on 9 April 2013
I won't add anything to the reviews of the book but be aware this paperback is OVERSIZE format - what is the point!??? it doesn't match my other 22 books and its the same for "betrayer"
Oversize hardbacks are one thing - but paperbacks are meant to be convenient.. i think the oversize format is just to justify the oversize price.. GW are becoming more and more expert in fleecing their loyal customers with selective releases, limited editions and a lack of kindle formats.
Its annoying. Come one GW - just let us fans have the stories we want as soon as they are ready.. My shelf collection is messed up unless i buy the book again.. Also the paperback editions should have the e-book editions bundled together. Again GW wants to make you pay twice for the same book in different formats. They are damaging the goodwill i have for GW after 25 years of being a fan!
on 2 April 2013
One thing that myself and most of my wargaming comrades love about the Horus Heresy series is the expansion of personal primarch “fluff”. In Angel exterminates we get this with Perturabo which to my mind is long overdue. In the book we get to see a deeper side to this fellow and see what makes him tick. What Graham McNeil has done is given him a personality more than this grumpy silent type who hates rogal dorn and loves smashing up buildings. He makes Perturabo human and that is one of the stand out aspects of the book. His interaction with his “sons” and most notably the “trident” is also interesting and Graham McNeil has pulled off a master stroke by linking this book to his 40K series of novels including Storm of Iron. Ive read some folk complain about this but I believe it’s a real treat as Storm… is one of his best books and so getting back detail about the main protagonists is a treat. IT also reveals who the Warsmith in that book is…..
In this book we also get Fulgrim and his emperors children who are turning more vile as the heresy unfolds and again that is a triumph as we get to see the interaction and the levels to which the respective legions have fallen. The story also rounds Fulgrim off well but I wont spoil it here!
From a loyalist perspective we get the iron hands with their allies who show up who offer a good aspect to the story again some good surprises on the loyalist side. Especially when a raven guard gets stuck into a certain Emperors Children legionary!
The sneaky elder also play their hand and as an imperial player of the games just wants to make me kill more of them. You just cant trust those pointy eared space elves!!!!!!
Overall I loved this book it got back to what makes the Horus Heresy stories really good. Plenty of back story plenty of action plenty of secrets divulged. We all know there has been some dodgy books but this isn’t one of them. For the eagle eyed I think McNeil has switched from using heavy metal lyrics to using stars wars lines………..
on 7 February 2013
An epic continuation into the Horus Heresy series, exploring a previously untouched legion and primarch. Purturabo is portrayed as a much more complicated and in depth character than ever before and geniunely touches the reader. The other legions are excellent depicted especially the Emperors Children who have slid into unredemable evil. The only issue for me is the baffling decision to release this book in papaerback format but hardback size, for which i have knocked off a star. Otherwise well worth it!
on 2 February 2013
Okay, due to the VERY ANNOYING new policy Black Library have instituted, I read this book months ago when it was released in the GW stores only, at which time we were unable to post reviews here. So I'm going on memory now overlaid with other books, including the next HH novel Betrayer.
Exterminatus is a good, enjoyable novel, it continues the story of Fulgrim, but more interestingly gives us a really good portrayal of Perturabo - who previously had a very thin and scant background and character. Here we see him as a noble architect at heart, forced into the role of a siege master and warlord. The Iron Warriors also get some good page time.
The story of the expedition into the Eye of Terror is handled well by and large, though perhaps begins to drag a little in places. Also, Fulgrim is so far fallen into Chaos now he often comes across as somewhat too much of a moustache twirling 'eeevil' bad guy.
I won't mark the novel itself down for the release policy, or the fact I was forced to buy it in 'collector's edition hardback' if I wanted to read it when it was released, but like the one star reviewer here I did find it very annoying. I'm not personally a fan of hardback novels, I find them unwieldy and uncomfortable to read, they break up the lines on my bookcase, and I prefer the feel and smell of a newly purchased paperback. Also these 'collector's editions' are double the price of course - which is clearly why BL have started this policy. Bloody annoying. But what are you going to do? Stop reading the HH books? I'm hooked unfortunately, so there you go...
on 31 January 2013
Seriously, I don't know how much more of this I am able to take. Lately, whenever I finish a novel by McNeil, I'm not sure whether I want to shout or sob. Apparently, McNeil has completely run out of ideas on new characters. Either that or he seems to labour under the misapprehension that all his readers are dying to find out everything about any character he has ever conceived.
In This novel, we meet Kroeger and Forrix. We find out who "The Warsmith" really is and even where Honsou came from. Am I missing somebody? Oh, yes we even meet Grendel. You know, that boring more-or-less-pointless character from "Dead Sky, Black Sun". And yes, Warsmiths Toramino & Berrossus are present as well. And everybody knows you've been DYING to learn more about THEM!
In other words, at the end of the novel we might just as well pack up and move on to the plot of "Storm of Iron".
Seriously, it has been 10,000 years...and all the protagonists are still alive and more or less in the same positions they have been during the Heresy? Nothing else happend? Footsloggers died in their thousands, but the officers are still around and kicking ten millenia later?
Another gripe I'm having with this book is that, once again, there are too many characters. I was looking forward to seeing the Iron Warriors giving their first serious appearance, but nope...there are Iron Hands, Raven Guard, Salamander, Imperial Fists and Emperors Children present as well, hogging the spotlight. And half the time McNeil seems to be uncertain as of what to do with them. Most of the time, they just feel like fillers. Until the end of the book, where it becomes downright stupid: once again, it seems that McNeil was running out of ideas as to how to let his characters survive without having the villains act like morons...but then he apparently decided that morons were underrated. Just like in "Chapter's Due" (and it annoyed the living feth out of me back then!)
On the bright side, the Iron Warriors do get some desperately needed background. They have always been amongst my favourite Traitor Legions, and it's good to see them get their due. McNeil isn't even half-bad at giving them their very own character as a Legion. Which is no small feat, considering that all the best ideas have already been taken.
The plot is...okay. Nothing special (actually pretty see-through), and you'll be pretty much able to foretell twists and "surprises", but I've seen worse. But I wonder...is "You could do worse" really that much of a recommendation?
All in all...if you skip this novel, you'll be okay. But if you want to see how the story of Fulgrim continues (yes, it's about the Phoenician...again...not Perturabo, but Fulgrim), wait for the paperback-edition. Save yourself some money.
on 8 February 2013
Ignore the book title, this novel is about Perturabo and the Iron Warriors, and his relationship with an increasingly lunatic Fulgrim, told as they embark on a mission to the Eye of Terror, and occurrs a while after the Dropsite Massacre.
Who's in it: Iron Warriors, Emperor's Children, Iron Hands, A Raven Guard, A Salamander, and Imperial Fists as early cannon fodder. Eldar feature, but in limited fashion.
There's plenty of quality here, there's a couple of hefty and decent scraps, and they only miss the high benchmark of Istvaan V scenes in Galaxy in Flames because of the smaller scale of the engagements. McNeill has always written decent fight scenes and they're here, for those of you who enjoy them. He gives a good account of the obvious meat-grinder marine versus marine scraps would be, and the book is worth it for a satisfying fight involving Lucius, and another between two dreadnoughts - one of which ends up squelched into "pink mist" as I recall - lovely.
There is some firm characterisation of the chief players among the Iron Warriors, who are painted as smart intuitive fighters, although their scenes lack the high level of banter and verbal interplay that made Dan Abnett's depiction of the Mournival so deep, vivid, and believable, and which is always what makes you care as a reader when they eventually rise up or fall down.
That's a general criticism which can be levelled at many books in the series - some authors forget or dont make enough of the basic tragedy of the HH, which is that guys who thought a great deal of each other, of friends within and across other legions now have good cause (many and varied causes) not to like one another very much at all. Even better, the legionaries who second guess their own betrayal. And the good authors detail that personal betrayal, in black and white, they dont just refer to it or leave it sitting between the lines. The novels; Thousand Sons, Fulgrim, the first trilogy all do it very well, but I actually thought I might be reading about a separatist legion in the Iron Warriors - seemingly choosing neither one side or another - as Perturabo doesn't seem too fussed about the great cause of rebellion, and the other characters just pay lip service.
I also agree with another reviewer here that someone at Black Library needs to reel in the authors writing about primarch Fulgrim before he becomes a characature - lets have more of the tortured soul, and less of the vaudeville villain, because he's becoming one-dimensional and it's undoing the fine work of the novel Fulgrim. There is a single tortured soul scene in this book which was the only point most readers will care what is going on with Fulgrim, then he trails off into hamming it up again.
Which is why this book gets three stars.
The problem here is that Fulgrim's path to ascent through visiting the Eye though interesting is not worth this book, it's worth a short story in one of Black Library's collections of small stories. The journey the two primarchs make is not, in and of itself, or any particular note.
McNeill does a sound job of painting Perturabo as a craftsman, an engineer, a warlord of sense, and a hard fighter. But then fails to pitch him against someone who really ends up costing him something, personally.
Fulgrim just does a lot of verbal nodding and winking, but we're told Perturabo immediately sees through his deceit - well then, so what? Its of no surprise when Fulgrim does eventually deceive him, so its an anti-climax. Lets have someone who really stitches Perturabo up and reinforces his belief hes better off out of the Imperium.
We get hints about his wider resentment as being seen as leading a legion seen as "diggers", and siege workers fit only for trench warfare by other primarchs but there's only all-too-brief glimpses of recounted interplay between Perturabo and his other brothers to flesh this out, not enough to let us as the reader 'feel his pain'.
I'm not a close student of the HH timeline, but getting in a loyalist primarch for a good verbal sparring between him and Dorn would have really dug into why Perturabo feels inclined to turn on the Emperor at all. Instead all we get is a tantilising glimpse. I think authors forget that when you genuinely lose a good friend through a deceit you feel that hot blood of betrayal pumping around your ears - the same when you read about it, like you do when the Mournival turn on Garviel Loken, or the Death Guard loyalists on Istvaan III are informed over the radio they're about to be virus bombed, and a marine dies in the arms of a brother dreadnought. The horror, the horror...
Anyway, decent book, but perhaps not the best choice in having Fulgrim rather than anyone else as the foil to Perturabo. Read it, enjoy it, enjoy the battle scenes and the fact perhaps we'll get another book with Perturabo which expands on the introduction he's given here.
on 23 February 2013
looking forward to this having been a fan of the seemingly emotionless Iron Warriors, Good mix of history and action. The only downside is it doesn't sit neatly with the rest of the volumes on the shelf as it is a much bigger format, I have a bit of a negative vibe that we were being tested to see if we will only buy hard backs rather than the paperbacks hence the delay and when it has come out its more expensive than the normal books
on 30 March 2013
Angel Exterminatus is an excellent addition to the HH Series. Peturabo is fleshed out, and surprisingly so, not as one dimensional as he has been historically viewed. A few great scenes are present in this book, with the subsequent development of Fulgrim as the biggest douche in the HH universe is compelling. Dont miss this one!
This is volume 23 of the Horus Heresy and it is supposed to be centred on Primarch Perturabo and his Iron Warriors' Legion. I was a bit disappointed by it, partly because I had high expectations after having read some of Graham McNeill's other books on the Horus Heresy (False Gods, Fulgrim, Mechanicum and A Thousand Sons), in particular, but also his stories on Honshu and the Iron Warriors.
Another - perhaps less subjective - reason for my disappointment, however, was that I was expecting to learn more about Perturabo, Olympia and the origins of the Iron Warriors than what is in the book. I didn't learn why Perturabo, master of siege craft, has become so dour, bitter and disenchanted. I didn't learn why he had to destroy his own planet. I didn't learn why he turned against the Emperor, and somehow got to believe that he had "betrayed" him. In fact, I didn't learn how he even became the master of siege craft and how he met with anf formed his legion.
Instead, I was "treated" with a plot in which Fulgrim, his brother-Primarch from the Emperor's Children always seems to threaten to take centre stage and relegate Perturabo as a secondary character. I was also treated with over abundant descriptions of the fast degenerating Emperor's Children and their mindless horrors and slaughters, including their Apothecary, the infamous Fabius Bile who makes "Doctor" Mengele looks like a little child.
Having mentioned this, we do get some interesting and much-needed insights into the Iron Warriors and Perturabo, but these are only glimpses and hints, mostly linked to previous stories published by the author where some of the characters which also appear in this volume are mentioned (such as Toramino, Grendel or Kroeger, to name just these). All of these insights, glimpses and hints are interesting and useful, especially since they provide background and explain some of the future relations between these characters but this is not enough to make a book.
Then there is the plot itself, with Fulgrim persuading Perturabo, against his better judgement and despite his suspicions, to lead an expedition into a great star maelstrom to recover destructive and very powerful xenos weaponry. Finally, Perturabo and his Iron Warriors go chasing after Fulgrim into the unknown, although I will stop there to avoid any spoilers. None of this seemed very convincing to me.
The overall impression I got from this book is that it is yet another filler with a number of glimpses, hints and "teasers" of what is to come in further Horus Heresy volumes. A typical example of that is a long - and rather excellent - scene where Perturabo and his senior officers simulate the attack of the Imperial complex on Terra. However, even when these bits and pieces are good, they cannot substitute for a real continuous story and can be somewhat annoying.
In fact, this book is essentially a sequel and a prequel, rather than a standalone volume that can be read separately from other Warhammer 41K or Horus Heresy books. It is clearly a sequel to Fulgrim and to The Isstvan V treason, with remnants of Iron Hands (and one Raven Guard) seeking retribution from Iron Warriors and the Emperor's Children. It is also a prequel of the attack on Terra, but also of Gragam McNeill's other volume featuring the Iron Warriors and Warsmith Honsou, in particular "Storm of Iron" and "Dead Sky, Black Sun".
This is the second time Graham McNeill has done this in a Horus Heresy novel - the first was with "The Outcast Dead." I hope he will not do it again, both because it is annoying and because it is no substitute for a decent and fully fledged plot...
on 26 February 2013
great series of novels get you hooked deep in the world of the primarchs and the history of warhammer 40k universe