The Godmakers by Frank Herbert
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
If I could totally pick a non-Dune book of Frank Herbert's to point at and say, "Hey, this one is all kinds of cool and fantastic!" It'd be this one.
If I needed to point to any of his non-Dune books and say, "OMG this one short novel connects all the main themes of the Dune Chronicles in a rather non-Dune way, focusing on the mechanics and propaganda and elements of religion in a possibly deeper way than the Chronicles!" I'd also nod at this book.
But here's the really interesting aspect:
Being a big fan of the Dune series, including Brian and Kevin's part in it, I read Godmakers with an eye to the deep-past, nearing the Butlerian Jihad with huge Psi talents, a nearly random confluence of events, and mysticism. I kept reading about the events here with the rediscovery of lost planets, the hints of travel through mind-powers, the alien intelligences, and the opening of awareness in a very different light.
Almost as if this was proto-guild navigation. Or the pre-prelude to the eventual AI takeover.
Please forgive me, true-fans. I like to think about these kinds of confluences in terms of Herbert's massive future history. Because -- let's make no bones about it -- his Future History is massive, complex, and wonderful. I see things in this book that tie directly to the last couple of novels that are supposed to capstone Herbert's original cycle.
I'd love to see someone truly tie that together. Or perhaps they already did. (Brian and Kevin)
I totally recommend this book, however. We don't see SF like this much at ALL anymore. Either subject or how it is handled.
Go big or go home.
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