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Whipping Star ❮KINDLE❯ ❂ Whipping Star Author Frank Herbert – A classic novel from the master of science fiction Frank Herbert's Whipping Star Herbert is one of the most thought provoking writers of our time; by focusing on 'alien' culture he makes us examine wh A classic novel from the master of science fiction Frank Herbert's Whipping Star Herbert is one of the most thought provoking writers of our time; by focusing on 'alien' culture he makes us examine what the true definition of 'human' is The Pacific Sun In the far future humankind has made contact with numerous other species Gowachin Laclac Wreaves Pan Spechi Taprisiots and Caleban and has helped to form the ConSentiency to govern among the species After suffering under a tyrannous pure democracy the sentients of the galaxy find the need for a Bureau of Sabotage BuSab to slow the wheels of government thereby preventing it from legislating recklessly BuSab is allowed to sabotage and harass the governmental administrative and economic powers in the ConSentiency Private citizens must not be harassed and vital functions of society are also exemptJorj X McKie is a born troublemaker who has become one of BuSab's best agents Drafted for the impossible task of establishing meaningful communication with an utterly alien entity who defies understanding McKie finds himself racing against time to prevent a mad billionairess from wiping out all life in the ConSentiency.

  • Paperback
  • 255 pages
  • Whipping Star
  • Frank Herbert
  • English
  • 11 December 2016
  • 9780765317759

10 thoughts on “Whipping Star

  1. Lyn Lyn says:

    OriginalWhipping Star by Frank Herbert first published in 1970 explores among many things the complexities of communication; heightened by hyperbole as between xenological species but also as an allegory for human relations I once cross examined a troglodyte who was being intentionally evasive and it was maddening Reading passages in this book was akin to that experience yet Herbert uses it as an illustration of the frailty of relational semantics Another aspect of this book that was disconcerting was an undertone of absurdist humor From reading other Herbert creations I cannot believe that this was intentional yet there it was kind of a Monty Python sensibility And all the amazingly Herbert pulls it off as a psychological instrument This would have made a bizarre Doctor Who episode or a CSI show written and produced by Terry Gilliam Fascinating oddly hypnotic weird and completely uniue except for the pseudo seuel The Dosadi Experiment Whipping Star is a short strange tripFinally Whipping Star represents a singularly jaw dropping phenomenon one that was not achieved by Heinlein’s Starman Jones or by Ursula K LeGuin’s The Dispossessed After decades of reading science fiction I wish that I had paid attention in math class

  2. Benjamin Duffy Benjamin Duffy says:

    Mind blowingLike a lot of Herbert fans I was introduced to Frank Herbert through Dune and its original uintet of seuels And like a lot of Herbert fans I kind of stopped there It was only later years later that I bothered to read some of his other books And while the Dune saga still represents his most complete vision and best storytelling at least through the first four books and is deservedly his best known work I've started to realize that some of his most truly impressive feats of imagination and intelligence lie within his books outside of the series Destination Void with its penetrating insights on the nature of consciousness is one such book The Dosadi Experiment actually a seuel to Whipping Star but which I accidentally read first which takes a much detailed look than Dune at exactly how humans might evolve in a hyper hostile environment is another And Whipping Star is absolutely in that same classHere's just one example of Herbert's genius One thing that was shocking to me in reading Whipping Star is how deeply Herbert approached the idea of communication between humans and aliens Extraterrestrial contact is such a basic staple of science fiction that it's amazing how little some SF authors seem to think it through On the shallow end of the depth continuum you have the Star Trek and Star Wars universes where the vast majority of aliens are just humans with weird bumps on their heads and most of them happen to speak English as a second language for your convenience Certainly there are cultural disconnects as humans deal with Klingons and Wookiees but they're roughly on a par with Crocodile Dundee making his way through New York City in their severity Slightly better thought through than those examples might be Larry Niven's aliens in Known Space clearly they think differently than humans and understanding is rarely perfect but everyone seems to have magic translator boxes and once again the real problem of interspecies communication is hand waved away Closer yet to a realistic treatment would be Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land where the Mars raised human Valentine Michael Smith knew the words and syntax of English but that was no guarantee of clear communication because his whole way of thinking and set of experiences was so vastly different than an Earthling'sHeinlein is the first SF author who appears to have honestly thought the thing through and Herbert takes it to a whole different level in Whipping Star As the protagonist Jorj X McKie attempts to communicate with the mysterious Caleban the basic breakdown in understanding is evident and the characters' frustration is palpable and believable Herbert makes the reader think of what it would be like to deal with a creature that's as intelligent as a human maybe so but not at all human The dialogue between McKie and Fannie Mae alone makes this book worth the price of purchase and the book is filled to bursting with other ideas besides that in spite of being short and fast paced For one it takes a uniue and plausible stab at FTL travel and time travelAn enormously impressive and enjoyable book I give it four stars instead of five only because much like Destination Void the story is a ramshackle thing mostly meant to convey Herbert's ideas from Point A to Point Z It's still than worth the read though if you're into science fiction that makes you think

  3. Ric Ric says:

    The ultimate SF wordsmith Frank Herbert takes on an ambitious project with the classic book Whipping Star In a universe made smaller by instantaneous travel a mystery unfolds as the creatures who make such travel possible are disappearing In fact many have transferred their connectives such that there is just one the Caleban named Fannie Mae Jorj X McGie of the Bureau of Sabotage BuSab an agency responsible for slowing down a hyper efficient universal government is specifically called to investigate McGie uncovers a plot to kill the last Caleban which would trigger the discontinuity of all thinking beings sentients who have used the services of the Calebans The means for Fannie Mae's dissolution is via a ritual flogging the whipping part of the book title whose nature McKie must understand in time to prevent the end of sentient life If this sounds like a big pill of disbelief it is and needs much of the unguent of Herbert's story telling ability for readers to swallowAlthough the overall framework of the book is that of a mystery the bulk of the narrative focuses on the development of communications between McGie and Fannie Mae Fannie Mae can perceive McGie only as the smallest component an accelerated molecule McGie must recognize the true nature of Fannie Mae despite the strange use of jargon by the alien leaving readers with new appreciation for the use of connectives discontinuity and dissolution Herbert shows great skill in depicting the growing understanding between the two The topic of alien communication is seldom tackled well in SF I would put forth as examples of good effort Sagan's Contact using math as language and Miéville's Embassytown using action as language The preceding is perhaps the only part of the book which succeeds The mystery presented with Herbert's flair for the dramatic is not as compelling as the villains are stock characters The resolution seems abrupt and telegraphed However I say bravo for bravado Herbert goes for yard and just misses A high 35 stars This book heightens the expectation for its seuel The Dosadi Experiment which I look forward to re reading next

  4. Jim Jim says:

    I've only read some of his Dune books so I thought to expand a bit This wasn't really worth the effort I think it's supposed to be a farce about communication If so the humor part mostly passed me by What was left seemed mental masturbation than story There were some ingenious aliens but that was about it

  5. Bryan Alexander Bryan Alexander says:

    I picked this from the shelves on impulse I wanted to reread it for pleasure to confirm my memories of the book Also I continue my leisurely effort to remember andor explore Frank Herbert's non Dune booksAnd what a fun novelIt's a bit hard to describe The story takes place in a future where humans and aliens coexist across the galaxy The plot begins as a villain attempts to kill a Calebian an alien with the power to teleport anyone across star systems Our protagonist Jorg McKie is an agent of the delightfully conceived Bureau of Sabotage whose purpose is to slow down the workings of government and whose agents are a mixture of spies and diplomatsThe story is thus a kind of hybrid police procedural and space opera which means tons of action multiple transdimensional beheadings scheming investigation alien worlds aliens and high technology Since Frank Herbert wrote it the novel is also focused on major philosophical issues language and perception sincerity and love and how to deal with deathSo what's so good about it then?To begin with Whipping Star might be the most entertaining Frank Herbert I've ever read The BuSab agents are cards sarcastic and wise cracking always complaining about life and frantically trying to out do each other you get to be boss of the agency by successfully sabotaging the current chief The dialog nicely and refreshingly counterpoints the traditional Herbert style cryptic wisdom we see with his chapter heading epigrams Those are good as ever too Whipping Star is also a fine example of world building Herbert offers very few infodumps Instead he has characters name new things aliens technologies then the action shows what they do The names are often clear or cute jumpdoor sniggertrance Herbert also drops some names and doesn't bother explaining what they represent which is nice and realistic as we normally discuss things people from other times wouldn't know Look at my internal combustion car friends noI mentioned police procedural and this really is one The cops are the BuSab agents and their setup has all of the subgenre's characteristics bureaucracy to wade through legal wrangling forensics labs media to use or evade officers to deploy canny adversaries exploiting structural weaknesses intercultural conflicts and of course a good mystery Since this is a police sf hybrid the mystery naturally involves the nature of the universe It's also a surprise in one way view spoilerBuSab sabotages the crime by helping the victim become healthy hide spoiler

  6. Invadozer Misothorax Circular-thallus Popewaffensquat Invadozer Misothorax Circular-thallus Popewaffensquat says:

    This Frank Herbert fella wrote the book Dune which was a semi sleeper for me as it walked around this barren planet with some aristocracy stuff going on got to try to read it again maybe I'm missing something?This other WHIPPING STAR is swell though Frank's little obtuse and abstract words and concepts hobble around and die and later get picked up and slapped back to life when you are completely confused and he nonchalantly needs to explain the wordconcept for the story's sake which works most of the time in this book Imagine children in the distant future people can instantly travel anywhere so there are planets for swimming hospital hatcheries entire planets of libraries etc relying on these weird spheres who bend space to make it seem next doorthrough a door Some old kooky dominatrix takes on any and many a sentient being to torture with a whip for starters for entertainment and discovers she can torture one of these weird spheres which house a formless mass that reacts to leather whips She forms contracts with these spheremass things and one by one kills them off thru her one armed multi legged hate servants who enjoy beating the hell out of anythingIt's so abstract in parts trying to talk to these sphere things since you have to be on some kinda drug to deal with them that it makes the book interesting plus the idea of torturing a mass that's abstract makes me revel in the perversity panties on my head and cassette tape all over my toes That's the beginning of the book folks there's a fertile pile of concepts that go with each alien race introduced with the idea of if everyone was isolated to their own system what the hell would happen The food and hospital supplies closed off from the rest of the worlds etc The book is able to cover a lot of ground since the concept of bouncing around from system to systemworld to world keeps it fresh and activeA 4 and a half hour read for me never set it down and didn't eat Wanna lose some weight? Read this five star joy buzz Sorry Five Black Holes Review posted originally on sfbookcom

  7. Stephen Stephen says:

    25 stars Not in the same category as the Dune series but what it Overall a decent to good story and some very good writing especially in the conversations between the human and alien characters

  8. fffrank! fffrank! says:

    Short and could have potential but it's adorable Sorry sci fi dudebros i'm ruining this genre with calling this big and MANLY genre adorable But it is tho It would be interesting to get into his works out of Dune beacuse that was long and tiring after a while so i might look into his other books when the library re opens I've read this ages ago

  9. Josh Josh says:

    Here's a basic premise of this novel A seemingly divine being is discovered that allows instantaneous travel from any known point in the universe to any other It is dying If it dies anyone who has used its abilities which means nearly every known sentient being in the universe will die with it because they are all now connected This sentient being has entered into a binding contract with a woman in order to learn about life in our dimension Unfortunately this woman is a sadist and wants to aid in its death for reasons of her own It is up to intersteller saboteurs to stop her Yeah it's a damned weird bookIt's a really good book though And at a short 180 pages you would think it would be a very fast read but I found myself reading certain passages over again and thinking huh? Herbert goes into many scenes where the main characters are trying to communicate with this being and even after they seem to have deciphered their conversations it's still confusing as hell Still the implications in this book are insane and as unlikely as it seems it actually makes sense If you've read Dune you'll know that Frank Herbert is a great author and I doubt many other authors could have pulled off a book like thisIf you're in the mood for a short and just plain weird piece of sci fi I'd recommend Whipping Star You'll just have to find it since unfortunately it is out of print

  10. Jam Jam says:

    The attraction of SF books is that they are like telescopes looking at some point into the far future They aren't hemmed in by the here and now instead in that tiny piece of glass at the very end you get to see myriad possibilities tinted with a hint of reality with some futures of course being far realistic than others SF books come in different genres You have military political biological psychological mystery romance etc one common point being they are based on a futuristic society Many elements are necessary for the creation of an SF book however one of my personal favorites is the ability of the author to create either a being or a society so alien that I find myself hard put to understand it However despite this communication gap I still find myself immersed just enough that I cannot let go of said book Knowing how to achieve such a fine balance between creating too much or too little induced confusion is a difficult talent to cultivate And yet despite the difficulty some books have achieved the ability to walk on such a thin tightrope and one of them is certainly Whipping Star by Frank Herbert To understand the book one must first look at the society on which it is based A society composed of myriad planets inhabited by several different sentient life forms Aliens are a norm of life They may not be well understood by the humans but they live among them work with them and even form friendly sometimes sexual relationships with them To lessen the chances of spoilers I'll only give a tiny look at the plot The main protagonist McKie elite operative of the Bureau of Sabotage is chosen to solve the problem of the dying Caledans and the subseuent deaths or insanity of sentients connected to them Caledans are the masters of the S'eye jumpholes from one location to the next enabling real time travel from planet to planet Sentients can go from one planet to the next as easily and speedily as walking from your house to your neighbor's The universe has been made tiny However Caledans die one after another until only one is left among the sentients As McKie learns that one Caledan is the only entity separating him and all the other races from certain death he realizes that the only way to save everyone is to understand one of the most un human races of them allTransportation and communication are now available for usage in immediate time no longer needing FTL drives and message lasers which may take hours or years depending on the distance and this has come with the assistance of aliens specifically the Taprisiots and Caledans There are other sentient races as well such as the Pan Spechis Palenkis Wreaves Beautybarbers Gowachin etc All these are races with their own set of rules and understanding As is most obvious in such relationships between species misunderstandings do occur sometimes with grave results This book plays exactly on that premise blowing up the grave results that can come out of miscommunication into magnificent proportions Misunderstandings between human and human that's small potatoes But between alien and human aaahthat's truly where great potential world destroying results lie Here's an example of a human and Caledan conversation McKie talks firstWhat is a connective?That which extends from one to eight that is a connective Correct use of verb to be?Huh?Identity verb Strange concept?No no What did you mean there one to eight?Unbinding stuffYou mean like a solvent?Before solventWhat the devil could before have to do with solvents?Perhaps internal than solventsMadnessInternal?Unbounded place of connectivesWe're right back where we started What's a connective?Uncontained opening betweenBetween what?Between one and eightOhhh noAlso between one and xAnd it just goes on from there Infact I find it uite amazing that I kept on reading the book Something about it made me keep on reading and I'm glad because the ending was worth the headache I had trying to make sense of the dialogueCheers

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