Clerics, Aristocrats and Imaginary Friends of Mars

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Clerics, Aristocrats and Imaginary Friends of Mars

Postby Xisor » Sun Jan 18, 2015 1:27 pm

Well, the main praise comes from the boldness and extent of the topics covered in the three novels. The Galaxy, the Quest for Knowledge, Explorators... All that jag.

And there's some wonderful turns in it, varyingly creative and clever.

Even McNeill's lack of subtlety didn't bother me too much.

But really, a story about the C'tan and AI and the Omnissiah and the fate of Earth and Mars?

It shouldn't hinge, nuWho-esque, on the power and wonderfulness of love.

The characters a nd plot was exceptionally fun to read through, but decisions involved vexes me no end. Galatea actually being an evil villain? Humbug.The Magi all being so human? Humbug! The Black Templars being less credible and convincing Space Marines than Uriel Ventris? HUMBUG!

I digress though. A lot of great stuff in here too. The Magi remained compelling for me - specifically Kryptaestrex, Azuramagelli and Blaylock - I have a secret wish the whole story had just been about them and the dubious assistance of 'is he a baddie (no, he isn't)' Galatea.

There's immense scenes to it too. Crossing the Halo Scar, the setting and reminisces of the Vitalis, the various disasters with the Titans, the reconomy on of the Cadians when Dahan's dome had been helpfully reordered by Speranza?

Some great stuff. It really made the trilogy a sheer joy to read. And I think it galvanised me that I'd like to see more. As adventures in 40k go, this is amongst the best. Perhaps not right on the level of Atlas Infernal or the Ahriman books, but it trumps a lot of others. I'd love to see Abnett, Chambers, Farrer or Sanders to turn their hands to this sort of thing. Obviously Abnett has Titanicus and Chambers has his brilliant Mechanicus shorts, but Farrer and Sanders have only sort of skirted the edges in passing. Then again, Farrer did the best Mechanicus in passing in the Shirakawa stories, and seeMs to have done a bit more recently, whilst we're still waiting on Sanders' Cybernetica novella.

Humbug. But also enjoyment.
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Re: Clerics, Aristocrats and Imaginary Friends of Mars

Postby LordLucan » Sun Jan 18, 2015 3:52 pm

I agree with much of that. the squabbling tech priests on the bridge were excellent.

kotov and telok basically came off like mad scientists, rather than the demented cyborg chimerae an Archmagos would really be.

The Tindalosi were excellent, and the glimpses of their history were entertaining, and how they 'feed' was something different.

Speranza's AI stuff was always good. Though I was hoping it was going to ultimately do more at the end, rather than merely super-saiyan ketov's data ghost.

The Dragon of Mars being rather explicitly stated to be a gigantic shard of a C'tan was both cool and disapointingly lacking nuance. However, I really liked how the shard in this book was visually described (that is, a nigh-imcomprehensible geometric anomaly, rather than merely 'a giant silver dude'). Also Old one technology and fricking Hrud are always welcome in my 40K!

(Also, Exnihilo burrowing a wound into the warp potentially, makes our 'C'tan were the original burrowers of the webway' theory hold up a bit more)

Roboute Surcouf and his crew are good for a laugh, and get some of the best casual dialogue.

Julius Hawke was great. His illustrious career as a complete shit is entertaining.

The method of Bielanna's healing of the halo scar wasn't really explained at all. It's ok finding the specific strand of fate to follow in order to solve the problem, but knowing how to fix something doesn't help you if you've not got the tools. She and her fellow eldar souls burrow down into the warp wound and... something about love or something?

I thought it was a good series, though not without its flaws.
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Re: Clerics, Aristocrats and Imaginary Friends of Mars

Postby sam vimes » Mon Jan 19, 2015 6:07 pm

Well its been a few months since I read the first two the one thing that really stays in my mind (beyond Hawke being a magnificent bastard :) ) and that I enjoyed a great deal was how the titan princeps were depicted, and the line about many wolves at the ships heart brought a grin to my face and as for Xisors line on mcneils depiction of space marines I answer back with this and why I like how he does his marines, it was in response to asking of I was a Iron Hands fan... I'm not for the most part:

Iron hands? Pfft not if they haven't been written by Graham all the other authors make them feel so bloody two dimensional for me anyway, Graham has the remarkable talent of showing the IH love of machines but at the same time bringing them across in a human enough way so I can get behind and understand them and there drive and emotions, yeah yeah the flesh is weak guys we know that's there thing but come on do more with it, Angel Exterminatus showed the differing ways the iron hands can be the two iron fraters were good contrasts.

The highlights for me so far (there are more than mentioned here) have been the Princeps and how they are as pack, the tech guy (terrible memory with names me) who got a augmetic arm that was to good for him? (really lads how do you rank augmetic arms when you can build a sodding titan you get bent out of shape over an arm?) the servitor who got his memories back, that was a case of the feels, especially when we found out just who the arco was... damn I got some chills from that scene.

I am looking forward to the third novel when it hits paperback, might cave and buy the hardback lets see how payday goes lol and thanks for reading my rambling and Xisor I still live in hope for you to actually one sodding day out right praise a book :lol:
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