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Tales of the Old World (Warhammer) [Paperback]

Marc Gascoigne , Christian Dunn
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

2 April 2007 Warhammer
Repeating the winning formula established by "Let the Galaxy Burn", this bumper anthology unites classic short stories with brand-new tales. It is an attractive package that will appeal to Warhammer fans and all lovers of great fantasy fiction.

Product details

  • Paperback: 768 pages
  • Publisher: The Black Library (2 April 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844164527
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844164523
  • Product Dimensions: 27.9 x 1 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 690,474 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By Mao
This anthology is a good way of acquainting yourself with the writing style of some of the more prolific authors (Gav Thorpe and Robert Earl feature heavily) as well as lesser known writers at BlackLibrary (Rjurik Davidson, Ben Chessell).

"Tales of the Old World" is a diverse and quick introduction to the Warhammer World: it's lands, peoples and various trepidations. The diverse narratives tell of Bretonnia, the Empire, Lustria (thus not just of the Old World), give accounts of marauders, Grail knights and the temptations of Chaos, among others.

Reading a short story every now and then (mostly between other books), I have come across authors whose themes and styles I prefer (such as the two adventures of Grunnsonn's marauders by Andy Jones) over others', which, I venture, will have an effect on my future purchase preferences.

The anthology is divided into seven themes, with five short stories respectively (six under 'Madness and Ruin')

(1) Tales of Honour and Heroism

(2) Tales of Adventure and Mystery

(3) Tales of Revenge and Betrayal

(4) Tales of Deceit and Obsession

(5) Tales of Tragedy and Darkness

(6) Tales of Death and Corruption

(7) Tales of Madness and Ruin

At the end of the book, there is a brief blurb about each of the featured authors, which I found quite interesting.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tasty selection, but the odd strawberry cream! 2 Jan 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Let me start by explaining why I've given this book 4 stars rather than 5... simply because, with any collection of short stories, you're always going to find ones that don't appeal to you. Just like that tin of chocolates your Auntie Mabel got you for Christmas, there's always something nobody likes much, and it's usually the strawberry creams. Fortunately, there aren't enough strawberry creams in here to spoil it. And the rest is high quality. Some of it is exquisite! Each story is placed in a loose category which I won't bother listing, because a previous reviewer did that perfectly well already. Suffice to say that even when you know pretty much the general tone of the story from the section heading, there are enough surprises to keep you guessing.
Some of these tales are fun, describing seat-of-your-pants adventuring, others are dark and despairing, as noble souls falter in the face of evil. Some of them depict a never say die optimism, yet others a grim determination to give a good account before the inevitable gruesome end. Essentially, it's everything you expect from the Warhammer setting. And there's a lot of it too, so you can put it down and pick it up again as you fancy, or consume it all in one go, like that tin of choccies!
So my recommendation would be to enjoy this high quality feast, and don't be put off by the odd strwberry cream!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An interesting view of the Old World 7 Jun 2007
I have mainly read War Hammer 40k novels recently so I bought this to gain an introduction to the fiction of the Warhammer Fantasy world.

In some ways it wasn't quite what I expected. The description on the back of the book seems to suggest (to me at least) that the stories will be about huge wars and pitched battles raging across the old world. However, there was not one story involving huge armies of troops fighting a great battle. There were some battles, but they were small in nature and did not form part of a greater war or campaign. In other words, they were treated more as events affecting the main characters in each story.

However, the stories are quite decent and worth the read. Many of them cover common themes, such as knights on a quest and witch hunters investigating suspicious happenings. But other stories cover some of the other races, such as the high and dark elves and the dwarves (albeit there is only one story covering each of these). If there is one critisism is that the protagonists in all but a couple of stories deal with the civilised races; mainly men from the empire and Bretonnia. There are only a couple of stories where the protagonists are from the dark powers, such as the undead or chaos.

It would have been nice if we could have read more stories from the darker races such as orcs, skaven or chaos point of view. It would be nice to get a better feel of how these races live and interact with each other, rather than only reading about life in the human settlements all the time. But in the stories here, they are treated as the "enemy", rather than being given the role of the protagonist. In fact there is only one story involving orcs, but the main heros in that story are Dwarves and men.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very nice Book 26 Dec 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This was a Christmas present, so I'm sorry I can not tell you If it was enjoyed. But I an sure he did.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Middle of the Road 27 May 2009
By KSABER - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
"Tales of the Old World" is a collection of thirty six short stories set in Games Workshops's Fantasy Warhamer setting. It's published by Black Library, Games Workshop's own publishing branch.

As I've come to expect from Black Library publications, the stories vary widely in quality, ranging from badly written hack'n'slash cliche stuff, to some nice tales of mystery, horror, and adventure. The purpose of these stories is to entertain, and as far as I'm concerned, they've mostly succeeded. For that, and for the fact it's set in a fantasy world many of us have come to know and love, "Tales of the Old World" on the whole is worth reading and gets solid 3.5 stars from me.

That being said, this collection contains two 5 star stories, both of which have to them far more philosophical depth then one could expect in a Black Library publication, or, indeed, in many "high brow" books we see nowadays. These two stories are "Who Mourns a Necromancer" and "Totentanz". They both deal with the way life and death interact, and both do so in an unique manner that leaves the reader with a lot of food for thought. "Totentanz" in particular begins as a humorous satire of fantasy cliches, but ends like a black comedy, leaving the reader depressed and bewildered. You should read these two stories, even if you have no interest in the rest of the collection.

It's worth mentioning that the binding of "Tales of the Old World" is very poor. Constant handling causes the book to gradually fall apart. I had the same problem with "The Vampire Genevieve" collection, so I suppose it's just the way Black Library makes its books. A pity.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome 29 July 2008
By Brett A. Thompson - Published on Amazon.com
I wish these weren't short stories!

Great book and well worth the read for those lore junkies out there.

There are a few 'ok' stories but the awesome ones more than make up for it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Weak collection 31 Mar 2011
By desertrider - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I found most of the stories to be mediocre and forgettable. None of the stories seemed especially good. A few were decent but nothing special. I have read better anthologies in the Warhammer series.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great short stories 3 Oct 2010
By R. Lambert - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a great compilation of various warhammer fantasy short stories. Be advised that if you already own the other warhammer omnibus novels then you will have already read about half of these stories.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 2 Aug 2014
By tim roberts - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
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