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What is your least favorite HH novel?


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#1
TorvaldTheMild

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Mine was Furious Abyss, but move over FA as Tallarn is now my worst, there was nothing interesting that happened in it, even the fight with the titans was boring.  It was so bad, practically no character development, the best bit was .  It was all either action or driving around in tanks, I can't wait for it to be over and a lot of the time I wasn't even paying attention to what I was reading it was so bad, I was daydreaming my own thoughts while reading this.  Granted it was a collection of stories but Jesus.


Edited by TorvaldTheMild, 25 November 2019 - 12:36 AM.


#2
Slave to Darkness

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Abyss and Mechanicum. Mechanicum being the only book I have never finished in my life I hated it that much. 


Edited by Slave to Darkness, 24 November 2019 - 10:43 PM.

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#3
Grey Angel

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Abyss and Mechanicum. Mechanicum being the only book I have never finished in my life I hated it that much.


Mechanicum is one of my favourites, worst is definitely Fear to Tread.
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#4
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I used to buy and read every horus heresy novel.

 

Until the Damnation of Pythos.


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#5
DarkChaplain

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Fear to Tread and The Unremembered Empire, as far as the novels go. One made a laughing stock of daemons while providing flat characters across the board, the other devolved into a silly marvel movie brawl while forgetting its entire premise until the final pages.



#6
Qkhitai

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Controversial choice, but Know No Fear. I have tried, time and time again over the years, to get through it, but I just can't. It puts me to sleep every single time; it's painfully dull and the present tense gimmick gives me a headache. There are other books in the series I've struggled with, Vengeful Spirit, Nemesis and Vulkan Lives spring to mind, but I've never had much invested in any of them. I genuinely really want to enjoy Know No Fear, so it feels like the much bigger let down. Although then again I also enjoyed some of the more disparaged HH novels (Outcast Dead is and will always be awesome), so perhaps I just have poor taste.


Edited by Qkhitai, 24 November 2019 - 10:53 PM.

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#7
Vykes

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'Worst' for me is Furious Abyss, too.  I've gone through the majority of books and while there's a few that actually sink pretty hard in parts, the most disappointing (not worst, just most outright disappointing) was Fear to Tread

 

That said, I probably talk about Abyss the most of any HH novel, and it has some genuinely bizarrely entertaining moments in it. But overall, I just... I have... thoughts but no words. It feels like an RA Salvatore D&D novel in space, Space Tavern and all. 

 

For the record, I read Fear to Tread all the way through in maybe 3 days and felt worse for it, but Descent of Angels took me 3 years to finish, cover to cover.  That was 'the slog' for me. 


Edited by Vykes, 24 November 2019 - 11:18 PM.

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#8
TorvaldTheMild

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I loved the ending to furious abyss but everything leading up to that is terrible.  


Controversial choice, but Know No Fear. I have tried, time and time again over the years, to get through it, but I just can't. It puts me to sleep every single time; it's painfully dull and the present tense gimmick gives me a headache. There are other books in the series I've struggled with, Vengeful Spirit, Nemesis and Vulkan Lives spring to mind, but I've never had much invested in any of them. I genuinely really want to enjoy Know No Fear, so it feels like the much bigger let down. Although then again I also enjoyed some of the more disparaged HH novels (Outcast Dead is and will always be awesome), so perhaps I just have poor taste.

I loved Vengeful Spirit, same with Nemesis.  I didn't hate Know no fear, but I don't remember much of it so, that kinda shows it wasn't that great.


I used to buy and read every horus heresy novel.

 

Until the Damnation of Pythos.

I don't normally read books I don't like, but I love the lore to 30k/40k so I soldier on with books I hate, I never do that with any other novel though.  Some books I've literally read a page and though life's to short and flung it in the bin.


Edited by TorvaldTheMild, 24 November 2019 - 11:45 PM.


#9
byrd9999

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Battle for the Abyss, hands down.

 

It was so bad that I nearly gave up on all Black Library.

 

I was new to BL fiction, about 3 years ago, and I was very skeptical of its validity, thinking it would consist solely of poorly-written caricatures, performing nonsensical acts, told in rage-inducingly bad prose. I started with Horus Rising, and was stunned that tie-in fiction could evoke such grand concepts, like the Greek Tragedy-thing of the Imperium-that-could-have-been, and that it could make toy soldiers so damn readable.

 

Galaxy in Flames tested my resolve a little, being a significant step-down from the first 2 in the HH series. But Abyss was so excruciatingly bad that it negativelty affected the previous books that I had read and enjoyed. It was like the scales were falling from my eyes and I could now truly see how crappy all IP tie-in fiction was. It was just cheap pulp nonsense for people who hadn't read anything deeper than a tabloid newspaper. Why was I wasting my life reading such crap?

 

I took a break from BL to read some decent stuff, like The Spy Who Came in From the Cold. Tentatively I started again with BL, and haven't looked back.

 

I have read too much excellent BL fiction now to let a bad book throw me off, but other clunkers include Outcast Dead from about p85 onwards, Angel Exterminatus and Vengeful Spirit. Feat to Tread was disappointing too.



#10
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Damnation Of Pythos for me. It took me months of picking it up, reading it a bit, getting distracted by other novels, finishing them, pushing on a bit more with it...

#11
mc warhammer

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Close race between ‘Flight of the Eisenstein’ and the McNeill ‘Fulgrim’ for me. ‘Flight...’ just edges across the finishing line for a win. Yay ‘Flight...’!
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'WHEN WE CONFRONTED THE CORRUPTED, HOMICIDAL HORUS WHO ONCE USED TO SHINE LIKE THE BRIGHTEST STAR, WHO USED TO BE OUR BELOVED FAVOURITE – WHEN THE FATE OF THE GALAXY HUNG BY A THREAD – WERE WE NOT COMPELLED TO EXPEL ALL COMPASSION? ALL LOVE? ALL JOY? THOSE WENT AWAY. HOW ELSE COULD WE HAVE ARMOURED OURSELVES? EXISTENCE IS TORMENT, A TORMENT THAT MUST NOURISH US. EVIDENTLY WE MUST STRIVE TO BE THE FIERCE REDEEMER OF MAN, YET WHAT WILL REDEEM US?’

 

#12
TorvaldTheMild

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Close race between ‘Flight of the Eisenstein’ and the McNeill ‘Fulgrim’ for me. ‘Flight...’ just edges across the finishing line for a win. Yay ‘Flight...’!

Wow those are too iconic books, I loved them.  Different strokes for different folks I guess.  


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#13
m0nolith

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Battle for the Abyss

 

For the most part the HH series has been excellent, but there were some stinkers in it, but nothing, NOTHING gets close to to how abysmal that book was.


Edited by m0nolith, 25 November 2019 - 12:40 AM.

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#14
Slave to Darkness

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Actually the more I think about it a lot of the Heresy novels were pretty bad. Thats why I stopped buying them, just listen to the audio books now when I paint. So glad I borrow them off a friend instead of buying the books, a lot of them would have been a complete waste of cash. 


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Unbearable, isn't it? The suffering of strangers, the agony of friends. There is a secret song at the centre of the world, and its sound is like razors through flesh.

gallery_29004_9303_22505.png

Blog - Gates of Helvete

''Help! Help! I'm being repressed!!!'' - Dennis the Peasant, England. 932 A.D.


 


#15
Qkhitai

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I loved Vengeful Spirit, same with Nemesis. 

 

They're not really bad books, I just find the post-Istvaan SoH arc rather impenetrable. More so with Vengeful Spirit than Nemesis I guess, but I found it very much an exercise of asking: "wait, you are you again? where are we now? can anyone tell me what's going on?". Also removing Loken, who was literally the SoH POV guy for the first three books, left some big shoes to fill, and the shift is a little jarring.


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#16
Slave to Darkness

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Close race between ‘Flight of the Eisenstein’ and the McNeill ‘Fulgrim’ for me. ‘Flight...’ just edges across the finishing line for a win. Yay ‘Flight...’!

Wow those are too iconic books, I loved them.  Different strokes for different folks I guess.  

 

Flight was a great book imho, although I did struggle with some of Fulgrim, some of the chapters was like chewing on an old combat boot. 


Unbearable, isn't it? The suffering of strangers, the agony of friends. There is a secret song at the centre of the world, and its sound is like razors through flesh.

gallery_29004_9303_22505.png

Blog - Gates of Helvete

''Help! Help! I'm being repressed!!!'' - Dennis the Peasant, England. 932 A.D.


 


#17
mc warhammer

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Close race between ‘Flight of the Eisenstein’ and the McNeill ‘Fulgrim’ for me. ‘Flight...’ just edges across the finishing line for a win. Yay ‘Flight...’!

Wow those are too iconic books, I loved them. Different strokes for different folks I guess.

i think i’ve gone into detail elsewhere on why; but after being pleasantly surprised by ‘Horus Rising’...i just felt the bar dropped lower and lower with each book until “The First Heretic” arrived and renewed my enthusiasm

(i also skipped “abyss” and “fear to...” based on reviews and how much i hated the one swallow novel i read, so my selection sample is going to be smaller than anyone who read the entire HH)

but yeah, mileage varies
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'WHEN WE CONFRONTED THE CORRUPTED, HOMICIDAL HORUS WHO ONCE USED TO SHINE LIKE THE BRIGHTEST STAR, WHO USED TO BE OUR BELOVED FAVOURITE – WHEN THE FATE OF THE GALAXY HUNG BY A THREAD – WERE WE NOT COMPELLED TO EXPEL ALL COMPASSION? ALL LOVE? ALL JOY? THOSE WENT AWAY. HOW ELSE COULD WE HAVE ARMOURED OURSELVES? EXISTENCE IS TORMENT, A TORMENT THAT MUST NOURISH US. EVIDENTLY WE MUST STRIVE TO BE THE FIERCE REDEEMER OF MAN, YET WHAT WILL REDEEM US?’

 

#18
TorvaldTheMild

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Yeah making Loken into a tertiary character was one of the biggest mistakes they made.  He isn't even a secondary character now.  He has one of the best stories, being the hero of Istavaan 3 and one of the first to stay loyal and fight his legion, then his breakdown.  But they never even told his story afterwards, he's a side story in the Garro series and he played an important role in Vengeful Spirit but that's it.


Edited by TorvaldTheMild, 25 November 2019 - 01:17 AM.


#19
Slave to Darkness

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The First Heretic... Now THATS a book worth reading... 


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Unbearable, isn't it? The suffering of strangers, the agony of friends. There is a secret song at the centre of the world, and its sound is like razors through flesh.

gallery_29004_9303_22505.png

Blog - Gates of Helvete

''Help! Help! I'm being repressed!!!'' - Dennis the Peasant, England. 932 A.D.


 


#20
Qkhitai

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Yeah making Loken into a tertiary character was one of the biggest mistakes they made.  He isn't even a secondary character now.  He has one of the best stories, being the hero of Istavaan 3 and one of the first to stay loyal and fight his legion, then his breakdown.  But they never even told his story afterwards, he's a side story in the Garro series and he played an important role in Vengeful Spirit but that's it.

 

My point is rather, who is telling the SoH story after Loken goes off to do his Knight Errant thing? We spend three books seeing the legion through his eyes, and he isn't particularly positive about anyone besides the other loyalists. So when we're left with the traitors after Istvaan, who are we meant to be empathising with? Aximand is kind of thrust into that role and he does okay-ish, but I'm not sure how we're supposed to root for Abaddon, Kibre, Maloghurst or anyone else we'd just spent three novels learning not to get along with. So the post-Istvaan arc is kind of difficult to get into, because it's continuing a story where the villains have suddenly become the heroes.


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#21
Vykes

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...

 

My point is rather, who is telling the SoH story after Loken goes off to do his Knight Errant thing? We spend three books seeing the legion through his eyes, and he isn't particularly positive about anyone besides the other loyalists. So when we're left with the traitors after Istvaan, who are we meant to be empathising with? Aximand is kind of thrust into that role and he does okay-ish, but I'm not sure how we're supposed to root for Abaddon, Kibre, Maloghurst or anyone else we'd just spent three novels learning not to get along with. So the post-Istvaan arc is kind of difficult to get into, because it's continuing a story where the villains have suddenly become the heroes.

 

 

I think that's an entirely fair point, and I say this as a person who actually doesn't like Loken at all, doesn't sympathize with the loyalists in the least, and downright hates the Knight Errant concept.  

 

But, what he does have is a rather blank 'heroes perspective' that allows a good amount of the action to really come through, and with his removal and the loss of Tarik, the narrative torch (as it was) really just kinda disappears.  It fumbles for a bit but there's no central figure, no one to really write around, and I do think that as a novel series it never quite picked up in the same way.  If it was done with anti-heroes like Aximand or Noctua, or Ekkadon that could have been an interesting and bold choice as part of a dual narrative.  But for a lot of the story, the characters have a line, then disappear for half the series and re-emerge as a sort of impenetrable fugue.  One can vaguely remember their names but that's about it.  

 

To me, it doesn't matter if the perceived villains are heroes, is that there's not much of a continuation with the characters that they establish.  

 

Maybe that's one of the reasons I liked books like Slaves to Darkness and the like, it wasn't exactly a return to form so much as a return to at least some named characters that I vaguely remember. 


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#22
Ranulf

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Tally another vote for Battle for the Abyss here - it was a slow, turgid slog to the finish line with little enjoyment for me. 

 

Glad I haven't seen The Master of Mankind on the list anywhere, those would be considered fighting words. ;)

 

-Ran


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#23
Roomsky

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Ima overlook you're heretical distaste for Tallarn.

 

I think it speaks to the quality of Battle for the Abyss that so few people in this thread have even referred to it by its actual title.

 

Anyway, Battle for the Abyss, Vulkan Lives, and Deathfire are all unreadable to the point where I can't really fairly review them to decide which is the worst of the three. Kyme should never have been allowed anything longer than a short story. 

 

If novellas count, it's Promethan Sun, no contest.


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#24
rookie40K

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Promethean Sun. The audiobook with Saul Reicklin. Horrible.

Great cover art though!

Edited by rookie40K, 25 November 2019 - 03:40 AM.

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#25
TorvaldTheMild

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Ima overlook you're heretical distaste for Tallarn.

 

I think it speaks to the quality of Battle for the Abyss that so few people in this thread have even referred to it by its actual title.

 

Anyway, Battle for the Abyss, Vulkan Lives, and Deathfire are all unreadable to the point where I can't really fairly review them to decide which is the worst of the three. Kyme should never have been allowed anything longer than a short story. 

 

If novellas count, it's Promethan Sun, no contest.

I read that book a decade ago, so forgive me for getting the name wrong.






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