I managed to finish the novel the other night, so now I can finally give my 2 cents also! As a long time fan of the Dark Angels (they being the reason I started on Warhammer 40k crack some 17 years ago), I found it VERY refreshing to have a different author than Gav Thorpe try his hand at the First Legion.
The plot itself - well...it IS a Space Marine Battles book, which does promise for overdone amounts of bolter porn. That said, Eye of Ezekiel was leagues better than the dismal Purging of Kadillus which was penned by Mr. Thorpe. The initial parts of Eye of Ezekiel were actually rather good - even if I did think that the fight against the Necrons was the more interesting one. It seems that the vast majority of the SMB series is Space Marines vs. Orks (or to some extent Chaos). So it does get rather repetitive. As for the odds they are facing, it is actually the entirety of the Dark Angels 5th Company, with fleet support, many-many Mordian & Vostroyan Guardsmen as well as about a century of Skitarii. Further, they are in fortifications, and just going by conventional estimates, being in a fortification means that the odds must be 9:1 in favour of the attacker. And that is just considering human vs. human. Factor in the worth of a Space Marine (where a squad of 10 can almost conquer a planet singlehandedly), I am actually good with the odds of 11 mil. Orks vs. the Imperium.
However, I would very much have liked a chapter describing how the Orks managed to get the manufactorum. It would have been dead easy to throw in a mob of Blood Axe Kommandos beng sneaky and throwing open the gates, allowing the Orks to flood the place. Instead, it just kinda is stated Deus Ex Machina, that the forge city has fallen. Which is a pity.
Was the novel good? Yeah, I do not regret buying it. Could it have been better? No doubt! It could have been massively better, but that cannot be taken as me stating that it is poor book! Will I buy the next C.Z. Dunn Dark Angels stuff? Without a doubt!
Now I just have to work up the courage to read Mr. Thorpe´s "Azrael" (which I have in its limited edition version) as well as the Legacy of Caliban omnibus. I fear that I will be bitterly disappointed...you all know what they say about hope being the first step...