Dune Messiah is a science fiction novel by Frank Herbert, the second in a series of six novels. It was originally serialized in Galaxy magazine in 1969.
This sequel to Dune explores new developments on the desert planet Arrakis, with its intricate social order and its strange threatening environment. Twelve years after the events described in Dune, Paul Atreides [Ed. note: played by Euan] rules as Emperor of the Known Universe, following a universal jihad he unleashed by accepting the role of Messiah to the Fremen. While Paul is the most powerful Emperor ever known, he is ironically powerless to stop the lethal religious excesses of the juggernaut he has created.
Paul's death is conspired between several characters including the princess Irulan, his wife, the Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohaim, Scytale, a Tleilaxu Face Dancer and Edric, a Guild Steersman.
As part of their plot, Duncan Idaho is revived by the Tleilaxu as a ghola named Hayt to infiltrate Paul's confidence and set about his demise. Paul must decide who his allies are in this plot thick novel and also concern himself for the future of his children that Chani carries.
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The character played by Euan
The Paul Atreides of the first Dune book is all but gone. In his place is a man fighting his own future, Muad'dib. Where he once embraced his prescient visions, now he abhors them. Every step of his life is played out for him, before it happens. He is the ultimate oracle.
He, unsatisfied with the role of oracle and god-head, desperately seeks to find a vision where he can say: "There! There's an existence which couldn't hold me. See! I vanish! No restraint or net of human devising can trap me ever again. I renounce my religion! This glorious instant is mine! I'm free!" Unfortunately, he knows that even that moment of selfishness causes the Golden Path to waver and so he continues on, in order to save humankind from destruction.
In Dune Messiah, we see Paul fall into the role of the tragic hero. Life contains no mystery for him and being forced to follow his own visions ultimately causes his downfall.
About the author
Frank Herbert was born in Tacoma, Washington, and studied at the University of Washington, Seattle. He worked a wide-variety of jobs—including newspaper reporter and editor, political speechwriter, university professor, TV cameraman, radio commentator, oyster diver, jungle survival instructor, lay analyst, and creative writing teacher—before becoming a full-time writer. His first sf story was published in 1952 but he achieved fame more than ten years later with the publication in Analog of “Dune World” and “The Prophet of Dune” that were amalgamated in the novel Dune in 1965.
About the Dune books
Dune was first published in several installments in the magazine Analog. The first segment, "Dune World," appeared in 1963–1964, and the second, "The Prophet of Dune," in 1965. The original novel Dune was followed by five sequels written by Frank Herbert, which detailed the epic role of the people of Arrakis ("Dune") in the galactic history: Dune Messiah (1969), Children of Dune (1976), God Emperor of Dune (1981), Heretics of Dune (1984) and Chapterhouse Dune (1985).
Some time after Herbert's death, Herbert's son, Brian Herbert, along with author Kevin J. Anderson, wrote further books set in the universe of Dune, filling in the history before the beginning of the original novel with six "prequel" novels, and then continuing the original Dune history with a two-novel continuation.
Dune won the Nebula Award for Best Novel in 1965 and shared a Hugo Award for Best Novel in 1966.
Cinema and television
Read about cinema and television adaptations on the Dune page.
Dune Messiah the audio book
Release date: October 2nd 2007.
Pre-order the Dune Messiah audio book from Amazon.com