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God Emperor Of Dune: The Fourth Dune Novel Paperback – 13 Mar 2003

4.2 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Gollancz; New Ed edition (13 Mar. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0575075066
  • ISBN-13: 978-0575075061
  • Product Dimensions: 11.6 x 3.6 x 17.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 19,816 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


?A fourth visit to Arrakis that is every bit as fascinating as the other three?every bit as timely.? ?"Time" ?Rich fare?Heady stuff.? ?"Los Angeles Times" ?Book Four of the Dune series has many of the same strengths as the previous three, and I was indeed kept up late at night.? ?"Challenging Destiny"

Book Description

The epic that began with the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning classic DUNE continues . . .

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
God Emperor of Dune's reputation precedes it. Even in the context of a series of sequels that are generally perceived to be of lower quality than the original Dune, the fourth book in Frank Herbert's sci-fi saga still manages to distinguish itself in most people's minds as the series' plodding, self-indulgent and pretentious nadir. Certainly, it's hard to avoid the sense that Herbert is testing his readers' goodwill here, smuggling his grand statement on the workings of humanity into a mass-market sci-fi paperback with a garish cover. Nonetheless there is something undeniably appealing about God Emperor of Dune's extremism, its refusal to play to the gallery.

Leto II, who at the end of Children of Dune had accepted an irreversible and slow metamorphosis into a sandworm in order to pursue the mysterious `golden path,' is now thousands of years old, rules over the universe with meticulous despotism, and bears a more than passing physical resemblance to Jabba the Hutt. Bored and desperate for humanity to finally show itself capable of surviving on its own by escaping his prescient visions and deposing him, he is delighted to discover that the latest product of his Atreides breeding programme cannot be seen by prescience. This sets the stage for what is, essentially, a philosophical dialogue bolted awkwardly to a medieval courtly drama.

The latter provides what little plot can be found here, with a not particularly convincing love triangle between the autocratic God Emperor, a saintly young woman genetically designed to tempt Leto's increasingly diminished humanity, and the brash head of Leto's military - the latest in a long line of clones taken from the dead flesh of Duncan Idaho, the Atreides swordmaster that featured prominently in the first three books.
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By A Customer on 24 Mar. 2001
Format: Paperback
I have read only the first four books of the Dune series so far, having started 'Heretics' a short while ago. This one however was the one i least enjoyed. The book essenetially revolves around Leto Atredies (the 'tyrant') and seems very flat as a result. In the other books there was at least a sense of conflict whereby Herbert would tell the story from different perspectives, but some of the philosophical ramblings of Leto leave The characters constantly asking questions that are never answered, leaving the reader's mind in tangles. Too many scenes leave the talking to Leto and they seem to disappear up his backside completely while the rest of the characters are repeatedly forced to accept how 'marvellous' he is.
However, having said that it does still contain some excellent parts: the ending, the test of Siona, and the whole Ixian 'no-room' concept are fantastic, but the book has too many flaws to be as good as the others. The fact that Dune itself is no longer Dune, but an earthlike planet destroys the majesty of the place Herbert created in the first place. But the most frustrating thing is that fantastic characters like Harq Al-Ada and Ghani from the last (best) book Children Of Dune were crying out for a book of their own. These just disappear as the story skips 3000 odd years to this date, leaving a feeling of frustration as new characters enter the fray who are, lets face it, not a patch on the first 3 books'.
A good, but -not- great offering. Writer's block, perhaps?
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Format: Paperback
This is a strange little book, and marks something of a metamorphosis rather like than experience by Leto in the novel: Frank Herbert's Dune novels change dramatically through the series, becoming more bloated as the author turns away from all his previous characters and settings by inserting a time gap of 3000 years. All the wonderful complex characters and the iconic features of Dune which brought the first book so much success are completely gone in this one, and what we have instead is a strange little tale moving at a very slow pace and lacking a strong plot. The character "Moneo" is excellent, but the rest of the new characters are fairly soulless and underdeveloped.
It's essentially an in-depth look at the Imperial inner circle established by Leto at the end of Children of Dune. As ever, Frank Herbert tells the story largely through little soliloquies while characters talk with one another, though in this novel the boredom factor is upped considerably because there's only a handful of characters and the dialogue is frequently ambushed by Leto's incessant philosophical musing. The intellectual/philosophical aspects of Herbert's scifi world are incorporated far less subtly than in previous books, though Herbert's ideas are still fresh and intriguing - this novel answers the questions raised in the previous three books about what the Atreides' "Golden Path" for humanity entails.
Unfortunately it raises more questions than answers - just like Children of Dune, this book has been deliberately set up for a further sequel. Quite unsatisfying when you consider the amount of explaining and talking that goes on - Herbert tends to indulge in a deliberate obfuscation of the facts in his stories that can become annoying.
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By Jane Aland VINE VOICE on 4 April 2006
Format: Paperback
This 4th novel in Frank Herbert's Dune series is curious, in that it is simultaneously a radical departure from the previous novels while still retaining many familiar elements. The background characters and settings (which after the previous 3 novels were starting to feel a little worn out) have mostly been jettisoned by setting this over 3,000 years after the preceding novels, with the surviving God-Emperor Leto transformed into a hybrid of human and worm, and Arrakis itself now all but absent of the deserts that gave it the name Dune. These differences help inject some new life into the series, but memories of the previous novels are evoked by the re-animated corpse of Duncan Idaho and the basic structure concerning Leto's self-deification harks back to Paul Atreides. The main storyline is concerned with Leto's plan to ensure the future of the human race, both by his breeding programme and his setting a negative example with his tyrannical rule. God Emperor of Dune is an intelligent and often thought-provoking read, but readers looking for action will be disappointed as this is very much a cerebral entry to the series. The fact that over 90% of the novel is comprised of political and philosophical discussions between Leto and other characters can make this a rather static book at times, and while beguiling Herbert's use of language can obfuscate his characters intentions to a confusing degree, but all in all this is a good solid continuation of Herbert's future history of mankind.
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