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It is the 31st millennium, and humanity is at the peak of its powers. As the Great Crusade, led by Warmaster Horus, continues to conquer the galaxy, Fulgrim, Primarch of the Emperor’s Children, leads his warriors into battle against a vile alien foe. From the blood of this campaign are sown the seeds that will lead this proud Legion to treachery, taking them down the darkest of paths of corruption. Leading up to the carnage of the Dropsite Massacre on Isstvan V, this is the tale of Fulgrim's tragic fall from grace.

512 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published July 1, 2007

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About the author

Graham McNeill

311 books748 followers
Hailing from Scotland, Graham McNeill narrowly escaped a career in surveying to work for Games Workshop as a games designer. He has a strong following with his novels Nightbringer, Warriors of Ultramar, Dead Sky, Black Sun and Storm of Iron.

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5 stars
3,387 (32%)
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3 stars
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66 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 520 reviews
Profile Image for Sarah Davis.
Author 1 book45 followers
October 13, 2015
Well other teenage girls obsess vampires or werewolves and are busy making their babies, I was busy making babies with pre-heresy Emperor's Children. (I don't think I'd live through it all after heresy...or it wouldn't matter.)

OK that off my mind, amazing book! Possibly a few spoilers.
Things I liked:

1. Fulgrim's personality. Reminds me of my younger sister, only she's probably not gonna fall for a demon sword talking to her.

2. Fulgrim's fall to chaos was well done, I once had a warhammer 40k friend tell me all the primarchs where raised in the way they'd be most likely to go to heresy. Very obvious with Fulgrim.

3. Fulgrim's bromance with Ferrus Manus. In my head they are closer then Horus and Sanguinius. I love they story of how they met and all. I like to imagine several primarch's on Terra staying up late swapping manly stories then eatin waffles!

4.Fighting on Isstavan was really good to see in much better detail. The thoughts behind it and all that was really good.

Despite this there where a few things I didn't like.
1. Stupid and far to many humans. I hate all these normal peeps except like the ones in Horus Rising. Needless to say when they where all killed it made me happy.

2. Why in the emperah's name did ANYONE trust Fabius, much less the Primarch? I mean that guy is a total creep. (Remind me to kill him in future fan fiction.) It makes it feel like the Emperor's Children are stupid, and they aren't. OCD, beautiful, like looking nice, not the VERY best fighters and enjoy the arts...but that doesn't make them stupid.

3. Ferrus Manus dies and you want to cry. You are left wondering why the bad guys never get slaughtered, and are left with the belief the bad guys are sooo much more powerful then the good once it makes you wonder why they lose in the end...

4. Julias, they say (still not sure why...)the Imperial Fists have a stick up there butts. Julias does 100 times worse then they ever could possibly. Someone please remove his?
Profile Image for Gianfranco Mancini.
2,209 reviews793 followers
September 1, 2019

The tale about the fall to Slaanesh of the III Legion is not just a book.

It is a tragedy, an epic and morbid tale about brotherhood, weakness, corruption, depravity and betrayal, with echoes from Oscar Wilde's "The Picture of Dorian Gray" and Michael Moorcock's "Stormbringer" (Graham McNeill's love for Elric had been already shown for good in his Warhammer fantasy books, but here is just over the top).
Still one of the best Horus Heresy novels after years, and my second read was far more good than first one.
Great characters, two brothers gods of war clashing, an unforgettable betrayal and massacre (the Isvan V dropsite part is epic and chilling for real).

A Black Library novel with lots of horror and adult themes, but from a novel introducing the Chaos God Slaanesh (also known as Dark Prince, the Prince of Pleasure, the Lord of Excess) you can't expect less.
And the Maraviglia climax and the birth of the first Noise Marine seem just out of a Clive Barker's nightmare. A real frightening one.

Profile Image for Markus.
476 reviews1,562 followers
November 28, 2020
New primarch, new legion, new perspective. This is the third different viewpoint on the events transpiring in the Isstvan system, leading to the rebellion against the emperor. In a way, it feels like the final piece of the introduction to the Heresy.

Although this is probably more deserving of 3.5, Fulgrim is a solid iteration in a series that remains surprisingly high-calibre.
Profile Image for Robert.
48 reviews6 followers
July 21, 2011
After a near-perfect run up until now, the fifth book In the Horus Heresy begins to show some cracks, chiefly around Graham McNeill's biggest stumbling block; Characterisation. At a whopping 512 pages, this is a story which is in no hurry to be told which would not be a problem if there was a central character to cling onto, instead there's absolutely no-one to match up to the previous books' heroes so we're stuck with Fulgrim. For 512 pages.
The further problem with the Emperor's Children as a legion is that they're thoroughly dislikable - a gaggle of dandys with a penchant for mass-murder and Fulgrim isn't much better. Perhaps it might have been better if The Iron Hands had been given greater prominence, but they're not and so when Ferrus Mannus finally cops it, it's harde to really care.

Thankfully, with those rather galring issues aside, this remains a great read overall thanks to McNeill's considerable skill as an action writer and the intelligent and believable way in which Fulgrim is seduced by the powers of Chaos. The battle scenes are highly evocative and thin characterisation is hardly a mood-killer when writing about characters who are little more than killing machines anyway.

The book remains compelling throughout and - if not the best read of the series thus far - it is somehow the most addictive.
Profile Image for Thomas Edmund.
939 reviews57 followers
August 12, 2017
Fulgrim was an odd installment of the H-Heresy for me. There was some really good scenes and moments, but ultimately the sprawl of events characters and events was just to disconnected and jarring for me to enjoy. There was little tension in Fulgrim's story as we mostly knew where it was going, and his 'corruption' was too on the nose even for the unsubtle 40K universe.

I had mixed feelings about Solomon, at first I thought "here we go another honourable captain to be the good-guy stand-in while the rest of the crew fall to chaos" but then really he just sort of floated around the outside of the story featuring less and less throughout. It wasn't really a pleasing way to avoid a repetitive storyline.
Profile Image for Troy.
45 reviews25 followers
February 22, 2008
I really tried to like this book but for me it had a lot of things going against it. I've never been a big fan of Graham McNeill but I thought he did a good job with "False Gods". In Fulgrim nothing works for me. I think this book is about Fulgrim's fall into Chaos but since Fulgrim and the other Emperor's Children (with the exception of Saul Tarvitz) have been depicted as arrogant pricks in the previous stories they are not sympathetic characters. Without sympathetic characters this "fall from grace" theme didn't resonate with me. I found Ferrus Manus an interesting character but he plays a small role.

McNeill had a tough task with this fifth novel in the series. Besides telling a story where most everyone knows the major plot points he also has to rehash events that were previous covered in the previous books in the series. This concept of seeing events from different sides worked alright in "Einstein" but here it felt like we have seen this already without providing additional insight into the events. The book builds to the events on Isstvan V but then I felt short changed with what should have been an epic battle description. My guess is we'll revisit Isstvan V in some later books.

For fans of the Emperor's Children this book gives them a ton of background and I'm sure they'll enjoy it. Otherwise I would recommend skipping this book. I'm hoping that the series improves with "Descent of Angels" and I'm looking forward to "Legion" from Dan Abnett to restore the series to the greatness of the first books.

Profile Image for David Guymer.
Author 138 books158 followers
September 5, 2016
Similar to The Flight of the Eisenstein, which came before, Fulgrim begins some way prior to where the preceding novels ended, around the time of False Gods I believe, this time exploring the build-up to the Heresy from the perspective of the Emperor's Children.

This book achieved a number of spectacular things:

1) it gave me just a smidgeon of sympathy for Lord Commander Eidolon
2) those rather silly sonic weapons now seem perfectly sensible
3) the Emperor's Children are now number one in my Chapter's I'd Like To See Given A Bloody Nose Somewhere Down The Line list
4) I almost cried for Fulgrim's final moment of realisation and inevitable fall

There are a number of important characters here, some returning, some new, and with the same level of attention given to the Remembrancer order as in previous entries, but the job Graham does in making a full rounded and, in the end, utterly tragic being out of Fulgrim is what will make this novel linger in my mind. I can almost forgive him the fate of my favourite Primarch. Almost. How can I still be angry with him after that...?

Profile Image for Alain DeWitt.
311 reviews9 followers
June 9, 2012
I like the plot, the setting and the action, but the writing style is really starting to get on my nerves. I've mentioned this in previous reviews of volumes in this series, but the constant use of superlatives is really getting on my nerves. It makes the writing melodramatic and over the top. If everyone is perfect and everything is epic, then nothing is. Good thing these are quick reads.
Profile Image for Chris Berko.
471 reviews117 followers
January 8, 2020
Remember that movie Fast Times at Ridgemont High at the end when Spicoli watches Hamilton foil that robbery at the gas station? Well I'm Spicoli right now with these Warhammer 40K novels because they are Awesome! Totally awesome! I'm five deep in the Horus Heresy saga and they are still going strong. In fact I might even say the experience is getting more enjoyable because I'm understanding more of the references then when I was a newbie and with each book read I'm getting to know the characters more and more, although after this last one I realize everyone is potentially expendable. At its core Fulgrim is a tragedy. To say anything more would be a spoiler but I will say the emotional impact was greater at the end of this book than any of the others preceding. The action is present, the characters are still amazing, but this one had a gut-punchedness to it that I did not get from any of the others. To throw out another Fast Times reference, "learn it, know it, live it." But with these books its more like, "read it, know it, live it" because the writing is so crisp and real it actually put you into the happenings: the clandestine meetings, the betrayals, the war zones, the minds of the combatants, the orchestral performances (oh man do you have to read that bit), and everything else in between. These books are a treat, they make me feel like I'm young again and give me a great escape!
Profile Image for Amanda.
707 reviews96 followers
July 6, 2011
Well now... I enjoyed Graham McNeill's last outing in the Horus Heresy (False Gods), although found the pacing a little uneven at times. Fulgrim, for me, shows a writer with an enormous amount of confidence. McNeill has improved immeasurably on False Gods, and presents a novel that is truly epic in scope.

Fulgrim is structured brilliantly. We're shown the Emperor's Children before the fall - an exceptionally proud Legion searching for perfection in everything. There are strong characters showcased as they look for the approval of their Primarch during this period of conquest. Because we've seen the Emperor's Children before the bloody campaign on the Laer worlds, it is all the more heartbreaking to see the cracks appear. Of course, anyone who currently games in the 40K universe will know the future of the Emperor's Children, but McNeill manages to inject a real uncertainty so that new readers coming to the Horus Heresy who don't game will encounter a truly shocking revelation.

I also appreciated the pacing in this novel. McNeill keeps it at slowburn for much of the first half of the novel - there are some exciting set pieces, but truly we're learning about the characters and the nature of the Emperor's Children, set against the backdrop of uneasy rumours about the Warmaster and events already covered in the first three novels of the Horus Heresy. Gradually the action builds to a truly epic crescendo - this is a showpiece of the series so far, dark and powerful.

Still, the action would be nothing if there wasn't a strong heart to the novel; here we have the tale of Cain and Abel, in essence. Two brothers who have a seemingly unshakeable bond forced to face up to jealousy and betrayal. The relationship between Fulgrim and Ferrus Manus is tragic indeed, and leaves the reader really feeling the tearing up of the Astartes between loyalists and those who follow Horus.

I feel I say this way too often about the Horus Heresy novels, but I honestly think they are leading the way where military science fiction is concerned. Strong plotlines, a realism to the warfare presented (yes, even with the colossal virtually immortal killing machines that the Astartes represent!), and great characters make these irresistible. Ignore them because they are tie-in fiction at your peril! Fulgrim marks new heights in the Horus Heresy, and I can't wait to read more.
Profile Image for Nikola Pavlovic.
284 reviews42 followers
September 12, 2022
Knjiga u kojoj se desava dosta toga bitnog. I mada je rastrzana sto se samog kvaliteta radnje i pisanja tice okarakterisao bih je kao dobru. Sa jedne strane imamo neke slobodno mogu reci filere koji su tu da popune prostor, da odgovore na vec uspostavljenu formu koja se moze naci u prethodnum delovima, dok sa druge strane imamo sjajne opise raznih kljucnih dogadjaja i na jako dobar nacin odradjenu tranziciju od Istvaana III ka Istvaanu IV. Pohvalio bih piscevo umece da nam prenese mracnu atmosferu izvitoperenosti, kanibalizovane umetnosti, apokalipticne muzike, orgazmicnog HAOSA!
Profile Image for Matthew.
381 reviews138 followers
October 24, 2017
McNeill delivers. As always. Well worth checking out.
Profile Image for Ctgt.
1,489 reviews84 followers
May 17, 2020
In other words, heresy is a value judgment, the expression of a view from within an established belief system.

Profile Image for Thomas.
244 reviews12 followers
October 13, 2019
Its back to the Warhammer universe and my Horus Heresy reading as I finish book 5. Content wise, there was so much to enjoy from the events that transpired, even if some of them were a little strange. I felt the writing quality of book 5 suffered compared to McNeill’s previous heresy novel and my experience has caused me to somewhat lose confidence in the author.

Book 5 follows the journey of the Legion of The Emperor’s Children in a parallel arc to Horus’s decent into darkness from the first 3 books. Besides the Primarch Fulgrim himself, the novel focuses on his senior captains and commanders and a number of remembrancers with the Legion and The Iron Hands.

I liked The Emperor’s Children as a Legion before reading an in depth account of the heresy from their perspective, but now having read several character arcs, I can say they are a legion I look forward to seeing significantly more of in future novels. I particularly enjoyed the fundamental plot to this novel, if not all its characteristics.

I was pleased to encounter a large number of other Legions and Primarchs throughout the novel, most notably The Iron Hands with Ferrus Manus (a shame what happened to them). I was also looking forward to the fact that there were quite a few remembrancer POVs throughout Fulgrim. However, I found I could not warm to any this time round which was a shame (thankfully they were mostly written out by the end of the novel).

Unfortunately, I was not overly impressed with the way the battle sequences were written, which came as a complete surprise after having enjoyed the writing in False Gods. This was a major factor for me in rating the novel, since at least a third of the novel comprised of battle sequences.

Fulgrim is a novel I wanted to enjoy and was looking forward to, but it ended up being a very varied experience throughout. I think it fair to award it on balance 3 stars, since there were some thoroughly enjoyable parts, but some quite poor writing at the same time. I am very much still enjoying The Horus Heresy and intend to start Descent of Angels relatively soon and I hope to award this a higher rating.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
3 reviews
July 27, 2009
I am really having a hard time believing that so many people didn't like this book. While i can understand the perspective of others that said that this installment of the Horus Heresy series was "formulaic" and were otherwise disappointed in this book, i really think that this book is where the series evolves from a "shoot-'em-up" and intrigue-driven storyline, to unmask the truly sublime forces which are driving the entire Horus Heresy itself. Graham McNeill is at his very best here, being able to draw the reader in completely, and weave a mental tapestry for the reader that is at once deeply disturbing and stunningly beautiful; this is particularly true with the final chapters of the book, which literally made me nauseous to read ... but i just couldn't stop. This book is a must, but the preceding books are certainly recommended for some pertinent stage-setting, to see the glory from which the main characters in Fulgrim have fallen from. This book is haunting, and is hands-down one of McNeill's finest, most sublime works.
Profile Image for Seán.
113 reviews21 followers
June 15, 2018
Another excellent book in the Horus Heresy series. This was possibly my favourite so far, but I could definitely see it as one that others may prefer to skip. It's a classic Faustian story that shows us the horrific effects Chaos can have on Mankind. The side-story focuses on the artists on-board the Emperor's Children's flagship, and uses the idea of the pursuit of the perfect piece of art and the extreme places this may lead to mirror the story of Fulgrim and his troops' own experiments with Chaos. It perhaps went on a bit longer than it needed, but ultimately I really enjoyed the story, the characters, and the self-aware over-the-top tone throughout.
Profile Image for Kevin.
365 reviews4 followers
August 31, 2021
this universe, and this book in particular, are amazingly fucked up
Profile Image for Jean-Luc.
269 reviews30 followers
March 5, 2016
Fulgrim, the titular primarch of the III Legion (Emperor's Children), is supposed to be the aspect of The Emperor's perfection. But he is not The Emperor, so he is imperfect, but that won't stop him and the space marines he leads from trying to be. Stan Bush tells us "it's not the destination, it's what you find along the road", but neither the primarch nor the astartes of the Emperor's Children seem able to grasp this subtle truth. Their worldview contains a critical flaw, and all the overlapping fields of fire and disciplined bolter volleys cannot overcome it.

The book introduces us to the Laer and the Diasporex, two very different xenos breeds. We see the Emperor's Children in action against them and against the Orks. The III Legion performs beautifully on their own and when teamed up with Ferrus Manus' X Legion (Iron Hands). Indeed, Fulgrim and Ferrus are as close as two brothers could be. Only Horus and Sanguinius are said to be closer. This is so, so critical, and had the Black Library selected a less capable author to convey the tale of this brotherhood, it wouldn't have been anywhere near as effective.

From Galaxy in Flames, we already know how this story ends:

After Ultramarines book 3, it was obvious Graham McNeill was well equipped to do this book justice. The savage corruption of the III Legion put the lie to the Horus Heresy: if Horus hadn't fallen, others would still have turned their backs on their father's light.

What's impressed me so far about the Horus Heresy is the quality of the characters. Anyone can be a main character or even a POV character, but it takes incredible skill to write heroes like these so consistently:

'What if the power that filled the Laer came with us when we left?'
The two warriors stared at one another for long seconds before Vespasian said, 'If you are right then what can we do about it?'
'I don't know,' admitted Solomon. 'You should talk to Lord Fulgrim.'
'I will try to,' replied Vespasian. 'What will you do?'
Solomon chuckled and said, 'Stand firm and act with honour in all things.'
'That isn't much of a plan.'
'It's all I have,' said Solomon.

Since reading that exchange, it's occupied a special place in my mind and kept me up at night. It isn't just a plan, it's a good one. Maybe I should follow it. Maybe I can.
Profile Image for Brian.
213 reviews6 followers
March 4, 2010
My score for this is really 4.5 stars. It was a great read.

I wish that it was two books though with the battle for Isstavan V being longer as well as Fulgrim's "transformation."

McNeill made Fulgrim come alive and many times I found that I felt bad for him. His way of life really made him an easy target for Slaanesh.

I found the mix with the rememberancers better than in previous books as the Emperor's Children embraced them instead of shunned them.

One of the best storylines though was that of 3rd Captain Marius Vairosean. His "failure" and then desire to rectify that failure by any means necessary epitomizes the pursuit of perfection of the Emperor's Children.

It was great to see the Eldar in one of the novels. I have missed some of the more famous Warhammer 40K races (Orks, Eldar, etc.) in this series, but the wait was worth it.

I hate Lucius in the first three novels, but I found him not quite as bad in this one and even at times likeable. I liked that for once the "straight-up and down" character (Loken) was not the one who stays true to the Emperor, but is one of the first to turn. Solomon was a great choice for a loyalist. Where is Tarvitz though? If he was killed it was glossed over and if he is alive, I can't wait for him to return.

The reason I did not give it 5 stars was a few errors and a few places I thought it was perdictable.

It was a great book, page turner.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
5 reviews4 followers
February 7, 2008
Unfortunately for the Horus Heresy series this is where it really starts to repeat itself. While The Flight of the Eisenstein was just the same story as in the previous books, it was still fresh because it was the first time we really stepped out of the established characters and followed some one totally new who really comes into his own at the end of the story. The plot and the writing was also good enough for it to still feel new.

Fulgrim, however, feels very much like the same story just told from another perspective. There are a few places that give you a "wow" factor but mostly it is just the same story told from some different characters. The writing and plot just isn't strong enough for it to stand on it's own, and you may even find yourself bored until the end of the story. There is one saying grace however, the ending. The ending is pretty much one long scene of "holy crap" that will suck you in and wonder who will prevail, even if you already know who is gonna come out as the victor.

All in all, Fulgrim is a good book, however it feels repetitive and isn't strong enough to stand on its own.
Profile Image for Rob Hayes.
Author 35 books1,435 followers
September 13, 2019
Not gonna be a long review on this one.

I'll start by saying the narration was mostly excellent with some pretty terrible female voices. Apart from that, very well done.

This is book 5, but should probably be book 4 in the series. It gives a lot of back story to the Emperor's Children and Fulgrim himself and does a great job of setting up the conflict inside of him. It also culminates in a section that follows on directly from book 3 in the series.

The book is chocked full of purple prose, self congratulatory scenes, and extended death scenes. It's often told from an odd past tense that comes out of nowhere and serves no purpose but to confuse matters. And it feels like it was written as a love to Slaanesh... So it's probably the most meta book I've ever read (listened to).

Overall, a vital entry to the series but not as good as those that have come before. 3 stars.
Profile Image for Ryan.
14 reviews10 followers
June 12, 2021
The 'Maraviglia' chapter near the end of this excellent book..OMG!!
Graham McNeill certainly has a talent for writing Horror with a capital 'H'.

'My Emperor's Children,' said Fulgrim, 'what sweet music they make.'
28 reviews
December 17, 2022
This novel is not only extremely dark but also disgusting, not at all what I had expected. While being introduced to yet another cast of characters (both astartes and civilians) made for a bit of a boring start, it's well worth it to persevere until the end.
Profile Image for Efraim.
23 reviews
June 20, 2023
A bit hard to rate as a part of a very long series. I liked the theme of art, inspiration, and excess - and the perspective of the artists under Fulgrim. The overall story and pacing was a bit here and there, it was interesting to see a different perspective of parts of the earlier books but at some points a bit repetitive. Interesting to experience some of the key moments that shape a lot of all the other lore of Warhammer 40k!
Profile Image for Simon Mee.
336 reviews13 followers
February 11, 2022
Five books in, and we get to move on from the Isstvan III Atrocity to… …the Dropsite Massacre of Isstvan V. I can see how this series has managed over a half-century of books and counting. There’s plenty of battles and plenty of reminders that we aren’t necessarily meant to cheer on the “good guys”:

That humans could fight alongside aliens was incomprehensible to Solomon. The very idea of such bizarre creatures working, living and fighting alongside pureblood humans, descended from the people of Old Earth, was repugnant.

God Amongst Men

Fulgrim has plenty of readily understandable emotions, which suits my need to be able to readily understand emotions. I’ve written it many many times already but these are books that tell you what to feel. You will accept that Ferrus and Fulgrim have the deepest ties of brotherhood, because the book said they do, over and over, replacing hundreds of pages of “plot” or “character development”. It is a little cheeky, but they do get through a lot, so we need a shortcut or two, here and there.

Primarily this book seeing the fall to Chaos of the Primarch Fulgrim who’s really, really good looking, and would like to be even more so:

Ostian and the remainder of the audience dropped to their knees in awe of Fulgrim’s majesty, humbled by perfection they would never come close to achieving.

Most of the book a layered build-up to Fulgrim’s final surrender to Slaanesh and daemonhood. Mostly it gets the point across of many small(ish) steps rather than one giant leap to the final fall, and it’s a bit of fun to read Fulgrim tear up some eldar forces. Did he also need a magical talking sword to get there? I have my doubts, but it doesn’t derail the internal and external drivers. There are a few interactions with others that drive home that Fulgrim’s quest for “perfection” is hollowing out his soul:

Too late, Ostian saw that despite asking for honesty, Fulgrim had not wanted honesty, he had wanted validation of his work and honeyed lies to prop up his towering ego.

Fulgrim is a complex enough, if melodramatic piled upon operatic, character that he arguably doesn’t need the excuse of daemon possession at the end. That he does “lose his soul” is more interesting in its effect on the rebellion’s leader Horus, a man who in McNeill’s previous book made clear he wanted to forge his own path. Horus has already lost full control of a major subordinate, forced to threaten Fulgrim’s daemon to keep him quiet and otherwise accept the daemon’s uncertain alliance/confluence of goals. It reads like foreshadowing that things are going to unravel internally.


There’s a weird feeling on disinterest in the early parts of the book. It clomps through the attach on the Chaos ridden Laer, passing up the opportunity for interesting opposition for a lot of focussing on Fulgrim’s perfection:

Such was the primarch’s exquisite planning and prescient thoroughness, that nothing the Laer could do was enough to halt or even delay their inevitable fate.

The book’s protagonist and completely normal xenophobe Solomon Demeter feels unfinished, perhaps with the knowledge he’s going to be cast on the ashheap of Isstvan III. Demeter compares poorly to Tarvitz and Lucius, who are side characters here. He’s a good guy right up the centre but we’re far enough into the series that we have plenty of good guys doing their best. I realise Lucius isn’t exactly the most popular character in the 40K universe, but there’s something I like about his combination of brilliance and betrayal, and he easily exceeds Demeter:

No! What have you done, Lucius?’ he cried. ‘You have doomed us all.’ Lucius laughed and said, ‘You were already doomed, Solomon. I just hastened the end.’

As someone who doesn’t check his grammar properly when writing reviews, I would offer McNeill this advice: Write every character as a male, then roll some dice to work out who’s pronouns you will swap in the final version. It might not be the best way, but it’s better than what I read. It may be about the fall to Slaanesh, with the blood orgies and the like, but the over-sexualisation of the female characters (with little else that makes them actual characters) really drags this book.

The fragrance of her scent was overpowering and the cloying aroma of apples caught in the back of his throat. The front of her dress was scandalously low, and Ostian found himself sweating as he felt his eyes drawn to the barely contained curve of her breasts.

I’m not asking for an Octavia, a Keeler will do.

So this book is a bit patchy and probably the weakest so far, skating by on a reasonably clear theme but a weak supporting cast.
Profile Image for Marko.
8 reviews20 followers
November 15, 2012
The perfect brother falls...

We have struggled for months to accomplish this task on our own when it should have been clear that we could not. In all things we strive to eradicate weakness, but it is not weakness to ask for help, my brothers. It is weakness to deny that help is needed.

Julius laughed and said, ‘Get some sleep, Solomon, you understand? Or did that crash scramble your brains too?’ ‘Sleep?’ said Solomon, slumping back onto the bed. ‘I’ll sleep when I’m dead.’

(...) a truth that is told with bad intent will triumph over all the lies that can be invented, so it behoves us to know all truths and separate the good from the bad.

Eldrad knew there was only one path open to him, and shouted, ‘To battle!’ Fulgrim had to be destroyed before he could escape Tarsus. An answering roar of war lust pulsed along the very bones of the craftworld. Blood runs… anger rises… death wakes… war calls!

‘The phoenix is an angel; the clapping of whose wings is the roar of thunder. And this thunder is the fearful note that heralds the cataclysm, And the roar of the onrushing waves that will destroy paradise.’

One of the best moments in Horus Heresy:

"Unanswered vox hails requested medical aid and supply, but the line of Astartes at the top of the north ridge was grimly silent as the exhausted warriors of the Raven Guard and Salamanders came to within a hundred metres of their allies. A lone flare shot skyward from inside the black fortress where Horus had made his lair, exploding in a hellish red glow that lit the battlefield below like a madman’s vision of the end of the world. And the fire of betrayal roared from the barrels of a thousand guns."
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