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So, how many Dune books are there?

Guest Writer

9 min read

Mar 24



How Many Dune Books are There?

Since Frank Herbert introduced his groundbreaking sci-fi novel "Dune" in 1965, readers have been enthralled by its expansive and intricate political universe. While Herbert wrote only six Dune novels in his lifetime, his legacy lives on through his son, Brian Herbert, and bestselling author Kevin J. Anderson, who have expanded the series with new canon stories.

As a result, there are now an impressive 23 novels in the Dune franchise, spanning a timeline of 15,000 years.

With "Dune Part 2" hitting theaters, interest in the series is at an all-time high, making it the perfect time to dive into the novels that started it all. To help you navigate the vast Dune universe, we've outlined the entire Dune book timeline below.

The first 6 Dune Books by Frank Herbert's

  1. Dune

  2. Dune Messiah

  3. Children of Dune

  4. God Emperor of Dune

  5. Heretics of Dune

  6. Chapterhouse: Dune

Technically, there are 23 Dune books in total, with only six written by Frank Herbert himself. While some readers may prefer to start with Herbert's original novels, others may choose to explore the additional stories written by sons Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson.

Whether you're a longtime fan or new to the series, the Dune books offer a rich tapestry of storytelling and themes that continue to captivate readers worldwide.

Join literary journey into the world of Dune today and experience the timeless appeal of this iconic sci-fi.

The Butlerian Jihad by son Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Decades after the release of the original Dune series, Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson crafted a prequel trilogy that delves deep into the rich lore and world-building of Frank Herbert's iconic universe. This prequel, the first installment in the trilogy, serves as a foundational exploration, expanding upon the intricate tapestry of the Dune canon.

Set roughly 10,000 years before the events of Frank Herbert's original novel, this story lays the groundwork for the feudal society and technologically-barren landscape depicted in the series. It chronicles the genesis of a pivotal conflict—a harrowing war between humanity's last bastions of freedom and the formidable artificial intelligence and robotics they once wielded.

how many Dune books are there?

By fleshing out the origins of this epic struggle, Herbert and Anderson offer readers a compelling glimpse into the formative years of the Dune universe. Through meticulous world-building and immersive storytelling, they breathe new life into familiar landscapes while introducing captivating characters and conflicts that resonate with fans old and new.

This prequel trilogy serves as an essential companion to Frank Herbert's timeless masterpiece, enriching the Dune saga with fresh perspectives and untold histories. With each page, readers are transported to a distant past teeming with intrigue, betrayal, and the inexorable march of destiny—a testament to the enduring legacy of one of science fiction's most revered franchises. Order on Amazon here!

The Machine Crusade by son Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

how many Dune books are there?

In Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson's second Dune trilogy, readers are introduced to key figures in the Dune universe, including ancestors of House Atreides and House Harkonnen. Against the backdrop of a relentless war with the malevolent sentient computer overlord, Ominus, the narrative is filled with dense world-building and intricate plotting. This sequel builds upon its predecessor, setting the stage for an epic final battle that promises to reshape the fate of humanity. Order Here!

The Battle of Corrin by son Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Set a century after the events chronicled in "The Butlerian Jihad," this book delves deeper into Ominus' relentless pursuit of universal domination. As the conflict reaches its most harrowing stage, pivotal moments in history unfold, shaping the fate of entire planets. Ominus' sinister machinations push the universe to its breaking point, forcing each world to take drastic measures to ensure its survival.

how many Dune books are there?

This entry serves as a crucial precursor to the events of the original book, laying the groundwork for the status quo depicted in "Dune." Notably, it introduces the battle-hardened iteration of the Fremen, the desert warriors whom Paul encounters in the iconic saga. Through its gripping narrative and vivid world-building, this immerses readers in a tumultuous era where alliances are forged, betrayals abound, and the fate of civilizations hangs in the balance. Order on Amazon here!

Sisterhood of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

The next chronological installment in Herbert and Anderson's trilogies is "Schools of Dune." With a significant time jump of 83 years, the narrative delves into a world that has evolved without the presence of "thinking machines," exploring its profound impact on the universe. Through the journeys of diverse characters navigating different corners of the galaxy, crucial insights emerge about the burgeoning Butlerian movement and the escalating violence gripping the cosmos.

Mentats of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Following the near-total destruction of thinking machines, a school emerges to train "Mentats"—exceptionally intelligent humans poised to fill the void left by the war's devastation. Simultaneously, other academies, such as a new sisterhood school on Wallach IX, are established. However, amidst these developments, a vengeful young woman lurks within their ranks, threatening to unravel everything. As the schools fight for their existence, so too does the universe, with the rise of Butlerian fanatics adding to the turmoil.

Navigators of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Continuing the exploration of the origins of the Bene Gesserit, Mentat, and Suk Schools, the concluding book in this trilogy zeroes in on the escalating menace posed by anti-technology factions inspired by the Butlerian Jihad. Can logic and reason prevail against the rising tide of fanaticism sweeping across the universe? This pivotal question lies at the heart of Herbert and Anderson's narrative, as they delve deeper into the widening ideological chasm.

House Atreides by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

The initial installment in the Prelude to Dune trilogy brings readers tantalizingly close to the events of the original Dune novels, unfolding a mere 35 years before their commencement. As intricate plotlines converge, readers are introduced to key figures such as Leto Atreides, Duncan Idaho, Baron Harkonnen, and the Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam. Against a backdrop of political intrigue and maneuvering, alliances are forged, loyalties tested, and the stage is meticulously set for an epochal conflict that promises to reshape the universe.

House Harkonnen by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

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In the ongoing Prelude trilogy, this novel further delves into the intricate drama and political machinations that set the stage for the original Dune novels. As the power struggle intensifies between Houses Harkonnen and Atreides, the Bene Gesserit clandestinely maneuver toward their ultimate goal: the creation of the chosen one known as the Kwisatz Haderach, by orchestrating the union of Leto and his concubine, Jessica. For those eager to uncover the origins of Herbert's beloved books, this installment provides invaluable insights into the events that shaped the Dune universe.

House Corrino by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Concluding the Prelude trilogy, this gripping novel places Leto, Jessica, and their imminent son, Paul, at the heart of the action. As the expectant parents eagerly anticipate the birth of their child, the Bene Gesserit witches share in their excitement, foreseeing the arrival of their chosen one. However, seasoned readers of the Dune series may anticipate a different outcome, as the story unfolds with unexpected twists and turns.

Princess of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Highlighting the narratives of the two women in Paul Atreides' life, this companion novel delves into the contrasting experiences of his forced wife, Irulan, and the woman he falls in love with during his adventures, Chani. Their intertwined stories form the backbone of this book, offering a comprehensive exploration of the influential women surrounding Paul and the pivotal roles they play in his life, for better or for worse.

The Duke of Caladan by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

As the last new trilogy preceding Herbert's inaugural Dune novel, the Caldan stories delve into the ascent of Paul's father, Leto Atreides, to prominence in the universe. Guided by principles of honesty, action, and integrity, Duke Leto navigates the complexities of politics and power, steadily ascending to a position of unparalleled influence at the heart of the galaxy. However, his newfound status propels him onto a perilous and ultimately fatal trajectory, fraught with danger and unforeseen consequences.

The Lady of Caladan by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

When Lady Jessica defied the Bene Gesserit, her life took an irreversible turn, altering the course of the universe. In this book, we witness the profound impact of her choice and its far-reaching consequences. Confronted by the formidable ancient order, one woman's unwavering love for her family becomes her greatest weapon. Yet, the odds seem insurmountable, leaving her to grapple with the daunting task of making the ultimate decision and, more urgently, of simply surviving.

The Heir of Caladan by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

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As the trilogy draws to a close, it revolves around the ascent of Paul Atreides, revered across the universe as Muad’Dib. However, in this installment, Paul has yet to embrace that legendary title. Instead, he embarks on a profound journey of self-discovery, searching for the inner strength and conviction needed to assume his destined role as leader. For readers who have followed this journey thus far, the culmination of this trilogy promises a richly rewarding experience, leading seamlessly into the iconic original novel that laid the foundation for the entire saga.

Frank Herbert's Dune

Herbert's groundbreaking soft sci-fi novel, "Dune," marked the inception of a remarkable journey for readers, immersing them in the world of House Atreides and their young son, Paul, as they venture to control the lucrative Spice trade on the desert planet Arrakis. With a focus on interplanetary politics and the vast planetary landscapes of his universe, "Dune" offers a dense yet essential read for understanding the breadth of Herbert's creation. While it was the first Dune book published, subsequent prequels by Herbert and Anderson now place it in the middle of the reading list.

Paul of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

This story delves into the life of Paul Atreides, encompassing both his experiences before and after the events of Dune. As a young child, Paul finds himself embroiled in the perilous politics of the universe as preparations are made for his father's wedding. In the aftermath of Dune, we witness Paul's journey alongside the Fremen and his deepening relationship with his lover, Chani, as they forge a future together.

Frank Herbert's Dune Messiah

In Herbert's second book, Paul Atreides takes center stage, a decade into his reign as Emperor. Having assumed the role of Messiah to the Fremen, Paul finds himself inadvertently sparking another intergalactic Jihad, plunging galaxies into chaos and conflict. Despite his efforts to alter the bleak future he has foreseen through his visions, Paul faces daunting challenges on his quest for redemption.

The Winds of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Set in the aftermath of Paul's disappearance and presumed death in the desert, this book bridges the gap between "Dune Messiah" and "Children of Dune." As readers catch up with Paul's mother, Jessica, her daughter and Emperor Regent, Alia, and the enigmatic Duncan Idaho, they are taken on a sweeping galactic adventure. This narrative not only enriches the original writings of Herbert with added context and history but also introduces crucial lore and world-building elements that deepen the reader's understanding of the Dune universe.

Frank Herbert's Children of Dune

In Herbert's third book, the shifting ecological landscape of Arrakis triggers profound changes across the universe. Paul Atreides' young children, Leto and Ghanima, grapple with the weight of their father's legacy as they confront their destinies and wrestle with the fear of following in his footsteps. Meanwhile, the Spice trade faces unforeseen challenges from an unexpected adversary, leading to the emergence of a new leader poised to reshape the balance of power.

Frank Herbert's God-Emperor of Dune

In the aftermath of the startling events of the previous book, readers are transported 3,500 years into the future to join Leto. But how is he nearly 4,000 years old? The answer lies in his merger with a Sandworm in "Children of Dune," a transformative experience that has enabled him to rule the universe with unwavering authority and a ruthless regime. This novel delves into Leto's reign and examines his far-reaching influence on the cosmos as he strives to maintain his grip on power and control over the Spice trade at any cost.

Frank Herbert's Heretics of Dune

Get ready for another leap through time! This time, we find ourselves on Arrakis, 1,500 years after the demise of God Emperor Leto. Humanity is experiencing a resurgence, and Sandworms have reclaimed their prominence. Amidst this shifting landscape, three new civilizations have risen to power, with the Bene Gesserit facing a formidable dilemma. Do they maintain their traditional role as covert orchestrators of galactic affairs, or do they step forward as true leaders to capitalize on the power vacuum in the universe?

Frank Herbert's Chapterhouse: Dune

Caught in a fierce conflict with the formidable Honored Matres, another matriarchal organization, the Bene Gesserit find themselves embroiled in a desperate struggle for survival against their ruthless adversaries. This marked Herbert's final book, culminating in a renowned cliffhanger that remained unresolved following his passing shortly after its publication. However, his son and collaborator, Anderson, would later carry on the story, offering readers a continuation of the epic tale.

Hunters of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

The initial installment of a duology that draws inspiration from notes left by Herbert for what was originally intended as Dune 7. Continuing the narrative established in Herbert's books, this title delves into the aftermath of the conflict between the Bene Gesserit and the Honored Matres. Additionally, it explores the resurgence of the numerous descendants of humans who were scattered across the universe during the rule of God Emperor Leto.

Sandworms of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Packed with clones, unexpected comebacks, and a major revelation about the series' antagonists, this book delivers an event of monumental proportions. It meticulously weaves together the myriad loose threads left by the original books, offering readers a gripping narrative that culminates in an epic final battle. With its intricate structure, diverse character arcs, and breathtaking climax, this book represents the pinnacle of the overarching Dune series—a saga that has continued to evolve and captivate audiences since its inception in 1967.

Guest Writer

9 min read

Mar 24



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