Finished my first book of 2005 while at MacWorld last week. It was House Atreides by Brian Herbert & Kevin Anderson.
This is the first prequel to the Dune books written by Frank Herbert’s son. It was a little slow starting, but once it got going it was pretty good. The scope was large like the original Dune. The story centers around Duke Leto Atreides, but includes the origins of other characters like Duncan Idaho and the Emperor. There is actually a lot of background as you would expect. Little things in the Dune books, like why is Duke Harkonnen so fat, have fascinating backgrounds.
As the book went on I thought it would end at the beginning of Dune, but I was wrong. It is the first of a trilogy that are leading to Dune. I’m not sure I want to read the next one because it is focused on Harkonnen and I hear very harsh.