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Penitent


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#1
MarineRaider

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I just finished this book. So many thoughts but really the main one without revealing any spoilers is there a new person in charge at BL? Because this could really open up many different possibilities.

 

A well-written book and I don't normally like "I" books all that much.

 

 



#2
b1soul

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My big question after reading...

How is Dan gonna resolve this before the Indomitus Crusade/Dark Imperium timeline?

Spoiler


#3
DukeLeto69

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My big question after reading...

How is Dan gonna resolve this before the Indomitus Crusade/Dark Imperium timeline?

Spoiler


Spoiler

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#4
b1soul

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One idea is that the Aeldaeri

Spoiler


#5
Ramell

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I finished it last night too (or this morning?) Wow.
Now I want to know when I can read Pandaemonium.

#6
A Melancholic Sanguinity

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I love Beta Bequin's narrative voice; there's a formality and antique tone that reminds me, of all things, of Jane Austen's writing.

 

It's like Regency 40k, and just on account of the prose itself has catapulted its way to one of my favorite 40k novels. Reading the Bequin series is one hell of a mind trip. It's a masterclass in first-person discombobulation narrative, of playing with - to borrow a repeated theme from these books - the extimate space between character knowledge and reader knowledge of everything from personal identity to wider histories of the setting.


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#7
b1soul

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It feels and sounds a bit more like Victorian 40K to me...but yes, it's a slice of the Imperium with a unique history and culture, not just generic Imperial urban world #119611 if you know what I mean ;)

It very much is 40K meets 19th century England and I'm loving it.
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#8
Carach

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is this thread not an overlap of the magos/pariah and the like thread?

 

I read through it inside about 2 weeks and yea... I think I said to myself about 3 times "hmm.. *strokes beard thoughtfully* the plot thickens" before things just got so nuts one could only say "w t f"

 

escalation after escalation. Lord knows what the man is going to come up with for the last book.


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#9
malika666

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is this thread not an overlap of the magos/pariah and the like thread?

Not specifically. I feel the other thread is more about the 'grand narrative' between the different books, I was kinda hoping that this thread would be the spoiler zone for Penitent specifically. 


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#10
DukeLeto69

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is this thread not an overlap of the magos/pariah and the like thread?

Not specifically. I feel the other thread is more about the 'grand narrative' between the different books, I was kinda hoping that this thread would be the spoiler zone for Penitent specifically.

The last few pages of that thread are jam packed with Penitent spoilers.

#11
b1soul

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I'd be down for treating this thread as an area to focus on any reasoned speculation about where Penitent could lead
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#12
Knockagh

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Excellent book. More brilliance from Dan as I expected. Roll on the final chapter. Wish I hadn’t known the big secret but that’s my fault for being nosey.

Slight aside I dislike his direct references to Jesus and the Jewish Talmud. It’s incredibly lazy and it just makes me feel uncomfortable. But I’m not getting wrapped up in it, my faith is bigger than getting insulted over stuff in a space novel. I suppose I would just rather he stuck to fiction (although that’s clearly what Dan thinks of Jesus haha). Anyway when something is actually real world important to you it can feel weird when it’s used tritely. I know 40k is steeped in this stuff and I don’t take offence at it but this was pretty in your face. Slightly spoiled what was an excellent novel.

#13
DarkChaplain

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That's kinda my beef with Dan's now very frequent references to real world history and mythology. He had the whole Oll-with-cross thing, the argonauts, now even qwerty keyboards and old terran languages that were most assuredly deader than latin is today by the time M31 rolled around.


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#14
A Melancholic Sanguinity

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The mythology and linguistic stuff is more front-and-center in the Bequin series though, and there is justification for it when one of the (noted as a thing by characters in-universe) things about Sancour and Queen Mab is that it is distinctly odd in how old, otherwise forgotten and lost elements of long-past old earth culture tend to persist, resurge, and ingrain themselves.

 

It's part of the point, that there's something odd about the whole damn place, how it's steeped in extimate locations and genius locii and curious doorways that connect to places they shouldn't.


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#15
Scribe

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. I know 40k is steeped in this stuff and I don’t take offence at it but this was pretty in your face.


It is, but it isn't. Nobody but Abnett goes to such obvious degrees, and it's a wonder he continues to get a pass for it.
Q:  Is there room for hope in the grim dark future of Warhammer 40,000?
A:  I do hope not because then it won't be the 40k universe anymore.
- Dan Abnett -

 

(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻


#16
Knockagh

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One of the things I love about BL fiction is that it deals with faith in society, warts and all. The crooked church with its greedy corrupt clerics, the whole question of the existence of higher powers and their purposes and interactions with the average joe.
I dont get and am not offended by these things, Dan’s absolutely one of my favourite writers and he can stick whatever he likes in his books. It would just be nice if he could not use a name for my God that means so much to many practicing Jews and Christians it made me feel very uncomfortable and then labels it a fable. (That makes it sound like I’m offended!)
Anyhow if I ignore that the book was brilliant so much in it. Glad I left it until after lambing
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#17
A Melancholic Sanguinity

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I sympathize with you Knockagh, but keep in mind that these stories are told from the point of view of individuals in-setting. To them, yes everything about our current-day faiths and religions would be long-past mythology. That is, the bits and pieces of garbled remnants they have access to.

 

I'd compare it (hamfistedly) to say, an Aztec who worshipped Quetzalcoatl wholeheartedly in 1100 viewed him versus how a Religious Studies academic at UC Berkeley in 2021 views the ideation of a Mesoamerican serpent deity. They're just coming at it from very different angles of personal meaning, cultural contexts, historical distance, social norms, lived experience, etc.


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#18
DarkChaplain

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The mythology and linguistic stuff is more front-and-center in the Bequin series though, and there is justification for it when one of the (noted as a thing by characters in-universe) things about Sancour and Queen Mab is that it is distinctly odd in how old, otherwise forgotten and lost elements of long-past old earth culture tend to persist, resurge, and ingrain themselves.

 

It's part of the point, that there's something odd about the whole damn place, how it's steeped in extimate locations and genius locii and curious doorways that connect to places they shouldn't.

 

That's why I didn't mind it in Pariah/Penitent, but get so tired of "Seen-It-All"-Perpetuals in the Heresy. Used to be that the Emperor was special for having been there during key moments of human civilization, and now we got folks predating him and still praying to religious figures that were born millennia after they were.

 

In the Heresy, it gets particularly obnoxious because there's so much room in the timeline to sprinkle the Perpetuals throughout, or refer back to for pseudo-historic references - like, 28 millennia's worth! - but that's not really happening. It's like the only stuff relevant for them to reminisce about is their backyard in known history, when they've lived insanely long lives full of experiences of all kinds.

 

Sancour, as you point out, is rooted in Terran culture - with many implications of this being highly deliberate. It's shrouded in mystery and out in the open both, and the reasons for it will undoubtedly play a massive role in untangling the secrets in Pandaemonium. As a result, there's no "hey, remember the Argonauts? Man, the sea was rough! Still can't believe how Jason did dear Medea dirty"-references being thrown at you, but pieces that are actually relevant to the reader for figuring out what's going on under the hood. There's a reason to dig into these things specifically, whereas Ollanius and company could recall literally anything for character development, without making the future appear so terribly smallville.

 

 

Spoiler

Edited by DarkChaplain, 15 April 2021 - 09:42 PM.

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#19
mc warhammer

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Excellent book. More brilliance from Dan as I expected. Roll on the final chapter. Wish I hadn’t known the big secret but that’s my fault for being nosey.

Slight aside I dislike his direct references to Jesus and the Jewish Talmud. It’s incredibly lazy and it just makes me feel uncomfortable. But I’m not getting wrapped up in it, my faith is bigger than getting insulted over stuff in a space novel. I suppose I would just rather he stuck to fiction (although that’s clearly what Dan thinks of Jesus haha). Anyway when something is actually real world important to you it can feel weird when it’s used tritely. I know 40k is steeped in this stuff and I don’t take offence at it but this was pretty in your face. Slightly spoiled what was an excellent novel.


i'd allow for the possibility that just because dan is writing certain themes that doesn't mean he actually supports or believes them himself.

re some form of pro christianity, he gave oll a cross and as far as i can tell...that wasn't a dig.
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It always amused me that the GW Mail Order ‘Trolls’ as we (starting with me) had always styled ourselves insisted as being rebranded ‘Space Marines’. Why anyone would want to be associated with semi-lobotomized, hypnotically indoctrinated slave-soldiers in thrall to an uncaring (and possibly non-existent) god I couldn’t imagine. - Rick Priestley

 2019

#20
b1soul

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I don't really get the opposition to real-world references in M31 or M41. We have human artifacts from 30,000 to 40,000 BP, so not out of the question something from late M2 managed to survive and crop up in an M31 or even M41 collection. I'm also fine with the mention of "ancient" religions in 40K stories so long as it's just a character giving us their far-future perspective of an ancient religion as an organic part of the story...and not the author treating the story as an opportunity to denounce or advocate a certain religion to readers who just want to read a 40K story. IIRC, the most on-the-nose "religious" 40K story was The Last Church...but while rather cliche, I wasn't offended by McNeill's little tale nor did I suspect him of driving a personal agenda. A story like that to flesh out the Emperor's views on rationalist materialism vs. religious faith made logical sense. The quality of the story's execution is another matter.

I understand that Perpetuals are really a matter of taste, so I get why they're so polorising.
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#21
Scribe

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It's not a question of artifacts. It's a question of forcing real world religion into a setting that it has absolutely no reason to exist in.

I do not wish to offend anyone who holds these beliefs, and religion is not a focus of this board, and frankly there is a reason.

Only one author continues to force it into the setting.
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Q:  Is there room for hope in the grim dark future of Warhammer 40,000?
A:  I do hope not because then it won't be the 40k universe anymore.
- Dan Abnett -

 

(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻


#22
Petitioner's City

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Scribe, I can think off the top of my head that Graham, Aaron and Dan have each used overt religious imagery and events that are grounded in our world (the last church, the cathar heresy, etc), but heck, the use of angels (angels that come straight out of western Christian visual traditions rather than other visual traditions), Catholic imagery (the ecclesiarchy, the redemptionists, etc), medieval crusader imagery (eg dark angels, black templars), priesthoods, Faustian bargains, devils and daemons, the use of common religious ideas of sin and major "sins", patriarchal (white) images of monotheistic divinity, and so on, means that real-world religion is threaded through the setting deeply and decidedly so. It is not just names, but also adaptations of realworld events - what is Nikea but obviously Nicea? The reformation, the great schism, the arian debate, the emergence of realworld religions - all are there in the setting. There are 1000s of these allusions to (predominantly) western religion in the literature and lore of 40k - in part because it's makers are themselves part of western (especially british-european) culture.

Dan is very intrigued by names, by history, by religion and often by the legacy of literature - and indeed as with many writers, Shakespeare. I think of Prospero Burns - a title people feel was wrong for the book itself but that was because people wanted a simple battle narrative (perhaps more akin to Necropolis?) - but Prospero isn't just a planet in the 40k setting, he is of course the wizard in The Tempest, after which the planet was named by the writers of 40k. The themes of the Tempest run through that book - the loss of knowledge and magic, the danger of nature, of exile and expulsion and status and parentage, etc.

And that's not just Dan; when the 40k writers - science fiction writers - are on top-form they are doing what often sci-fi and fantasy writers do; i.e. use it as a tool to explore a thematic question or set of questions. And so exploring the power of names, of religion, of devotion - ideas steeped through the IP itself - seems pretty normal.
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Cinema itself is a trick of time — still pictures passed through a focused beam of light at 24 frames per second. We are reminded of that in La Jetée...

#23
b1soul

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To me, Ollanius Persson with a cross on his neck is a neat little link to present day. Shows he picked us a religion many millennia ago, one he found comforting...and stuck with it. I'm not too miffed by it.
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#24
mc warhammer

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if anyone in 30k is gonna remember catholicism... it's probably a dude who lived through its heights

It always amused me that the GW Mail Order ‘Trolls’ as we (starting with me) had always styled ourselves insisted as being rebranded ‘Space Marines’. Why anyone would want to be associated with semi-lobotomized, hypnotically indoctrinated slave-soldiers in thrall to an uncaring (and possibly non-existent) god I couldn’t imagine. - Rick Priestley

 2019

#25
Scribe

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Scribe, I can think off the top of my head that Graham, Aaron and Dan have each used overt religious imagery and events that are grounded in our world (the last church, the cathar heresy, etc), but heck, the use of angels (angels that come straight out of western Christian visual traditions rather than other visual traditions), Catholic imagery (the ecclesiarchy, the redemptionists, etc), medieval crusader imagery (eg dark angels, black templars), priesthoods, Faustian bargains, devils and daemons, the use of common religious ideas of sin and major "sins", patriarchal (white) images of monotheistic divinity, and so on, means that real-world religion is threaded through the setting deeply and decidedly so. It is not just names, but also adaptations of realworld events - what is Nikea but obviously Nicea? The reformation, the great schism, the arian debate, the emergence of realworld religions - all are there in the setting. There are 1000s of these allusions to (predominantly) western religion in the literature and lore of 40k - in part because it's makers are themselves part of western (especially british-european) culture.

Dan is very intrigued by names, by history, by religion and often by the legacy of literature - and indeed as with many writers, Shakespeare. I think of Prospero Burns - a title people feel was wrong for the book itself but that was because people wanted a simple battle narrative (perhaps more akin to Necropolis?) - but Prospero isn't just a planet in the 40k setting, he is of course the wizard in The Tempest, after which the planet was named by the writers of 40k. The themes of the Tempest run through that book - the loss of knowledge and magic, the danger of nature, of exile and expulsion and status and parentage, etc.

And that's not just Dan; when the 40k writers - science fiction writers - are on top-form they are doing what often sci-fi and fantasy writers do; i.e. use it as a tool to explore a thematic question or set of questions. And so exploring the power of names, of religion, of devotion - ideas steeped through the IP itself - seems pretty normal.


As I noted, 40K is both full of it, but also not. Everything you noted here is true obviously, but again there is a difference between alluding to Paradise Lost, or hosts of Angels, and some Perpetual dropping a 'hey remember the Mormon's? I met Joe once, we should go look them up on Armageddon.'
Q:  Is there room for hope in the grim dark future of Warhammer 40,000?
A:  I do hope not because then it won't be the 40k universe anymore.
- Dan Abnett -

 

(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻





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