Twinkle, Twinkle,…

I tend not to re-read books, largely because I extend my library at a faster rate than I read, so I’m slowly accumulating an ever-increasing number of unread books. But sometimes it’s nice to revisit an old favourite, either to find that while the text has remained constant, the reader has changed sufficiently to discover new facets to the story, or just to relish some well-written prose that has been deployed to good effect.

After the enjoyable challenge of War and Peace, I thought I’d treat myself to a re-reading of Dune, by Frank Herbert, which I first read when I was a teenager. I’ve re-read it several times since, so it was more a case of sitting back and enjoying the quality of the writing and the scope and depth of Herbert’s imagination, rather than a delving for new meanings. But it was interesting to read it having (relatively) recently tackled the first three Foundation books, by Isaac Asimov. As implausible as it seems in a world where we can’t even manage to feed all of the people, I do hope that these spectacular visions of our species sprawled across the stars are more prescient than wishful. Although I do worry that if it happens in my lifetime, my exploration of distant worlds might hinder me from reading all those books that I’ve got…

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