Heretics of Dune - Frank Herbert

“Bureaucracy destroys initiative. There is little that bureaucrats hate more than innovation, especially innovation that produces better results than the old routines. Improvements always make those at the top of the heap look inept. Who enjoys appearing inept?”

~ Spoilers for God Emperor of Dune ~

Heretics of Dune is the fifth book of Frank Herbert's Dune series, first published in 1984. After the fall of the God Emperor of Dune, Leto Atreides II, the world continues to exist as new generations of old and new groups are emerging from the ruin of Leto's empire. Fifteen hundred years had passed and people that fled from the known universe to survive came back with a strange new power to seek the control of a mysterious power in the form of a little girl named Sheeana who could control the sandworms of Rakis.

This book is certainly a huge step down from the previous books. I'm starting this book hoping to see another niche and wonderful things from the Dune universe, but instead most of what I got is just copies from the previous stories. The Duncan Idaho ghola is one annoying constant that I got tired of the most. Of course there are things that made this version different, but it gets old quite fast for me. I was hoping we could've spent more time with Sheeana herself, but it's too much to ask for apparently.

Aside from that, the writer manages to expand the lore of his universe even more in this book. The Bene Gesserit and Bene Tleilaxu took most of the stage as their history and powers are explored a lot here. While it's still fascinating to learn, most of them felt really flat to me as I couldn't care less about any of the characters from both groups. The one character that I'm quite interested in is Miles Teg, but he didn't get too much of a spotlight.

There's one book left from the series. I have to see it to the end and I am hoping desperately that the story gets better in the final book.

Heretics of Dune
Frank Herbert
First Published
April 1, 1984