This volume collects two short stories: Blood of the Sardaukar and Whispers of a Caladan Sea.
In the first sorry, we follow along with a commander of the Sardaukar forces the night they were deployed against House Atreides. We discover that he originally had a deep hatred for Duke Paulus, who spoke up and eventually went to battle agains the commander’s father, who was the noble of the planet of Borhees. The House Atreides seized the planet, while the children of the noble family were conscripted into becoming deadly Sardaukar.
In the second story, we come upon a group of Atreides soldiers who were ordered into the caves to protect the stores of supplies hidden inside. They become trapped during the battle of Arrakeen and know there is no survival. The men ask Vitt to tell them a tale and distract them from their impending doom. Vitt is of an ancient line of Jungleurs, storytellers with powers like the Bene Gesserit, power to make their words come alive and entrance their listeners. Vitt bids the group to remember the sea on Caladan, and all the treasures it held, as their oxygen slowly runs out.
These were both pretty interesting stories, but the art in the second story was a little too rough at times for my taste. Neither of these stories really moved along the main plot of anything, and it was a little jarring to go the House Atreides comics, which happen before Leto becomes Duke, to these tales, which take place as the Atreides house is being expelled from Arrakis. The next set of comics, House Harkonnen, also takes place before Leto moves to Arrakis, so the placement of these Tales seems odd. There definitely could have been some side-stories created that linked more into the House Atreides comics that would have given welcome insight into what else was happening on the planets and in the Emperor's Court.
Unless there are some really die hard Dune readers in the library, this might be one to skip over in favor of the more illuminating House comics.
Sara's Rating: 6/10
Suitability Level: Grades 11-12
Reviews of previous volumes in this series: House Atreides vol 1, vol 2, vol 3
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Publication Date: May 24, 2022
ISBN: 9781684157709 (Hardcover)
Tags: Rating: 6/10, Suitability: High School, Comicbooks, Science Fiction, Action Adventure, BOOM! Studios
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