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Publisher's Summary

Santaroga seemed to be nothing more than a prosperous farm community. But there was something...different...about Santaroga.

Santaroga had no juvenile delinquency, or any crime at all. Outsiders found no house for sale or rent in this valley, and no one ever moved out. No one bought cigarettes in Santaroga. No cheese, wine, beer, or produce from outside the valley could be sold there. The list went on and on and grew stranger and stranger.

Maybe Santaroga was the last outpost of American individualism. Maybe they were just a bunch of religious kooks....

Or maybe there was something extraordinary at work in Santaroga. Something far more disturbing than anyone could imagine.

©2002 Frank Herbert (P)2010 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Herbert does more than carry events forward: he deals with the consequences of events, the implications of decisions." ( St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

What listeners say about The Santaroga Barrier

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The Republic of Holy Prayer

The Santaroga Barrier is a novel of a republic and its quite real god at war with the outside. "Santaroga" isn't quite Spanish, but "santo" is "holy," and "rogar" is "to pray," so I tentatively interpret "Santaroga" as the republic of "holy prayer." Readers of Plato will recognize features of the republic imagined by Socrates, Glaucon, and Adeimantus. Readers of Spinoza will recognize man as the thinking part of Substance. Readers of Heidegger will recognize "Dasein" and "Sorge." Readers who study childhood education will recognize "Piaget." For students of political philosophy who like fictional treatments of the political problems, the novel probably warrants multiple readings.

Scott Brick read well, as he always does. He could have made the characters' voices easier to distinguish in dialogue, but his narration still deserves four or five stars.

6 people found this helpful

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Frank. What more?

This is good Jaspers. Yes. Yup. Nice. Good stuff. A bit creepy. Herbert rocks. Copacetic.

1 person found this helpful

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A good story

The story is enjoyable. Parts of the plot require some serious suspension of disbelief to get past, but overall it is entertaining and fun to listen to.

1 person found this helpful

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Herbert's strongest resonance with Camp 38

if you haven't read Camp 38 you must do so in conjunction with this book.

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New Favorite

It's too good. A mystery, action and suspense with a morbid touch of comedy. Very different from other books by Herbert.

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A happy life....

First read was many many years ago when in college, and I didn't remember it very fondly. Why did the main character resist? But this time around I found the nuance of the story had grown over the years.

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Story good - structure was bothersome

Narration not too bad. The story seemed a little different than my paper copy. I'll try to check. Had 19 chapters posted. The book must have been different - maybe 14/15. The transition between chapters was poor. Verbal chapter breaks were a quick number with no pause that reading allows - and the chapter numbers didn't match. Audible tracking was accurate so no lost voice. Some reading continued with no 'chapter' notification other than the displayed trace. All this just a bother . Kept me from appreciating the structure and hence the volume as I have seen on other Audible files. This 'Review' popped up and overlaid the displayed reading page. I'd not seen this before. That's poor form (I'm a low key web page designed and felt this was poor and bothersome.

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Great read

Slow burn thriller, Quality Frank writing. Takes place in contemporary 1960s California. The story has a couple of punches, its definitely a product of the time. It handles these things with deference though. I was reminded of Scanner Darkly mixed with some of Frank's nior short stories.

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Intriguing story, but too long

This is good science fiction, but unremarkable and forgettable. Presumably it was more culturally shocking around the time of its release. Today, it has the feel of a dusty, slightly mildewed heirloom: quite lovely in its essence, but without any luster.