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Summary

Since the earliest days of the Great Crusade, Sanguinius - angelic primarch of the IXth Legion - was ever among the closest and most loyal of Horus' brothers. But the Blood Angels have long kept their true nature hidden from the rest of the Imperium, and when the Warmaster hints that the key to their salvation may lie in the ruins of a conquered world, the sons of Sanguinius race to claim it.

Now, as the revelation of their betrayal dawns and the traitors' hand is revealed, the Blood Angels must face all the warp-spawned armies of Chaos, as well their own personal daemons, upon the blasted plains of Signus Prime....

©2012 Games Workshop Limited (P)2012 Games Workshop Limited

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

My favourite legion but disappointing

I read the paperback version of this some time ago. At the time I felt that my passion for the Blood Angels Legion probably carried me through the book more than the story itself. I wanted to revisit the book and decided on downloading the audio version.

However, not only did I find that a second read didn’t improve things, but the book was even more disappointing due to the bizarre voice choices on some of the lead characters, notably Sanguinius. Put simply, none of the voices conveyed the blend that these guys have between being artists, who are compassionate for humans, contrasted with being phenomemal warriors whose martial expertise is respected and feared by the other legions.

To elaborate further on the story telling: this is possibly the first Horus Heresy book that’s supposed to define what the Blood Angels are really like. Sadly I found the depiction of who they are and how they fight to be generally underwhelming. The descriptions of the early battles, which are supposed to portray the shock and awe of the army, are flat and perfunctionary and language used fails to generate enough sense of a legion that is beautiful and artful in how it wages war and how it operates when not fighting, it’s compassion for the humans it’s supposed to protect nor for Its deep and terrible secret that threatens to destroy the entire legion.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great story let down by the narrator.

If like me you're a big fan of the Blood Angels then this is a great book, giving insight into Sanguinius and the origins of the flaw they are well known for. Strong characters, and plenty of action.
However the audio format let's it down somewhat as, although the narrator is generally good at narrating, his decisions regarding the voices of the characters make it feel less grimdark and more like a children's book at times, and is occasionally inconsistent.
That said, I still enjoyed the book a great deal and would recommend it.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great book

Just love how badass Sanguinius is.
also
I want daddy Sanguinius to choke me like he choked Ka'Bandha.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Epic story worth reading

A great book of the series. True plot along the main line finally featuring the angel.

1 person found this helpful

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cool book.

good to hear about the start of the blood Angel's curses before the heresy endgame.

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Slow

Gets off to a good start and slows right down. The big finale isn’t particularly captivating either

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slow burn

At first I found difficulty paying attention with the Novell's slow start but it suddenly picks up later on and finishes well (no spoilers!)

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    4 out of 5 stars

Another slow start, but what an ending.

This had somewhat of a calm start, up until 75% in, then it really took speed. The narrating of some characters voices left something to desire, but no dealbreaker. Preferences only.

I found the Angel to be a fantastic being, and with such a weight on his shoulders, and we are vrought along for some horrible steps in the Blood Angels pace towards war and hardships.

Some really intriguing plot characters, some quite disturbing events, and a lot more insight into the lore of the sons of Baal.

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One of the best in the Horus heresy series.

Such a great book. Gareth Armstrong performs amazingly in this book. The story is gripping and keeps you wanting more. If you like the blood angels then this is the book for you. It delves into there backstory and explains a lot of lore of why they do certain things.

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Enjoyed this one.

Pretty decent, enjoyed the story although the narration was occasionally a bit hammy. Overall would recommend.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-12-18

Not the best

Definitely one of the least interesting of the Horus Heresy titles I've read. The narrator's silly voices are a bit too much, especially the voice he gives Sanguinius. The story is fine, but flatly good vs evil. Blood angels stumble around beleaguered by demons invoked by Horus. Horus only appears as a psychic ghost twirling his mustache and channeling Palpatine from Star Wars. This is the only book I've read about Sanguinius and it makes him seem incredibly inept and impotent.

3 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Adrian Lopez
  • 03-06-20

Skip this one.

I love 40k and have listened to dozens of these audiobooks. At its best the lore is gripping, at its worst it’s a slog. This was painful to get through. This and Devastation of Baal have altogether ruined the Blood Angels for me. Normally a book that centers so much on a Primarch is bound to be interesting, but this depiction of Sanguinius is us being told how great and noble he is, without giving giving us material to inspire that opinion within us. Authors like ADB have made previously derpy Primarchs like Lorgar and Angron really compelling characters. This was just eminently forgettable, I was waiting for it to be over. And while I normally respect Gareth Armstrong’s level of vocal acting very much, this was perhaps the work of his I’ve enjoyed the least. His Slaaneshi demon was cringeworthy, and not in the good way. Again he’s a great talent, if you do listen to this please don’t judge him by this work.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • gil-ever
  • 04-01-21

go for it

a few interesting lore points, great epilogue let the hate of the algorithm flow in you

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 22-12-20

This book is a mixed bag.

Overall the story is pretty dry and boring, but it's really the voices the narrator does that really takes it down a peg. They are just way over the top.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 30-11-20

good performance, weak story

the book was alright. the narrator as well, except female voices. story is kinda lackluster

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Grey Wizard
  • 22-11-20

pretty rad

this book is a lot better than people give it credit for. Sanguinius is rad

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Megan Milroy
  • 30-09-20

The red angel

A fun and entertaining story of the. blood angels and their primarch. The ending is a bit of a cliff hanger that will leave you scrambling for the next book.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Cole Conner
  • 02-09-20

Interesting premise let down by narrative

Can be summed up as a story with an interesting premise that sets the stage for a mysterious conflict against an unknown supernatural enemy that is ultimately let down by the the author revealing all the cards to the reader, then inexplicably discarding the aspects of the story that built the mysterious and ethereal setting in favor of just slamming 2 armies into each other and shifting to a reliance on contrived plot points which felt very arbitrary to me.

Most of the characters are pretty 1-dimensional (arguably this changes for a few at the very end, but its kinda too late by then) and several plot holes become apparent as you progress. For example, how tough the bad guys are at different points in the narrative seems to be largely based on how the author needed to use them as plot devices at that point rather than there actually being a logical reason in the narrative. Or there is a certain tool/capability employed by the antagonists that is super effective, but after its first use we inexplicably never see it again, as if its existence wasnt considered holistically in the narrative, but rather purely as a way to achieve a certain plot point.

Its not all bad. If you are interested in the blood angels this book does give you a good understanding of their general backstory particularly relating to their genetic flaw, the red thirst. Sanguinius, though not brilliantly written, is at least the most interesting blood angels character here, having a few specific good moments that highlight his noble aspects as well as his flaws. If you just want to delve into the Blood Angels and learn more about them and their culture, this could be worth reading. just dont expect to be emotionally hooked by the plot or characters.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • JaredC
  • 11-07-20

Best so far.

Best story of the heresy so far. Action packed and filled with the minions of chaos.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Christian Hejesen
  • 09-07-20

Decent story, silly narrator

The story was decent, but not as great as some of the other books. The narrator has a good normal voice, but acting as the primarch and the demons sound so silly.