quarta-feira, 7 de março de 2018

Book Review | Dune Messiah (Dune #2) by Frank Herbert

Muad'dib was already mentally powerful and now holds a material power greater than being the descendant of a duke. He is an super-being and emperor. In Dune Messiah 12 years have passed since the Battle of Arrakeen, where Paul Atreides seized the Lion Throne for himself, making Arrakis the center of the universe. But even though he is seen as a god by some, a new conspiracy against him arises which sets in motion a plot filled with political agendas and tactics. The main point is that Paul Muad'dib is aware of the future and has to grapple with all that is to come, but he's also dealing with the consequences of his actions in the first book. This makes it a book filled with angst. One can also feel the sense of impending doom in Frank Herbert's writing.

I'm reminded of Harry Potter in the Order of the Phoenix. Here, however, the main character is a political and religious figure dealing with the wishes of a trophy wife, the one who permitted him to reach the throne, the wishes of his true love, the return of an old friend, resuscitated by the Bene Tleilax, a society where genetically-engineered Face Dancers follow an agenda of their own, the ever-present Jihad blowout, and overall his own prescience, which is made to seem like a curse. In that way and despite of its title, Paul is seen as a Messiah but much of the book centers around his human point of view, his difficulties, his impassivity.

Dune Messiah was much more concise and to the point than Dune, but none of the story's magic was lost on me. However, this book felt as if a transition to another, more grand plot, and as a reader it was a nasty experience. Entering the mind of such a haunted character and knowing all the tragedy about to unfold made this a sad, depressing book, but in a weirdly good way. That's when one, as a reader, knows the level of attachment only a great author can instill through his words. I only wish this book was longer, like Dune, and showed more of the life during those 12 years that have passed. I missed certain characters that populated the first book, and the glimpses into a society that looks so foreign to me that Herbert constructed so well before.

I will now take a break from this world to come back with fresh eyes.


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