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Betrayer (The Horus Heresy) Paperback – 26 Sep 2013

3.9 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: The Black Library; paperback / softback edition (26 Sept. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849704961
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849704960
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 2.6 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 34,127 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Aaron Dembski-Bowden is a British author with his beginnings in the videogame and RPG industries. He's written several novels for the Black Library, including the Night Lords series, the Space Marine Battles book Helsreach and the New York Times bestselling The First Heretic for the Horus Heresy. He lives and works in Northern Ireland with his wife Katie, hiding from the world in the middle of nowhere. His hobbies generally revolve around reading anything within reach, and helping people spell his surname.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
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 "Angel Exterminatus"

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!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm a fan of the Horus Heresy series and a big fan of Dembski-Bowden who is one of the outstanding writers in the Black Library stable. His writing here is of his usual high calibre with punchy, immersive battle scenes and some excellent characterisation but the problems with the novel are too big to ignore. Some minor spoilers below -

One of the highlights is his sympathetic portrayal of rebellious primarchs Angron and Lorgar. They are shown to be warm, thoughtful, intelligent beings, neither of whom believes they are evil but rather are victims of desecration of their honour by the emperor and the Butcher's nails (Angron) or doing what is necessary to lay bare the emperor's lies and reveal an, albeit unpalatable, truth (Lorgar). Their monstrousness is more subtly revealed by the barely mentioned but obvious fact that the background to their actions is the destruction of civilizations and the ending of billions of ordinary human lives, which they seem barely to notice in pursuit of their personal desires. The background to why Lorgar and Angron are as they are is explored and draws the chain of events leading to the heresy past Horus' vanity and Erebus' machinations back to the Emperor's own actions more potently in this book than in most of the others in the series.

Battle highlights are the titan battles and void combat. There are also great non-combat plotlines such as the continuation of Argal Tal's storyline in an unexpected but satisfying direction and the development of Kharn. There are great new characters such as Lotara Sarrin the world eaters flag-captain and other human and mechanicum characters.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Betrayer is great!

Before saying anything more, Please PLEASE double check which format you are buying this in - Trade Paperback or Mass Market Paperback! It'll really look different on your shelf (people often want a matching collection), and the price is different too.

Onto the book:
Betrayer serves as a sequel to a few previous Horus Heresy novels: The First Heretic, Aurelian, Know No Fear, and even Battle for the Abyss.

The plot revolves around Lorgar and his Word Bearers on a crusade against the Ultramarines alongside Angron and his crazed World Eaters. The crusade has been raging for a while and Ultramar is getting destroyed from within, but the effects are taking their toll - Angron is slowly dying as the "Butcher's Nails" take over control, and Lorgar is seeking to save him.

The reason this book is great is because of its POV characters, namely: Kharn, Argel Tal, Lhorke (a dreadnought who is awoken to discover the Heresy has begun) and especially Lotara Sarrin, the ships captain. She provides a more human perspective to what transpires as each Legion brings their unique characteristics to the tale.

I can't reveal too much more as it may give it away, but it is a must read for fans of the Horus Heresy.

However, there are a few criticisms:
*This book makes hardly any reference to the audio drama "Butcher's Nails", yet is meant to serve as a direct sequel to it.
*There is a discussion about a battle where the Word Bearers/World Eaters discuss facing "a billion" men.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
First the bad. Black Library, please stop delaying the mass market paperback for so long. People who have followed and collected the series since the beginning are the ones missing out because of this. I'm close to giving up completely. I'm not going to start paying double and having the wrong sized book on my shelf just because you want to milk the fans even more.

Also, stop releasing short story collections and stories that don't move the story forward, just to make an extra few quid. Thanks!

That said, this is an excellent HH novel. One of the best, by in my opinion the best writer to work on the series. Lorgar and Angron are maybe two of the more interesting primarchs, and Angron in particular is characterised brilliantly in this book. You will be confused when you being to sypathise with a psychopathic beserker who is massacring everyone in sight.

The book also contains some of the most human and emotional writing to be found in the entire GW canon, and it really works.
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