Friday, November 18, 2011

Book Review: Deathwing

I don't remember exactly when I first heard of this anthology, but I did hear about it and I decided I wanted it. I checked all the Half Price Books in the Austin area (there are a bunch), but I did not find the book. I then went to Amazon, and I did find it, used, and for about cover price. I was happy with that and ordered it.

Deathwing is an anthology that is a bit odd as it is sort of a second printing. The first printing had seven stories, but this printing has ten. I'm not sure why they did it, but I knew about this before hand and opted for the one with more stories.

I have got to say that I was a little disappointed because I thought, due to the title, that this would be a book about Dark Angels, but I was wrong. There were only two stories about Dark Angels.
The book itself is named after the first story in the book. In Deathwing, a Dark Angels captain returns to his birth world in order to recruit new aspirants to the Dark Angels. Unfortunately some bad guys have set up camp in the decades since the Dark Angels have been around. This book was pretty good because we see from this recruiting world where the Dark Angels get their feather fetish and you see a much more native american feel to the chapter than I was used to. I am used to the medieval knights feel that I've seen in other books.

Devil's Marauders is up next and we get a good guard story for this one. A guard unit is in a jungle in a race against the clock. I liked this story, but I wish we could have seen a bit more character development. The thing that makes the guard stories good in my opinion is the characters in the unit. The dog-faces that are fighting against incredible odds.

Warped Stars is next up and this is a very interesting story. We get to see a very up-close case of heresy and how it starts, and what one inquisitor will do to stop it. This is a very good story. I am sure I have read it in another anthology, but I can't be bothered to search through all the anthologies I own for it.


Monestery of Death

Seed of Doubt

The Alien Beast Within is a story written by Ian Watson that also appears in his Inquisition Wars anthology. It tells the tale of an imperial assassin is sent on the ultimate undercover assignment. This story was a bit too hard for me to believe. I think this is a pretty old story, and the nuts and bolts of how things work in the universe hadn't been set in place it.

Dan Abnett wrote Pestilence, which I am also sure I've read in another anthology, but never the less it is an excellent read. An Imperial Recollector is sent to find the key to cure a pandemic and uncovers a very disturbing tale.

Suffer Not the Unclean to live was an odd story. It felt somewhat disjointed to me. An Imperial priest must do what he can to stop a mutant uprising.

The last story is Unforgiven. The second Dark Angels story. A Sargent finds out that his keeps some nasty secrets.

So there you have it. Another Black Library anthology. It feels a little light with just 10 stories, but some of them are really good with Pestilence being my favorite, and Deathwing a close second. I still feel a bit let down by the title of the book and the fact that there are only two Dark Angel stories in the book, but none-the-less it was fun to read. I give this book three reprinted anthology stories out of five.

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