The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby sam vimes » Mon Dec 05, 2011 7:54 pm

OK done arguing that yes the Tau would have won in the crusade as they can reinforce their ships by building them a lot faster than the imperuim although on the Lexi in my view the Tau are still lacking a huge omg lets think twice ship for their fleet, right back to Loken and chums:

One of my favorite running theme? thread? unsure of the correct term here, is Tarik's and by extension Dan's grasp of humor in what is a otherwise dark bleak universe, some of the lines and scenes involving Tarik and his mournival brothers had me chuckling away for example, when Vipus is it? loses a hand and he asks how you healing he responds "fine sir" (or something along those lines) Tarik says good good "wipe your arse with the other one will you?" had me doing this :lol: although he's got a way to go till he beats sandy for humor IMHO.

The big suprise for me was how much I liked incompetence wears terminator armour whilst I felt at times he was a bit cold to Loken and his other brothers, that man would turn a planet upside down to get a brother out of trouble, and the man was just a bit too loyal to Horus and that reminded me of Harlon Nayl in ways that are all good.

Little Horus well until the later books I couldn't get a real grasp on him but I liked him a lot he came into his own later on, liked how he and Loken seem to be the only ones that can calm Horus down at times, the appearance of Erebus was kinda disappointing to me I was like already guys?! Jesus at least let us see some of the crusade before Lorgar starts stirring the pot but that was a minor complaint over all Erebus was done well both liked and disliked how he usurped the Mournival later on in other books was it or did he do it right from the get go? Man I was hoping Abbadon would've handed him his arse but sadly that never happened, Lucius being dropped by Loken in one made up for it though.

The scene that kurisawa describes lit up for me like the black pool illuminations the start of Horus's fall and how he begins to realise that burden he carries is too much even for him as much he would like to think he can bear it what did me though was the fact he never once thought of stepping down and saying "Dad this is too much even for me Sangunius deserves this more than me give him the job" but just like the Lion he is too proud to admit he needs help oh and I think I'm done now feel free to point out any errors.

Side note how good is Horus's political skills man he knows how to play his boys
"Huron-Fal’s systems were on the verge of shutdown ... ‘This death,’ rasped the voder, ‘this death is ours. We choose it. We deny you your victory.’

"Abandon your fear. Look forward. Move forward and never stop. You'll age if you pull back. You'll die if you hesitate."

"From iron cometh strength. From strength cometh will. From will cometh faith. From faith cometh honour. From honour cometh iron." "And may it ever be so"
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Xisor » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:00 pm

sam vimes wrote:The big suprise for me was how much I liked incompetence wears terminator armour whilst I felt at times he was a bit cold to Loken and his other brothers, that man would turn a planet upside down to get a brother out of trouble, and the man was just a bit too loyal to Horus and that reminded me of Harlon Nayl in ways that are all good.


I'd not really thought of the Abaddon/Nayl comparison, but I think that's going to colour my reading of him hugely. I'm immensely infatuated with Rennie's 9,000 years late portrayal, but the idea of Abaddon being a particularly personable character is one that'd long entertained me. Yet, beginning with Dan (and going through Graham/Ben/Dan again for his 'big appearances'), Abaddon (and his compatriots: Erebus & Typhon) have all suffered from being insufferably sinister, at best. If not insufferably sinister, just plain angry/miserable. The lack of detail given for Sigismund and also for the Alpha Legionnaires is enough to separate them from those stock villains.

Or at least...it had been. Now reading as 'Harlon Nayl'. This might change everything.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Liliedhe » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:09 pm

I liked Ezzie. And, since I was by no means a 40K expert when I read that book, I didn't know who he was. This of course colored my reading, I just liked him, he was a nice guy, somewhat choleric^^, but ultimately nice, with a sense of humour and a certain "head through the wall" attitude I found endearing (like when he has his blazing row with Horus).

I even pitied him in False Gods when he is utterly unable to deal with the impending death of his mother father. And then somebody told me who he is. I was not amused. Still like the guy, though, and he is the only 40K mini I have. 8-) If you don't know what he becomes, he is really very likeable, and he stays that way, throughout the trilogy.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Vivia » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:46 pm

Who is Ezzie? I've seen the name pop up here and there. Is it.. is it, Abbadon? :shock:
OMG. I will listen to HR, in a couple of months at least. I need to prepare myself mentally. Ah!
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Liliedhe » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:55 pm

Ezekyle Abaddon, First Captain of the Luna Wolves/Sons of Horus. Called Ezzie by his friends. ^^
"You were a warleader, a fighter, when did you gain such illuminating insight into the minds of others?"
"I learned such things as you and your brothers applied brand to my flesh and parted skin with rasp and knife," snarled Astelan. "When your witches tried to prise open my mind they opened me for an instant and I stared back."
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Vivia » Mon Dec 05, 2011 11:04 pm

I was trying really hard to find who it was the times I've seen the name and now it came to me. He was one of the first CM I liked when I came into 40k. By Primus, shocking revelation.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Xisor » Mon Dec 05, 2011 11:10 pm

Liliedhe wrote:I liked Ezzie. And, since I was by no means a 40K expert when I read that book, I didn't know who he was. This of course colored my reading, I just liked him, he was a nice guy, somewhat choleric^^, but ultimately nice, with a sense of humour and a certain "head through the wall" attitude I found endearing (like when he has his blazing row with Horus).

I even pitied him in False Gods when he is utterly unable to deal with the impending death of his mother father. And then somebody told me who he is. I was not amused. Still like the guy, though, and he is the only 40K mini I have. 8-) If you don't know what he becomes, he is really very likeable, and he stays that way, throughout the trilogy.


Oddly, I didn't care for his rendition in ADB's Soul Hunter. Not at all, on first reading at least. Rather, Rennie's 'askance' glance at Abaddon is almost clinically definitive. Horrific, grim, broad...almost generic, to an extent. Beautiful too. But that's Execution Hour for you.

If you like 40k stories, you desperately, achingly, urgently need to read The Gothic War.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Vivia » Mon Dec 05, 2011 11:31 pm

The ungraspable Execution Hour? :) I agree about the portrayal of Abbadon, it's the only one and only thing from the story I remember after so many years.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby MalkyDel » Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:11 am

Vivia wrote:The ungraspable Execution Hour? :) I agree about the portrayal of Abbadon, it's the only one and only thing from the story I remember after so many years.


Part of it was in a Codex as well, as I recall; which is probably why I remember it. Still an awesome sequence though
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Erunanion » Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:41 am

Liliedhe wrote:I liked Ezzie. And, since I was by no means a 40K expert when I read that book, I didn't know who he was. This of course colored my reading, I just liked him, he was a nice guy, somewhat choleric^^, but ultimately nice, with a sense of humour and a certain "head through the wall" attitude I found endearing (like when he has his blazing row with Horus).

I even pitied him in False Gods when he is utterly unable to deal with the impending death of his mother father. And then somebody told me who he is. I was not amused. Still like the guy, though, and he is the only 40K mini I have. 8-) If you don't know what he becomes, he is really very likeable, and he stays that way, throughout the trilogy.

I agree, I actually found Abaddon (or Ezzie, to his friends) to be a pretty decent character in HR, and the following novels. There is quite a weight of expectation when tackling such a big character (who is probably a more important figure of fear in the 40K setting than just about any other), and I'm glad that he was fairly well rounded. He warmed to Loken, and could joke with him and the Mournival at times, but the brutal, hard-line streak which dominates his 40K personality comes through well in how he deals with the Jubal incident and his staunch (nay, vociferous) opposition to Horus's desire to deal with the interex. As I recall this develops well into False Gods and Galaxy in Flames.

I am in two minds regarding his portrayal in Soul Hunter and the Gothic War books. On the one hand I really love AD-B's take on him (or should that be Talos's take) as almost a figure of ridicule, but you could easily view that through the lens of Talos's own cynicism and bias. The figure in Gordon Rennie's books is much more the traditional "terror of mankind" that we know and fear, and I think that the one is compatible with the other, and you can trace elements of his personality back to the 30K character we see in the HH series.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby kurisawa » Thu Dec 08, 2011 1:24 am

Final Thoughts

Yay! I finished Horus Rising.

Here are my final thoughts.

Murder: After the disorientation of the sudden introduction of even more POV characters, coupled with that strange out-of-chronological-sequence mash of scenes preceding the Luna Wolves drop, Murder was all good fun. I did wonder what the carnivorous megarachnids ate when there weren't any marines around, as we have a planet populated with what is described as a large amount of them, everywhere, yet no food source. Ho hum I guess the marines just never noticed the rest of the ecosystem needed to support apex predators. But this isn't so important to the plot.

Xenobia: Now this was very interesting. In the closing sequence of the book we see the first cracks in Horus's character. When conflict breaks out against the Interex, whom he had wanted to try to persuade peacefully to join the Imperium, Horus shouts out, 'Father why have you forsaken me?' and other words to the effect of, 'This is too hard!'

This actually happens quite abruptly now that I read it again. One moment Horus is all confidence and genius, happily slaying alien monsters on Murder with his brother, and perfectly satisfied that the Emperor is doing his important work back on Terra. The first occurrence of difficult decisions and it's all, 'Waaaagh! Daddy, I can't do it!' There was no signpost leading to this moment.

However, at least we see that underneath all the superhuman powers, Horus is still human at his core. Fear of failing your father's high expectations is an emotion that angsty teenagers all over the world will understand. At this point, I remember wondering when I read it the first time, 'How will he go from this to wanting to actually kill his father?'

Oh, another very important point: Horus knows what Chaos is (he tells Loken this). The Emperor has already briefed Horus on it, and its dangers. So, who is 'The Deceived' that the opening section of the book refers to?

Next, we see the first introduction of a more shadowy player in the Imperium's power struggles: The Council of Terra. This organisation remains faceless even to the 'present day' of the 41st Millennium, yet wields tremendous power. At the end of HR, it is this council that sends out the army of tax collectors and starts issuing the edicts requiring tribute to be taken from compliant worlds. Horus disagrees with this, and even questions whether his father actually agreed to it. Now there is a question: What if the Council, pretending to be ruling in the Emperor's name, and to be performing His will, is in fact hiding behind the figurehead God-Emperor, who in reality has no say in their decisions at all?

And we can't end our look at HR without mentioning Erebus. Oh, Erebus, what have you done? At this point, assuming the reader has not read through the entire HH series yet, we must ask the important question: Why did Erebus take the anathame?
A: Oooh, shiny! Wanty wanty!
B: He wanted to deliberately create a war with the Interex (he tried to convince Horus of this beforehand). If so, why?
C: He knew it to be linked to Chaos somehow, and was already implementing the first stage of some big plan to bring down Horus. IE he was already a heretic!

Answers on a postcard! :lol:

I have now started re-reading False Gods.


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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Athelassan » Thu Dec 08, 2011 1:43 am

B and C, I think.

Starting a war with the interex was a useful way of creating/exploiting divisions within the Luna Wolves and chipping at the edges of Horus's humanity. The interex are a hopeful, enlightened, tolerant society, and destroying them in an inevitably brutal war is going to make it easier to subvert the LWs later.

That it's a Chaos-infused weapon makes it doubly useful (in fact, it might be half the reason Erebus is there in the first place).

I think it's a given Erebus is already a heretic. Obviously we're not meant to know that at this stage in the trilogy (going by novels alone and not other background) but turning Horus to the cause of the WBs is, I think, the whole point in Erebus's presence with Horus's expedition.

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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Xisor » Thu Dec 08, 2011 2:37 am

kurisawa wrote:And we can't end our look at HR without mentioning Erebus. Oh, Erebus, what have you done? At this point, assuming the reader has not read through the entire HH series yet, we must ask the important question: Why did Erebus take the anathame?
A: Oooh, shiny! Wanty wanty!
B: He wanted to deliberately create a war with the Interex (he tried to convince Horus of this beforehand). If so, why?
C: He knew it to be linked to Chaos somehow, and was already implementing the first stage of some big plan to bring down Horus. IE he was already a heretic!


D. We don't know.

At the stage of Horus Rising, it's abundantly clear Erebus has ultierior motives (what with his twirly moustache and maniacal laugh), that said, for the unprepared-reader, IIRC, nothing is given away. It'll take me some time to catch up on that.

IIRC: the end of HR actually leaves it quite open; painting Erebus as the villain but not at all giving everything away. It could have gone differently, even given everything in HR.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Erunanion » Thu Dec 08, 2011 12:36 pm

kurisawa wrote:Xenobia: Now this was very interesting. In the closing sequence of the book we see the first cracks in Horus's character. When conflict breaks out against the Interex, whom he had wanted to try to persuade peacefully to join the Imperium, Horus shouts out, 'Father why have you forsaken me?' and other words to the effect of, 'This is too hard!'

This actually happens quite abruptly now that I read it again. One moment Horus is all confidence and genius, happily slaying alien monsters on Murder with his brother, and perfectly satisfied that the Emperor is doing his important work back on Terra. The first occurrence of difficult decisions and it's all, 'Waaaagh! Daddy, I can't do it!' There was no signpost leading to this moment.

This is what I have come to call the 'Abnettian Ending' - the climax of a novel is so rapid you are left wondering if it ever happened at all.

Upon my second reading of HR (finished a couple of days ago), this was the biggest disappoint of the book. The heavy lifting done in the first act of the novel to establish the Luna Wolves, the Mournival, and Horus, is not undone by the middle act on Murder (but as I said before I think it could have benefited from dropping the back-and-forth structure, but that is just me), but the final third with the interex fails to live up to the great start due, primarily IMO, brevity.

The interex turn up, Horus seeks to engage with them diplomatically (which I think was in keeping with his character up to this point) despite Abaddon's opposition, and then poof - its all FUBAR'd and Horus is happy to slay the lot of them during the extraction. There just wasn't enough time spent on this entire act to lend credibility to Horus's reaction and change of heart - I remember thinking that the second he gets a laser-arrow to the arm he is suddenly all guts-and-glory, with no hint of this beforehand.

I really liked that Horus was willing to deal with the interex - it showed the brains behind the mighty warrior, which all primarchs have but the Warmaster needed - and the Mournival's opposition to it was equally believable. But then we suddenly have a vision of human utopia - with xenos mixed in - and then it all goes to pot. A disappointing ending, especially as the fate of the interex-Imperial relations is so casually dismissed by Loken at the very end of the book - they had played their part in the story of Horus and we are done with them now, thank you very much.

However - Erebus, you sneak, sneaky *******. That reaction hadn't dulled at all.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby kurisawa » Mon Dec 12, 2011 6:40 am

So, I forget the official timescales. Are we ready to open the False Gods thread?

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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby shadowhawk2008 » Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:10 am

The original thread mentioned somewhere between 2 weeks and a month.
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby kurisawa » Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:18 am

shadowhawk2008 wrote:The original thread mentioned somewhere between 2 weeks and a month.


So, this thread being started on November 30th, we wait until January. Gotchya.
My short stories:
1. Extraction = viewtopic.php?f=17&t=2127
2. Intoxication = viewtopic.php?f=17&t=2188
3. Desecration = viewtopic.php?f=17&t=2294
4. Indoctrination = viewtopic.php?f=17&t=3172

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BLACK SHIELDS: INCOGNITUS = viewtopic.php?f=17&t=1901
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby sam vimes » Mon Dec 12, 2011 3:17 pm

excellent I can read and finish false gods tomorrow make some nerdy notes for the new year thread
"Huron-Fal’s systems were on the verge of shutdown ... ‘This death,’ rasped the voder, ‘this death is ours. We choose it. We deny you your victory.’

"Abandon your fear. Look forward. Move forward and never stop. You'll age if you pull back. You'll die if you hesitate."

"From iron cometh strength. From strength cometh will. From will cometh faith. From faith cometh honour. From honour cometh iron." "And may it ever be so"
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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Athelassan » Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:29 am

I know some of the foreshadowing is a bit obvious, but on second reading I did notice some stuff in the scene where Loken is elevated to the Mournival:
"The one feature that has always witnessed an induction," Abaddon said. The moon. Symbolic of our Legion name. No one has entered the Mournival except by the light of a moon."
Loken nodded.
"This seems a pale, false one," Aximand mutttered, looking up at the sky, "but it will do."

Since the foundation of the Mournival, only twelve men had held that unofficial rank, and three of them were present. Loken would be the thirteenth.

"Will you be true to the Mournival to the end of your life?"
"I will"
"Will you serve the Luna Wolves for as long as they bear that proud name?"
"I will," said Loken.

The omens here look bad- something is going to go wrong. Loken's moon is weak, pale and false, suggesting he's not up to the job. He's the thirteenth member - the unlucky one. And he's pledged to serve the Mournival forever, but the Luna Wolves only until they change their name.

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Re: The Bolthole HH Book Club: 'Horus Rising'

Postby Squiggle » Fri Jan 06, 2012 1:40 pm

right then, i completely lost track of this, guess i better read Horus Rising and False Gods in january then?
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