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Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

Just finished reading the Solar War, and I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. It was a very ambitious book and there was a lot going on, but the author (John French) pulled it off pretty well I thought. I was pretty enthusiastic to read some more. However, I felt similarly after I first read Horus Rising, and then I was quickly a bit let down by the books that follow after. The Heresy picks back up again, and there are some great books later on, but they're outnumbered by pretty poor offerings in my view. Do the next 5 Siege novels hold up? Guy Haley wrote the next one, and I hear people saying good things about him. Is it top tier or middle tier 40K novel offering? And then I see Gav Thorpe...not a fan. Am I alright to skip this one or has Gav done a good job on his novel? Does it involve eldar at all because I nope out of anything where he's writing Eldar. Dan Abnett did the next one and I've never read an Abnett novel I didn't enjoy, but I see some negativity about this one online. Is it any good?

Also, any idea how many books there will be? I never expected the Heresy to go for 50 odd books (and weirdly leave many legions with little to no coverage into the bargain!) but in practical terms I only needed to read the ones I liked because the heresy was big enough that I could completely ignore the Dark Angels without worrying too much. But given the Siege is a bit more limited in scope and probably won't have as much simultaneous narrative (the Heresy often jumped back in time or didn't worry about the timeline at all, because it was so big) I wonder if skipping books will leave it disjointed.

Anyway, any and all thoughts or impressions welcome!

   
Made in gb
Lit By the Flames of Prospero






Siege has been really good so far. Thorpe's First Wall is brilliant IMO and Saturnine is just amazing from start to finish.
You will get confused if you just skip whole books, I highly caution against this.
   
Made in gb
Fixture of Dakka







I'm pretty sure the initial proposal was for the Siege series to be either seven or eight novels, though I don't know if that has changed, and whether there is any ancillary material at this time.

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Made in gb
Lit By the Flames of Prospero






I never read anything that suggested the Siege series would be seven books long. It's on book 5 now and the Traitors have barely got past Lions Gate.
There are two side novels, one for the crew of the Sisypheum and one for Magnus.
   
Made in gb
Battlefield Professional




Nottingham, England

It’s 8 main books plus unspecified novella.

There was a GW article where they talked about planning it.

You need to read all of them otherwise it’ll be even harder to follow everything. By Mortis
Spoiler:
the traitor forces have reached the inner wall.
and there’s very little hope of relief.

We know the next book , Warhawk, is going to see the Khan make a desperate assault to change that, and obviously there are some other plots ongoing.

You can only start to see all these converging stories if you read them all.

The novellas are good but mixed. Magnus is essential , Sons interesting and links to the Primaris.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 Da Boss wrote:
I only needed to read the ones I liked because the heresy was big enough that I could completely ignore the Dark Angels without worrying too much.


This will end well

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/08/22 19:49:53


 
   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

8 main books sounds good to me. Okay, I'll commit and give Gav another chance! I can deal with one dodgy book if the rest is as good as the first or close too. Cool! I'm happy to have a sense that I'll get to finish off the heresy stuff with some quality reads. Been following the series since horus rising dropped!

   
Made in gb
Last Remaining Whole C'Tan






Is there a particularly pressing need to be up on the Heresy series before diving into the Siege?

Only I stopped buying when they started mucking about with the format, and really cannot be arsed to go back, re-read then catch up.

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Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

I didn't finish the Heresy before starting. I think some stuff would have more significance, and reading about the White Scars in the Siege made me want to go read their Heresy book (which I also enjoyed) but overall I didn't feel like I was really missing much. It does refer back to events from the first three books a fair bit, but I assume you've read those.

   
Made in gb
Lit By the Flames of Prospero






Mortis references Titandeath a lot, cos y'know it's about Titans.
   
Made in us
Land Raider Pilot on Cruise Control




AZ

So if you can get past Solar War then it’s great. It sounds like you liked it though so you are in for a treat. The second and third books were amazing. I like the series better than the Beast Arises and I loved the Beast series.



 
   
Made in us
Excited Doom Diver






I read only a handful of the horus heresy novels, but I absolutely love the siege of terra series. Sometimes things are mentioned i don't know, but most of the characters I can recognize, or get to know pretty quickly.

I couldn't get into the beast arises, but I also like the setting of the heresy more.

I'm also mainly listening to them via audiobook, as Johnathan Keeble is the voice of warhammer for me, and absolutely knocks the audiobooks out of the park.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/08/22 23:05:42


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Made in th
Regular Dakkanaut





Like the reat of the Heresy, the Siege is only good when done by the better writers in black library's stable

   
Made in pl
Tunneling Trygon





For me only the Solar War and Saturnine were a good read from the full novels plus fury of Magnus novella. The rest was either mediocre or bad, which pretty much makes this series the same as HH one or the rest of BL's output.
   
Made in us
Stealthy Grot Snipa





Atlanta, GA

Just finished reading the Solar War, and I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. It was a very ambitious book and there was a lot going on, but the author (John French) pulled it off pretty well I thought.


I actually had the opposite reaction, and felt that Solar War was the equivalent of "bolter porn, but with spaceships instead". Wasn't hugely impressed with it, and had to force myself to finish the book.
   
Made in gb
Bryan Ansell





Birmingham, UK

Ill chime in for Saturnine. Its a really good read especially as we really are at the stage of knowing how things pan out.


Mortis is also.......good. I skipped through(what I consider) the awful Perpetual subplot. Didn't much like how the 1st legion were introduced into the fray but think I may have to go back an read some of the DA based books and short stories/novellas?

Oh, and the Magnus Novella may finally make a turn to chaos make sense.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/08/23 19:30:27


 
   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

Since I know the main series is going to be fairly limited, I'm probably going to read them all! But I will report back what I think about them.

I'll give Titandeath a look, currently reading Praetorian of Dorn which seems to give me some context for the status of the solar system pre solar war.

I will also skim the Perpetual stuff, because I find it terrible.

   
Made in gb
Been Around the Block





Yea they are all (so far) mid to good level 40k. As others have said Saturnine is amazing, my fav so far and Solar War was the weakest.

They do a good job of showing the many levels of the battle, so you'll spend time with relatively unimportant mortals. Some have complained this is wasting page space but I think its essential to anchor the whole thing and showcase the scope.

The Perpetual subplot is by far the weakest link in the whole series, but they've committed to it so it needs to be finished, I guess.

Outside of the damn Perpetuals, you won't miss much by not having read all the HH books, assuming you have a basic grasp of HH era lore. For example I didn't read Titandeath, but that didn't stop me from enjoying and understanding Mortis. Maybe I miss an prior character or two being called out, but that's small potatoes.
   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

I went and read some more of the Heresy to get ready for the Siege. Path of Heaven, Praetorian of Dorn, and Titandeath.
Chris Wraight did a great job in his novels I thought. Good characters, decent plot, wrote the primarch well, and gave me a good sense of who the White Scars were.
John French did a decent job with Praetorian too, not as good as the Solar War in my view but still showing his strengths.
My first Guy Haley book showed his strengths and weaknesses. He's good at setting up evocative and exciting scenes - Titandeath is full of impressive future war scenes on a huge scale, and I enjoy that aspect of the heresy. Battles in chemical seas, across floating orbitals with inconsistent gravity, or at the walls of a hive.
He also pays a fair bit of attention to making it seem "plausible" (as plausible as any novel about titans can be).

That said, I thought the characters were a bit weak overall, and the dialogue was choppy. Too many similar characters, the primarchs didn't really land for me this time. I thought the overall plot was satisfying though, I liked the ending.
I'd put him somewhere close to Graham McNeill for me - good enough that reading the novel for the first time is enjoyable, but not something I'd consider re-reading or that really interested me.
I'm going straight into the second Siege book now, which is another Guy Haley, so maybe this one will be better. I do see a huge cast of Primarchs though and that can be very hard to get right so here's hoping!

It's been pleasant to discover a few more decent authors working for the Black Library though. Thanks for the various recommendations!

   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

Just thought I'd update since I was a bit hard on Mister Haley in my last post, I've been reading the second Siege book and it's a pretty large improvement. Characters and dialogue much more satisfying, and some great sequences of action or tension building. Pretty challenging to write, I'd say, but it's a nice improvement on Titandeath, which he says was written in a hurry. Great if they're giving more time to authors to keep the quality up for the Siege series.

Of course, I never really enjoy long sequences with Primarchs, but they're an improvement from last time. I think the variety of perspectives work fairly well in this book.

   
Made in us
Lone Wolf Sentinel Pilot





Guy Haley and David Annandale are the two BL authors that I feel you can really tell when it's a book that they want to write and when it's a book that they're paid to write. For Haley, Titandeath and the Dark Imperium books were very much, "We need you to write about a specific event and it needs to tie in to main studio stuff." Compared to Dante, Devastation of Baal, Flesh and Steel, or his Ork stories, which you can really tell he loved writing.

As for Annandale, anyone who has read both his Horus Heresy work and his Warhammer Horror work will tell you it's like night and day in terms of quality.
   
Made in gb
Longtime Dakkanaut





Flesh and Steel was fantastic.
Really showed his quality there.

Da Boss, why didn’t you read Siege book 1?
   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

I did, I really enjoyed it. I talk about it in my first post.

I've jumped back to Slaves of Darkness now. I have to say, all the Traitor Primarchs become way less interesting characters once they become Chaos corrupted, because it gives the writers and easy out from figuring out proper motivations for them. Probably the biggest single weakness of the Heresy series to me.

   
Made in gb
Lit By the Flames of Prospero






Tbf the Daemon Primarchs losing material motivation is kind of the point. The ones that aren't Daemons still have a good chunk of material motivation, like Perturabo is still in the game for vengeance/recognition while being blinded by adoration for Horus, the exact same problem he had with the Emperor. Horus's motivations especially aren't meant to make any real sense at this point since he is little more than a vessel for the Gods, who are more concerned with the Great Game and trolling the Emperor than actual military strategy.
   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

Yeah it's not that I don't understand it, I just don't find it very interesting to read. Particularly Horus, the series is named after him but he hasn't been a real character since the second book. It's just disappointing, because his misgivings about the Imperial Truth were really interesting but then it was magic knife make man bad, which is a plot they use a fair few times through the series.

At some point it just makes any novel with lots of traitor primarchs a bit of a chore to read unless they are the more interesting ones who are not non-characters.

   
Made in gb
Longtime Dakkanaut





Ah yeah I saw your first post after, bee a while since I visited the page.

Though yeah you’re right it is named Horus Heresy, it’s named after the events/timeframe (which in turn yes were named after him).
So it’s more about what happened then.

Though I agree with you, having more of him would be cool, as that’s the big character etc.

I’m starting Siege shortly.
Looking forward to the end, but hopefully the journey through these books will be good none the less.
   
Made in gb
Longtime Dakkanaut




 Da Boss wrote:
Yeah it's not that I don't understand it, I just don't find it very interesting to read. Particularly Horus, the series is named after him but he hasn't been a real character since the second book. It's just disappointing, because his misgivings about the Imperial Truth were really interesting but then it was magic knife make man bad, which is a plot they use a fair few times through the series.

At some point it just makes any novel with lots of traitor primarchs a bit of a chore to read unless they are the more interesting ones who are not non-characters.


I agree. I'm re-reading the first three books now and one of the things that struck me was how much of a missed opportunity they are. There's a lot of stuff in the first two about the weight of responsibility on Horus, the changing nature of the Imperium as first remembrancers, then tax collectors, show up and start pushing the military aside. then there's the whole nature of Chaos thing and the Emperor hiding it from the Astartes. There's a lot of really good material that is hinted at but ultimately underused because Horus just eventually says "feth it" and turns.
   
Made in us
Dakka Veteran





Denver, CO

I enjoyed book 1. I didn't enjoy book 2. Book 3 is on my nightstand waiting.

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Made in us
Stealthy Grot Snipa





Atlanta, GA

 Da Boss wrote:
Yeah it's not that I don't understand it, I just don't find it very interesting to read. Particularly Horus, the series is named after him but he hasn't been a real character since the second book. It's just disappointing, because his misgivings about the Imperial Truth were really interesting but then it was magic knife make man bad, which is a plot they use a fair few times through the series.

At some point it just makes any novel with lots of traitor primarchs a bit of a chore to read unless they are the more interesting ones who are not non-characters.


Having Horus' entire betrayal of the Emperor be solely based on an evil knife isn't great, now that I think about it. The points that you mentioned really are/were what made him an incredibly interesting character, and having his own agency taken away by a chaos artifact is an easy shortcut to avoid having to do better writing do the heavy lifting of his character arc. Word Bearers having turned to Chaos long before is fine, that's a given. Word Bearers orchestrating a "Horus gets cut and then turned evil" plot is far less interesting than having Lorgar or Erebus act as the "voice behind the throne", slowly turning Horus from the Emperor and to different purposes altogether. See: Wormtongue and Theoden in Lord of the Rings.
   
Made in de
Terrifying Doombull






Nuremberg

Yeah, Horus Rising really got my hopes up, but then by what, book 3 or 4 we have full blown plague marines just cackling and moustache twirling. I was pretty disappointed.

It does recover later, with some of the other primarchs, but I wish they'd put a bit more effort into Horus' arc.

Just started the third siege book. Finding it okay so far, so thanks for the encouragement to read it from those who had.

   
Made in gb
Lit By the Flames of Prospero






The whole "Horus turned from the Emperor cos he got stabbed" is a massive oversimplification of events though. Horus getting shanked on Davin was about stage 3. The Primarchs were already doubting themselves, the Great Plan, the Emperor, and their future by that stage. By the time of Isstvan 3 the Word Bearers were well down the path, the God Marked Legions had been claimed and Chaotic influence was spreading, the Night Lords had a warrant out on them and the Iron Warriors had just razed Olympia.
For Horus specifically, the war against the Interex was soul-draining. Peace had turned to war in literally seconds and then news of Temba was the straw that broke the Camel's back. How can Horus achieve his father's goal and be worthy of the title of Warmaster when he can't find peace with fellow humans or trust his oldest friends? Then Erebus begins his corruption proper on Davin. Horus doesn't truly become a being of Chaos until he kills Iacton Qruze and gets "resurrected" by Maloghurst. Qruze is the point of no return.
   
 
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