The climactic finale of the Great Schools of Dune Trilogy, set 10,000 years before Frank Herbert’s classic DUNE.
NAVIGATORS OF DUNE is a fascinating portal into vital components of the mesmerizing, intense universe of Dune.
Every DUNE fan knows of the Spacing Guild’s mysterious Navigators, the Bene Gesserit Sisterhood program to breed a superhuman, and the Mentats, trained as human computers to replace forbidden thinking machines. But until now, readers knew little of how they came to be.
Navigators, mutated by spice into beings far superior to normal humans, make space travel possible across the burgeoning Imperium. Their prescient awareness allows them to foresee safe paths through the universe as starship engines “fold” space. Only industrial magnate Josef Venport knows the secret of creating Navigators, and he intends to build a commercial empire to span the galaxy.
But at every turn Josef is embattled by the forces of anti-technology fanaticism, “Butlerian” zealots led by the charismatic and dangerous Manford Torondo, who wishes to countermand humanity’s new renaissance and drive the Imperium back into a dark age. And between those titanic forces stands the uncertain new Emperor Roderick Corrino, forced to take the throne after the assassination of his brother. The Navigators are the key to charting a glorious future for humanity . . . or the end of civilization.
In this campy finale to Herbert and Anderson's prequel trilogy, set 10,000 years before the start of Frank Herbert's Dune, the players clash in battle over control of the galaxy-wide Imperium. The authors set up a power-play scenario that now feels quite familiar: Emperor Roderick of the Imperium faces off against the Stalinesque entrepreneur Josef Venport; Manford Torondo, head of the fanatical Butlerians; and Valya Harkonnen, Mother Superior of the powerful Sisterhood. Meanwhile, House Atreides and House Harkonnen continue their blood feud, while cyborgs called Navigators exert strong influence over the galaxy's fate. The bad guys are deliciously evil, there's a dollop of an improbable but operatic love story, and destruction occurs on an epic scale as nothing less than the galaxy's fate is at stake. Readers shouldn't expect nuanced characters, dialogue, or prose, and the story is slow to get off the ground, but once it's going, it concludes with a bang that's likely to satisfy fans. Naturally, the story leaves the door open for a sequel.
The repeating of stuff from previous books is dominant and boring, but also inconsistent with the original and insulting to those who read them. Added to that the characters make stupid decisions and are supposed to pretend they are unaware if facts they definitely knew.
Didn’t bother finishing it.