Paul Darcy's Reviews > God Emperor of Dune

God Emperor of Dune by Frank Herbert
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Jan 08, 2012

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by Frank Herbert, published in 1981.

I rarely need to struggle and push myself through a science fiction novel, but on this one by Frank Herbert I had to do just that.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not as bad as all that, just very dense and philosophical - which to some is probably great reading, but to me it felt like wading through dogma and cleverness and knee-high swampwaters.

The main character, Leto II the God Emperor, is unquestionably a unique and interesting character in the history of Science Fiction. He is a genetic cross between a great worm of Dune and a man. The novel deals mainly with this character and how he is leading humanity to survival - at least you think he is, or, like others in the novel, maybe his is just insane and needs to be removed.

Thousands of years have passed since Paul Atreides lead the Fremen to take over Dune, and incorporated into the God Emperor are all the Atreides line for the past thousands of years. He sees history through the eyes of hundreds, and knows the Golden Path, the path leading to salvation.

A really cool idea, with really cool characters, but again - tedious. It fails partly because of the omniscient narrator which has you jumping from one character’s mind to another from paragraph to paragraph - I must say I hate that kind of writing and maybe that has coloured my view of this book.

I won’t give away any details because it is in the details that Herbert excels as a novelist and his world is rich and vast and worth the trip. Just be warned, it could be long and arduous one.

Oh, I should mention this is the fourth Dune novel by Herbert and the start of his last trilogy written about Dune.

Overall I can see the vast canvas Herbert has painted and it is magnificent. I just can’t decide if this particular novel is a master-piece or a piece of something else.

You will need to read if for yourself is you want to know what happens to the God Emperor and his Golden Path - if you care to that is.

I am divided on this one - just like the God Emperor himself.
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Paul Darcy Thanks!


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