WARNING: Ripping Book Reviews are solely the judgments of Professor VJ Duke on an unlucky book that has caused him much repulsion—in one way or another. Therefore, blame must be put on the professor and nobody else. With that in mind, read on—if you are brave enough to take it.
DUNE MESSIAH by FRANK HERBERT
Why an interest, you may ask?
Well, the answer is simple: Nothing ever, ever makes sense in this book. Yes, I fear it’s true.
In fact, here is a good rule to go by: If ever you find yourself in the extremely unlucky position of reading any of the Dune books by Herbert, be prepared for nothing to make sense.
It runs in the series, see.
And what can we expect from a man who would rather sharpen pencils than do most anything else?
“I’ve felt reluctant to write on some days… I’d much rather go fishing, for example, or go sharpen pencils…” — Frank Herbert
What a twerdlit.
Anyways and a few, apparently Frank had some trouble finding a publisher for the first book in the series, Dune.
It was rejected by around 20 publishers (for good reasons, I am quite sure), but the blasted thing managed to get published through Chilton Book Company.
Now the interest about Chilton Book Company is this: They were most famous for publishing auto-repair manuals.
How this works out, I’m not sure, but it’s obvious that Sterling E. Lanier (the editor) was looking for something entirely different in a manuscript.
And he found it in Herbert’s.
Now, Frank devoted all his time to writing in the ’60s. His wife supported him so he could do this.
Herbert said that the idea for Dune came to him one day when he was researching sand dunes for an article he was supposedly supposed to write. To help his wife out a bit, see.
He never finished the article; we got Dune instead.
What’s this tell us? Two things. One, Frank is a lazy shirker. Two, sand dunes fascinated him.
Onto the story like greased lightning!
Okay, Dune Messiah is the second book in the Dune series. Paul Muad’Dib (who has way worse problems than his name, believe it or not) has been emperor of Dune for about 12 years.
Now, by choosing to become a messiah to a group of miscreants who live on Dune, Paul has unleashed some sort of jihad that is never really spoken about in much detail.
It’s as if Frank doesn’t know much about it himself.
Has nothing to do directly with sand dunes, see.
Paul is a stupid, I fear. See, he wants to stop the jihad he’s started, because…
…well, it’s killed around 61 billion people.
Wow! That’s like wiping out–completely, mind you–the populations of around 8 to 9 earths.
Paul is a hazard, in truth. A danger to…planets.
He and his cronies even brag about it.
Paul says: “There’s another emperor I want you to note in passing–a Hitler. He killed more than six million. Pretty good for those days.”
Crony says: “Not very impressive statistics…”
Paul says: “Very good… I’ve killed sixty-one billion, sterilized ninety planets, completely demoralized five hundred others. I’ve wiped out the followers of forty religions…”
If he keeps talking like that, he’ll probably end up demoralizing Frank–if such a thing can be done.
So, that’s Paul: the main, hateful character.
And another thing should be mentioned:
Paul is sorta married to Chani. Sorta because he calls her his “concubine.”
Now, after Paul defeated the former emperor (before he started demoralizing planets), he had to formally marry Irulan–the daughter of the former emperor.
But it’s in name only, the marriage. Paul will not have any contact with Irulan.
Which makes Irulan mad since she wants a child.
So, to be spiteful, Irulan administers contraceptives to Chani through her food.
Why Irulan is in charge of feeding Chani we will never know.
Nor will Herbert, since it’s got nothing to do with sand dunes.
Anyways and then some, Paul is aware of what Irulan is doing (cause he just knows things) but he won’t stop her, because he’s foreseen that if Chani gives birth, she will die.
What an interest.
Then, one day, Chani finds out:
“Someone… has been feeding me a contraceptive for a long time…”
And Paul thinks: “Irulan prolonged your life, beloved. For you, the time of birth is the time of death.”
Humph noodles. You mean to tell me that if Chani conceives and gives birth, she’ll die? And that Paul has knowingly let her consume a contraceptive just so she won’t conceive and die?
Someone should smack Paul. It’s not as if she can conceive on her own, see. He obviously doesn’t care a wink for her.
For, when she finds out, she switches her diet, conceives and dies.
This, of course, drives Paul to his semi-death. And Irulan mourns him…
“…Princess Irulan. That one! …she swears she loved him…”
One would never know it.
Now, one more thing should be mentioned here.
Because of the contraceptive and all that, when Chani conceived it was said there would be problems with the birth.
So, to fix it, Chani had to…
“The medics tell me I must eat three or four times what I ate before… It goes too fast.”
3 or 4 times?!
Paul’s response is:
What he meant to say was “too fat.” But he was just being polite.
At one point, on one of the horribly pages of the book, one character says:
That’s something Herbert would’ve benefited from. Not only didn’t he have straight up now sense, I fear he never received any.