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Destination, Void (Gregg Press science fiction series)
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About the Author
<DIV>Frank Herbert was born in Tacoma, Washington, and educated at the University of Washington, Seattle. He worked a wide variety of jobs--including TV cameraman, radio commentator, oyster diver, jungle survival instructor, lay analyst, creative writing teacher, reporter and editor of several West Coast newspapers--before becoming a full-time writer. He died in 1986.</div> --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Easy for you to say, Bickle! You lost me after "Listen".
I was listening to the Audible audio book version of Destination Void when I realized something sounded familiar: I had accidentally started thirty minutes before my last point and despite careful listening (this book demands full attention) I barely recognized what I'd just heard. Frankly, I barely understood it anyway.
Herbert's tackled a difficult subject - the nature of consiousness and the creation of a conscious AI - and the resulting novel, while interesting, is a tough nut to crack. There's the subject itself and there's the dense techno-babble (most of which sounds outdated but likely was obscure and idiosyncratic even when first written) which combine into a dense treatise that is only intermittently intelligible. Personally, I had to get the Kindle ebook and re-read the novel slowly and carefully.
I enjoyed Destination Void but it's hard to recommend. If you're interested in sci-fi novels involving space travel, consciousness and intelligence there are other more recent novels like Peter Watts' Blind Sight.
If you're continuing with Herbert's Pandora series, the books do get friendlier.
You can see the same themes--machine intelligence versus man intelligence--in a way, the OMC or the "Organic Mental Core" which is the artificial brain running the long range expedition ship to Tau Ceti is the evil machine-brains that are in the offing in Dune (the Butlerian Jihad.) The clones are the gholas of the Dune series but in this book--they are cloned people given the job of a sub-light journey to a star 400 light years away. This is a giant problem-solving exercise, but sadly, the characters are not nearly as developed as the Dune personalities, who live and breathe, even minor characters.
This is not one of the great Herbert novels but it's better than some and a good solid science fiction novel.
That said, there seemed to be some minor issues with the transfer to digital, based on the overall quality versus specific instances. I'd give the transfer 4 stars.
The story itself brings up and considers a few physics and computer theories while refraining from hand-holding. I appreciated Herbert's restraint by not spelling it all out in a redundant fashion. Instead he takes the time to develop explanations and use them as tools for plot momentum and foil. The character development also carries well.
Overall, I read for pleasure and simply enjoy how Herbert elevated the story past mindless drivel while keeping it fun.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
And maybe I missed this in the book...Read more