Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Galaxy in Flames

The Horus Heresy is a central event within the Warhammer 40,000 (or 40K) universe. It's taken a long time for Games Workshop to start a novel series about it, but so far the payoff has been pretty good.

As many of you may have surmised by now, I view genre fiction as a sort of guilty pleasure. Never high literature, nonetheless it is entertaining and sometimes that's just what you need. GW like a number of gaming companies has been very effective at plundering its background for fiction, and I think it was a matter of time before they came upon the centerpiece of the 40K background.

Having read Horus Rising and False Gods_ previously, the next book in the series _Galaxy in Flames_ ties up the previous two books and sets off the heresy. Horus has now fully betrayed the trust of the Emperor and has set Astartes against Astartes (Space Marines for non-fans) and crushed the Great Crusade for his own interest.

While Counter is in my opinion not in the same league as Abnett, I felt this book was quite competently written and effectively advances the storyline. I can honestly say I didn't quite know how the book would end from the first page (even though I know the story in an over-arching way). Furthermore the status of some of the characters is in limbo, motivating me to read the next in the series.

While overall the series is good, It is not without criticism. I felt Horus' fall a little to quick and convenient, something that should have been stretched out for another novel. I also was disappointed that so far most of the other Primarchs haven't had a lot of airtime. That being said, I look forward to the next book in the series...