. personally i can't wait for the day when i can gland myself full of crap or become a woman for a month or so. sharp tongued AI's sound pretty cool too....

out of curiosity, how long did it take you to figure out what Inversions was all about? for the longest time i just couldn't see it. I was about quarter of the way through my third read of it before i clicked.
I am a mortal god.

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 12 Aug 2008 11:29

Secher_Nbiw wrote:Don't get me wrong, i think the guy is a genius, but at first if you don't know what to expect from him, that sort of thing seems a little messed up. personally i can't wait for the day when i can gland myself full of crap or become a woman for a month or so. sharp tongued AI's sound pretty cool too....

out of curiosity, how long did it take you to figure out what Inversions was all about? for the longest time i just couldn't see it. I was about quarter of the way through my third read of it before i clicked.


I'm a Banks newbie, I've just read Consider Phlebas and The Player of Games. I'll probably move through the rest of his books when I finish what I'm reading right now.
Image

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14492
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: A continuing state of irritation
Contact:

Postby SandChigger » 12 Aug 2008 11:44

STILL READING!!! :twisted:

* SPOILERS TO AVOID FOR ANYONE WHO HASN'T READ INVERSIONS!!! *

It's pretty obvious the Doctor is Culture from the beginning (if you're told Inversions is a Culture novel. I wonder now how my impressions would have differed had I not known). I suspected the bodyguard was as well, but when he started telling the little son of the Protector the stories of the two friends in the faraway fairy-tale land, I was pretty certain. (I'm assuming I'm not totally wrong; that's how things seem where I am at the moment: the Doctor & narrator have just returned with the royal party from the Circuition [or whatever it's called] to the provinces.) My guess at the moment is that the Doctor and bodyguard are the two estranged friends, one in favor of and one opposed to Culture interference in unContacted civilizations. (Not sure if this is what you meant by it being all about. ;) )

The glanding stuff is a neat idea. So is the diagnostic "control panel" visualization method Banks described. (Remember, the way a person begins the "gender reassignment" is to visualize accessing a picture of themself and changing it from male to female or vice versa.) But the switching sex idea didn't seem all that new, maybe since I read Varley's lunar civ stories a good while back. (Still remember the one about the environmental artist woman who has sex with a male clone of herself that has somehow escaped disposal when she became a woman again. ;) ) [One good thing to remember about Varley BESIDES his writing: he was once rude to Hyppo at a convention or something and she has never forgiven him and still bitches about it even now YEARS LATER. Not that anyone else would blame him: having ugly women throw themselves at you probably gets old after a while!] The original part of the idea with Banks, though, was the WAY people switch, by just visualizing it AND then their bodies starting the change.

Anyway, Secher, have you read the short story The State of the Art in the collection by the same name? A Contact ship finds and observes Earth. It also touches on the Culture-internal conflict of to Contact or not to Contact.... ;) (Also features the woman Sma and drone from Use of Weapons.)
"Let the dead give water to the dead. As for me, it's NO MORE FUCKING TEARS!"

User avatar
GamePlayer
70mm God
Posts: 2993
Joined: 09 Feb 2008 11:26
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Postby GamePlayer » 12 Aug 2008 12:42

Secher_Nbiw wrote:Don't get me wrong, i think the guy is a genius, but at first if you don't know what to expect from him, that sort of thing seems a little messed up. personally i can't wait for the day when i can gland myself full of crap or become a woman for a month or so. sharp tongued AI's sound pretty cool too....


I actually really enjoyed being fucked with reading the Banks fiction. His work is so out there, it's borderline insulting to my 21st century morality. The male-female shifitng, the drug glands, the fact that Minds run most everything because we're all too primitive. It can really fuck with one's ego as a human being and I like that because it's very challenging. Once I read more and became more open to what the Culture actually meant, it was hilarious to look back at how I initially reacted.

Dune was very much the same way. Which is why I'll always be grateful for reading Frank Herbert's mind-expanding work.

User avatar
Worm
Posts: 68
Joined: 28 Mar 2008 18:23
Location: Here, for the moment
Contact:

Postby Worm » 12 Aug 2008 22:14

I just coulsdn't make it thru a Banks novel. I tried, I heard he was good, but it didn't click with me. I can't put my finger on it, but something was missing and I had to drop the novel before the halfway point. (I hardly ever do that, and can count on 2 hands how often I've done that in the nearly 40 years I've been reading SF) I can't remember the novel name right now.
Image

"I was a friend of Arrakeen... but NOT Hypo."

Secher_Nbiw
Posts: 175
Joined: 04 Jul 2008 06:24
Location: notts
Contact:

Postby Secher_Nbiw » 13 Aug 2008 04:43

A Thing of Eternity wrote:
Secher_Nbiw wrote:Don't get me wrong, i think the guy is a genius, but at first if you don't know what to expect from him, that sort of thing seems a little messed up. personally i can't wait for the day when i can gland myself full of crap or become a woman for a month or so. sharp tongued AI's sound pretty cool too....

out of curiosity, how long did it take you to figure out what Inversions was all about? for the longest time i just couldn't see it. I was about quarter of the way through my third read of it before i clicked.


I'm a Banks newbie, I've just read Consider Phlebas and The Player of Games. I'll probably move through the rest of his books when I finish what I'm reading right now.


I love Player of Games, it's one of my favourites. Mawrin Skel(sp?) is
awesome

SandChigger wrote: It's pretty obvious the Doctor is Culture from the beginning (if you're told Inversions is a Culture novel. I wonder now how my impressions would have differed had I not known).


I didn't know it was a Culture novel when i read it, that's why it took me so long to figure it out. I had a strange feeling that the Doctor and the bodyguard were not from around the normal areas from their stories, and then the penny dropped eventually!
I am a mortal god.

Secher_Nbiw
Posts: 175
Joined: 04 Jul 2008 06:24
Location: notts
Contact:

Postby Secher_Nbiw » 13 Aug 2008 04:47

SandChigger wrote:Anyway, Secher, have you read the short story The State of the Art in the collection by the same name? A Contact ship finds and observes Earth. It also touches on the Culture-internal conflict of to Contact or not to Contact.... ;) (Also features the woman Sma and drone from Use of Weapons.)


I was going to pick up The State of the Art once i was done with Foundation, Robots and Empire, Lord Foul's Bane and Fulgrim (or at least one of them {i read a lot, all at the same time} lol). I read it years ago and can only barely remember it.
I am a mortal god.

Secher_Nbiw
Posts: 175
Joined: 04 Jul 2008 06:24
Location: notts
Contact:

Postby Secher_Nbiw » 13 Aug 2008 10:08

Baraka Bryan wrote:
Secher_Nbiw wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Anyway, Secher, have you read the short story The State of the Art in the collection by the same name? A Contact ship finds and observes Earth. It also touches on the Culture-internal conflict of to Contact or not to Contact.... ;) (Also features the woman Sma and drone from Use of Weapons.)


I was going to pick up The State of the Art once i was done with Foundation, Robots and Empire, Lord Foul's Bane and Fulgrim (or at least one of them {i read a lot, all at the same time} lol). I read it years ago and can only barely remember it.


i'll have to read TSotA sometime...

currently reading the Foundation series myself.


I'm almost done with Foundation, just coming to the end of Second Foundation. It's almost a major contrst with the Robots stuff in a way, but it also shows up in the Robots series, in Robots and Empire the whole crisis situation and how to deal with it. But i have to say i would have gone insane having read only the first two Foundation books and then having to wait in limbo to see if a third was to appear.
I am a mortal god.

User avatar
orald
Posts: 3010
Joined: 28 Feb 2008 14:48
Location: Maximum Security Mental Hospital
Contact:

Postby orald » 13 Aug 2008 10:57

hope you don't kill those co-workers.

And I hope to win the lottary. Though I don't buy the tickets, hmm...

Just bought a hardcover copy of A Feast for Crows so I wouldn't have to reread it on the PC. Cost me the equivilant of about 17$ US.
In memory of Perach, who suffered and died needlessly.

I wish I could have been with you that one last time.

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18257
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Postby Freakzilla » 13 Aug 2008 11:48

orald wrote:
hope you don't kill those co-workers.

And I hope to win the lottary. Though I don't buy the tickets, hmm...


Can't win if you don't play. Don't get addicted to the scratch-offs!
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 13 Aug 2008 11:48

orald wrote:
hope you don't kill those co-workers.

And I hope to win the lottary. Though I don't buy the tickets, hmm...

Just bought a hardcover copy of A Feast for Crows so I wouldn't have to reread it on the PC. Cost me the equivilant of about 17$ US.


That's a good price. I almost bought the first book in that series yesterday, but ended up going with a Richard Morgan book instead.
Image

User avatar
orald
Posts: 3010
Joined: 28 Feb 2008 14:48
Location: Maximum Security Mental Hospital
Contact:

Postby orald » 14 Aug 2008 02:08

Prblem is, I've never really read many hardcovers, and that fucker's heavy! And big!

But I love it all the same.
In memory of Perach, who suffered and died needlessly.



I wish I could have been with you that one last time.

Secher_Nbiw
Posts: 175
Joined: 04 Jul 2008 06:24
Location: notts
Contact:

Postby Secher_Nbiw » 14 Aug 2008 03:10

Baraka Bryan wrote:
Secher_Nbiw wrote:
Baraka Bryan wrote:
Secher_Nbiw wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Anyway, Secher, have you read the short story The State of the Art in the collection by the same name? A Contact ship finds and observes Earth. It also touches on the Culture-internal conflict of to Contact or not to Contact.... ;) (Also features the woman Sma and drone from Use of Weapons.)


I was going to pick up The State of the Art once i was done with Foundation, Robots and Empire, Lord Foul's Bane and Fulgrim (or at least one of them {i read a lot, all at the same time} lol). I read it years ago and can only barely remember it.


i'll have to read TSotA sometime...

currently reading the Foundation series myself.


I'm almost done with Foundation, just coming to the end of Second Foundation. It's almost a major contrst with the Robots stuff in a way, but it also shows up in the Robots series, in Robots and Empire the whole crisis situation and how to deal with it. But i have to say i would have gone insane having read only the first two Foundation books and then having to wait in limbo to see if a third was to appear.


yeah I'm on chapter 15 of Second Foundation right now and have the other sequels on their way to the library. after that I'll read the 2 prequels by asimov and then moving to the galactic empire trilogy.

has anyone read the second foundation trilogy written by Benford/Bear/Brin? is it any good?


Ok, just finished Second Foundation, an from what i've seen so far of the other Foundation books, i'm kinda angling not to read them, the write-up seem too much like what Pinky and the Brain have come up with for Dune. Anyone actuallly read them to know?
I am a mortal god.

User avatar
orald
Posts: 3010
Joined: 28 Feb 2008 14:48
Location: Maximum Security Mental Hospital
Contact:

Postby orald » 16 Aug 2008 16:07

I was never too impressed by the original Foundation books anyway.
In memory of Perach, who suffered and died needlessly.



I wish I could have been with you that one last time.

User avatar
leagued
Posts: 165
Joined: 31 Jul 2008 09:25
Location: Singapore

Postby leagued » 17 Aug 2008 10:18

That's a good price. I almost bought the first book in that series yesterday, but ended up going with a Richard Morgan book instead.


Which Morgan book? I've read all the Kovacs novels and I have Thirteen (aka Black Man) on my shelf. Really good books I thought.
LeagueD

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Aug 2008 13:18

leagued wrote:
That's a good price. I almost bought the first book in that series yesterday, but ended up going with a Richard Morgan book instead.


Which Morgan book? I've read all the Kovacs novels and I have Thirteen (aka Black Man) on my shelf. Really good books I thought.


Hey, finally someone who's read Morgan. I read Broken Angels first, didn't realize it was book two, and just bought Altered Carbon. I'm really looking forward to Market Forces, but I'll have to finish the Kovacs series first. I think they're fantastic so far, and I really don't usually go for these action packed blood and gore type SF books. They pack a pretty good political/social theme, which is probably why I can enjoy them. Plus the tech is supremely interesting and decently well thought out.

How was Black Man, isn't it only called Thirteen in Britain?
Image

User avatar
leagued
Posts: 165
Joined: 31 Jul 2008 09:25
Location: Singapore

Postby leagued » 17 Aug 2008 14:41

Actually I haven't read Thirteen yet; I might get to it after I finish my original Dune reread (on Heretics now). I started it once but didn't really get into it, but that was before I read any of the Kovacs books; now that I know how well Morgan can write, I'm looking forward to giving it another shot. And I think its called Black Man in Britain and Thirteen elsewhere.

The tech in the Kovacs books is great- both the general SF weaponry he throws in and the main body-switching idea. I think AC brings up some interesting identity issues that would come from it, but they get glazed over pretty quickly in favor of more Envoy bad-assery. I also really enjoyed the way technology evolves from Altered Carbon through Woken Furies.
LeagueD

User avatar
cmsahe
Posts: 598
Joined: 26 Aug 2008 22:40
Location: Mexico City

re:

Postby cmsahe » 11 Sep 2008 01:02

Worm wrote:
Omphalos wrote:

Isn't that like 80% of the Disney movie themes?

:wink:


But, IMO, that's not fantasy, it belongs to the Methos of the hero, the travails and hardships that he must endure to pass from childhood to his heroic destiny.
Only the books written by Frank Herbert are canon.


Who We Are and What We Stand For
http://www.jacurutu.com/viewtopic.php?p=79778#p79778
----
Carlos Santillan, aka cmsahe

Lundse
Posts: 524
Joined: 01 Jul 2008 11:36
Location: Århus, Denmark

Postby Lundse » 11 Sep 2008 03:05

SandChigger wrote:Hmmm.

Prescience, Other Memory, Leto II's "superpowers" and Teg's superspeed—there are plenty of fantastical elements in the stories, but everything is tied (more or less) to some physical explanation, whether it be abilities derived from spice use or acquired by intensive training or through genetic inheritance [either accidental or bred-for] or through the interaction of these factors. So the originals are science fiction in my book.

Compare Paul's genetics and spice-based prescience or Teg's superspeed with Norma's magic soostone-focused, torture-born near omnipotence. (Teg's powers were awakened by the torture of the T-probe, of course, so nothing original there about Norma.) Is there ever any real(istic/plausible) scientific basis offered for Norma's powers? (Or UKH Duncan's, either, for that matter?) The exploding-head bimbomb Sorceresses of Rossack, the telekinesis silliness, disappearing BG—these elements all place the new books firmly in the fantasy genre. (And bad fantasy at that.)


I was about to remark something similar - the grounding in a world like ours and the fantstical elements being somewhat explained with a limited and known number of basic causes (cellular control, genetic memory, et al) puts Dune in SF land.

So, 'what he said'...

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14492
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: A continuing state of irritation
Contact:

Postby SandChigger » 11 Sep 2008 05:33

:D
"Let the dead give water to the dead. As for me, it's NO MORE FUCKING TEARS!"

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18257
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Postby Freakzilla » 11 Sep 2008 06:48

Lundse wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Hmmm.

Prescience, Other Memory, Leto II's "superpowers" and Teg's superspeed—there are plenty of fantastical elements in the stories, but everything is tied (more or less) to some physical explanation, whether it be abilities derived from spice use or acquired by intensive training or through genetic inheritance [either accidental or bred-for] or through the interaction of these factors. So the originals are science fiction in my book.

Compare Paul's genetics and spice-based prescience or Teg's superspeed with Norma's magic soostone-focused, torture-born near omnipotence. (Teg's powers were awakened by the torture of the T-probe, of course, so nothing original there about Norma.) Is there ever any real(istic/plausible) scientific basis offered for Norma's powers? (Or UKH Duncan's, either, for that matter?) The exploding-head bimbomb Sorceresses of Rossack, the telekinesis silliness, disappearing BG—these elements all place the new books firmly in the fantasy genre. (And bad fantasy at that.)


I was about to remark something similar - the grounding in a world like ours and the fantstical elements being somewhat explained with a limited and known number of basic causes (cellular control, genetic memory, et al) puts Dune in SF land.

So, 'what he said'...


Bullshit, it's majik! :roll:
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18257
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Postby Freakzilla » 11 Sep 2008 06:59

I recommend reading Asimov's Robot series; The Caves of Steel, The Naked Sun and Robots of Dawn, before moving on to the preques/interquels. Maybe even the Galactic Empire Series; The Stars Like Dust, The Currents of Space and Pebble in the Sky.

You can take or leave Robots and Empire, Prelude to Foundation and Foundation and Earth.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
inhuien
Posts: 3633
Joined: 09 Feb 2008 05:03
Location: right here as in not (all) there

Postby inhuien » 11 Sep 2008 09:07

The Elijah Baley books are first class.
Image

User avatar
Serkanner
Administrator
Posts: 2871
Joined: 17 Feb 2008 18:44
Location: Den Haag - The Netherlands

Postby Serkanner » 11 Sep 2008 09:07

I found Asimov's robot series a lot better then the Foundation series actually. Should re-read them one of these days.
"... the mystery of life isn't a problem to solve but a reality to experience."

“There is no escape—we pay for the violence of our ancestors.”

Sandrider: "Keith went to Bobo's for a weekend of drinking, watched some DVDs,
and wrote a Dune Novel."