Customer Review

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not so good., 3 Nov. 2011
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This review is from: Battle for the Abyss (The Horus Heresy) (Paperback)
This is the first Horus Heresy book where I actually skim-read sections.

The first half of the book is really quite dull, strangely so considering the majority of it's an aggressive navel engagement. However as soon as the Warp starts giving them trouble and we meet the monsters it's apparent that Counter's very skilled at describing psychic elements, from denizens of the Warp, to the Warp itself.

The last third of the book, if you can disengage your sense of disbelief long enough to ignore the enormous unlikelihood of events, is actually very engaging. By this point the characters are a little more interesting since you feel you've known them for so long, an element of which comes from the fact the first half of the book drags along for so long you feel like you've been reading it for months.

The good parts of the book: The Thousand Sons character steals the story and runs off with it, frankly. I really, really wish there could have been more of him in it, as he was the most well-realised character in the entire thing. It's worth reading the book just for him if you're a Thousand Sons fan.

The bad parts of the book: The characterisation. There isn't any. Each marine, barring the Thousand Son, is a straight out stereotype of the most obvious facets of their chapter. The World Eater's a bloodthirsty barbarian. The Ultramarine is by the book (And incredibly angsty about it). The Space Wolf gets drunk and hits things. All the time. Any opportunity to show some depth to the characters is passed up in favour of...I'm not really sure. It's just completely ignored mostly.

The Word Bearers. I'm pretty sure they're not supposed to be quite this stupid and inept. I don't even like that legion and I was offended on their behalf!

The plot. Full of enormous logic holes. How do three Astartes scupper the chances of a ship full of an entire chapter's worth of their brethren plus their cadre of pet psychers? I'm not sure, but I'd be surprised if it was how they did it in this book.

Rating: 2 stars, because the characterisation is appalling, the plot is shaky, but the final 100 pages of action and the Thousand Sons character are very good.
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