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Horus Heresy: Legion Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 2008

4 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dan Abnett lives and works in Maidstone, Kent, in England. Well known for his comic work, he has written everything from the Mr Men to the X-Men. His work for the Black Library includes the popular strips Titan and Darkblade, the best-selling Gaunt's Ghosts novels, the Eisenhorn and Ravenor trilogies, and the highly acclaimed Horus Heresy novel Horus Rising.

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Product Details

  • Series: Horus Heresy (Book 7)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Games Workshop (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844165361
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844165360
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #570,460 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dan Abnett is a novelsit and award-winnig comic book writer. He has written twenty-five novels for the Black Library, including the acclaimed Gaunt's Ghosts series and the Eisenhorn and Ravenor trilogies, and with Mike Lee, the Darkblade cycle. His Black Library novel Horus Rising and his Torchwood novel Border Princes (for the BBC) were both bestsellers. He lives and works in Maidstone, Kent.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I hope that every morning when Dan Abnett wakes up and goes outside to pick up his bottle of milk from the stoop there is a Games Workshop staffer waiting for him. The staffer holds in one hand a gift basket full of fresh fruit and chocolates and in the other hand a large sack full of money.

I say this because Dan Abnett is simply the best author Games Workshop has available and the moment that he figures out he can earn more cash not leashed to Games Workshop's setting, the Black Library will burn to the ground.

Witness 'Legion', the latest in the Horus Heresy series. Deftly written, this is a story about intrigue and deception, not about dudes shooting other dudes. It builds on one of the least developed Space Marine chapters, the Alpha Legion, and gives them a place in the setting. It also develops the history of the setting even more through details of the Geno, a human army, and the memories of Grammaticus, one of the story's principal characters.

The story is a mind-twist and rightly does not feature a lot of Space Marines. Why should it? Most of the mysteries of the Alpha Legion could be answered in two pages at the start of the book, which wouldn't leave much of a story. Instead, the reader gets to follow a handful of characters (one of the hallmarks of Abnett's style is the use of a cast of POV characters) as they get enveloped deeper and deeper within the Legion's coils. The revelations at the end of the book are both shocking and satisfying and Abnett knows his craft well enough to end the story there.

So if you enjoy the setting of the Warhammer 40k universe, pick this book up. Read it for the characterization and plot and don't fret that you don't see too many world-spanning, gut-eviscerating chaotic action scenes. Because Abnett's 'Legion' is akin to the Alpha Legion itself - cunning, deliberate, and always worth getting to the bottom of.
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This book is the second foray by veteran Black Library author Dan Abnett in the Horus Heresy series, and the seventh book in that series overall. His other efforts include works concerning the Imperial Guard (the Gaunt's Ghost series) and the Inquisition (both the Eisenhorn and Ravenor novels). Set in Games Workshop's rich, gothic Warhammer 40,000 (40K) setting, it benefits from 20 years of accumulated canon and imagination. This novel tells the tale of the 20th Space Marine Legion, the Alpha Legion, its Primarch Alpharius, and its network of operatives and spies.

Unlike most of the other Horus Heresy Novels, this one does not use the Marines as the primary point of view. Instead we see the tale through the eyes of members of the Imperial Army, primarily members of Geno Five-Two Chiliad, genetically engineered warriors left over from the Emperor's unification of Earth, essentially primitive prototypes for the mighty Space Marines. Peto Soneka, a "het" (translation: Captain) for one of their units is the most compelling character, but he's joined by a host of others that have equally believable abilities and motivations. Writing interesting characters has always been one of Abnett's strong points.

The beginning, usually one of Abnett's strongest points, stumbles in this novel due to an excess of odd terms that aren't easily defined by context. Where he usually weaves a compelling and immersive setting early on, it's difficult to maintain suspension of disbelief when you're wracking your brain in an attempt to figure out what some obtuse term actually means.

Fortunately he settles down into his typical excellent pacing after the first two or three chapters, and his action writing is as strong as ever.
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A very interesting book, full of intrigue, as befits a book about the Alpha Legion. While I wish the book had showcased the Alpha Legion more, it does a great job of showing the reader how they go about their business. I often found myself wondering what was the truth and what was subterfuge. Dan Abnett does a great job keeping us in suspense and not revealing too much too quickly, perhaps as a way to keep the mystique of the Alpha Legion intact. We also get an extensive look at the Imperial Army, who are the main protagonists of this book. The ending offers a surprising and tragic revelation on the real reason the Alpha Legion turned to Horus' side. All in all very good.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
As a book, this is a decent read. I sometimes had trouble keeping the characters separate, but that is likely to be because I kept putting this book down and coming back to it. It just did not hold my attention like previous books. (I have the e-book version from BL, so flipping back to check the character list is a little harder than if I had a paper copy.)

As a 40K book, though, the entire book is a, as the title of this review says, deus ex machina. A group of aliens, never seen before or since, comes out of the woodwork to get the Alpha Legion to turn traitor. So much more could have been done. We could see the Alpha Legion at work. How they go about their jobs. Instead, most of the book is about the IG, with Alpha Legion thrown in. (Note: There is nothing wrong with a book about the IG. Just saying that this book is more about the IG, even though it is supposedly about AL.) I feel like Abnett took the easy way to writing this book - creating the Cabal out of whole cloth - rather than tying the fall of the Alpha Legion to previously-existing canon.
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