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[Editor's Note: This article was originally published as Science Fiction Geek Love on Brandi's blog.]
As part of our two-year courtship beginning in 1998, Randin introduced me to the Dune series by Frank Herbert. We read the books (yes, even God Emperor) and discussed them as a means of getting to know each other, and to give us something substantive to talk about on the phone besides “Oh I miss you” and “I miss you too.” At the time, I was managing the Miracle Manor Retreat in Desert Hot Springs, and he was living and working two hours away in San Diego. We would see each other every other weekend, more or less.
Anyway, these books are subtle and profound. They work on your mind in an most ingenious way, focusing your attention on the manipulations and objectives of choice, power, and fate rather than on the big show. We would laugh when time and time again we’d read hundreds of pages leading up to the machinations for a major battle, to which Herbert would dedicate a paragraph, before continuing with the next extraordinarily long stratagem. Perhaps the effect on the mind is cultivating patience!