Heretics of Dune

related topics
{god, call, give}
{war, force, army}
{son, year, death}
{theory, work, human}
{ship, engine, design}
{specie, animal, plant}
{woman, child, man}
{math, energy, light}
{government, party, election}
{day, year, event}
{group, member, jewish}
{service, military, aircraft}
{build, building, house}
{system, computer, user}
{village, small, smallsup}

Heretics of Dune is a 1984 science fiction novel by Frank Herbert, fifth in a series of six novels. It was ranked as the #13 hardcover fiction best seller of 1984 by The New York Times.[1]

Plot introduction

Fifteen hundred years have passed since the 3,500-year reign of the God Emperor Leto Atreides II ended with his assassination; humanity is firmly on the Golden Path, Leto's plan to save mankind from destruction. By crushing the aspirations of humans for over three thousand years, Leto caused the Scattering, an explosion of humanity into the rest of the universe upon his death. Now, some of those who went out into the universe are coming back, bent on conquest. Only the Bene Gesserit perceive the Golden Path, and are faced with a choice: keep to their traditional role of hidden manipulators, quietly easing tensions and guiding human progress while struggling for their own survival, or embrace the Golden Path and push humanity onward into a new future where humans are free from the threat of extinction.

Plot summary

Much has changed in the millennium and a half since the death of the God Emperor. Sandworms have reappeared on Arrakis (now called Rakis) and renewed the flow of the all-important spice melange to the galaxy. With Leto's death, a hugely complex economic system built on spice collapsed, resulting in millions leaving known space in a great Scattering. A new civilization has risen, with three dominant powers: the Ixians, whose no-ships are capable of piloting between the stars and are invisible to outside detection; the Bene Tleilax, who have learned to manufacture spice in their axlotl tanks and have created a new breed of Face Dancers; and the Bene Gesserit, a matriarchal order of subtle political manipulators who possess superhuman abilities. However, people from the Scattering are returning with their own peculiar powers. The most powerful of these forces are the Honored Matres, a violent society of women bred and trained for combat and the sexual control of men.

On Rakis, a girl called Sheeana has been discovered who can control the giant worms. The Bene Gesserit intends to use a Tleilaxu-provided Duncan Idaho ghola to gain control of this sandrider, and the religious forces of mankind who they know will ultimately worship her. The Sisterhood have subtly been altering the gholas to bring their physical reflexes up to modern standards. The Bene Gesserit leader, Mother Superior Taraza, brings Miles Teg to guard the new Idaho. Taraza also sends Reverend Mother Darwi Odrade to take command of the Bene Gesserit keep on Rakis. Odrade is a loose cannon; she does not obey normal Bene Gesserit prohibitions about love, and is also Teg's biological daughter. Bene Gesserit Imprinter Lucilla is also sent by Taraza to bind Idaho's loyalty to the Sisterhood with her sexual talents. However, Lucilla must deal with Reverend Mother Schwangyu, head of the ghola project but also the leader of a faction in the Bene Gesserit who feel gholas are a danger.

Above the planet Gammu, Taraza is captured and held hostage by the Honored Matres aboard an Ixian no-ship. The Honored Matres insist Taraza invite Teg to the ship, hoping to gain control of the ghola project. Teg manages to turn the tables on the Matres, and rescues the Mother Superior and her party. An attack is then made on Sheeana on Rakis, which is prevented by the intervention of the Bene Gesserit. Odrade starts training Sheeana as a Bene Gesserit. At about the same time an attempt is made on the life of Idaho, but Teg is able to defeat it. Teg flees with Duncan and Lucilla into the countryside. In an ancient Harkonnen no-globe, Teg proceeds to awaken Idaho's original memories, but does so before Lucilla can imprint Duncan and thus tie him to the Sisterhood. In the meantime, Taraza has been searching for Teg and his party, and finally establishes contact. During the operation, however, Teg and his companions are ambushed. Teg is captured while Lucilla and Duncan escape. Teg is tortured by a T-Probe, but under pressure discovers a new ability: he is able to speed up his physical and mental reactions, which enables him to escape. At the same time, Idaho is ambushed and taken hostage.

Full article ▸

related documents
Champion of the Universe
Quenta Silmarillion
The Two Towers
The Night's Dawn Trilogy
Ramesses III
The Great Hunt
The Return of the King
Magnus Maximus
Lonely Mountain