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Summary

A Great War is coming, and it will engulf the Imperium of Man. The Space Marines of the Alpha Legion, the last and most secretive of all the Astartes brotherhoods, arrive on a heathen world to support the Imperial Army in a pacification campaign against strange and uncanny forces. But what drives the Alpha Legion? Can they be trusted, and what side will they choose when the Great War begins? Loyalties are put to the test, and the cunning schemes of an alien intelligence revealed, as the fate of mankind hangs in the balance.

©2008 Games Workshop Limited (P)2014 Games Workshop Limited

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

Fantastic novel - whimsical narrator

Reading Dan Abnett is often like going abroad with a minimum understanding of the language. If you're willing to throw yourself in at the deeper ends, decipher a few words for yourself and wait for things to unfold, you savour the immersion that much more.

A shame then that one of the outstanding Heresy novels is read in a tone more suited to a whimsical fantasy: indeed at times I was convinced it was Simon Prebble reading Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. While Abnett's novel is more complex and more subtle than some of the Heresy novels (Battle for the Abyss, Mechanicum) it's still pure space opera and deserves someone more adept at the voices of war. While the Legion themselves are given good enough voices, some of the Imperials veer between Carry On and Only Fools, always threatening to drop the listener out of the experience. Indeed at times one of the early characters is only moments away from tugging at his forelock and declaring "Gawd bless the Queen Mum". David Timson is a very good narrator and for the right material he's unbeatable - after listening to Fulgrim you can't imagine anyone else doing it justice. For Legion, he's just wrong.

Luckily, as a good narrator can carry a lesser novel the reverse is true. Legion is for the most part a thriller, very much in the vein of early Frederick Forsyth. It's well structured, deftly written and filled with interesting and compelling characters. If Abnett has a weakness, its his fondness for deus ex machina (most of the early Gaunt's Ghosts novels) but here it truly plays to the novel's strength.

As a standalone in the 40k universe it works extremely well, and as part of the Heresy its up there with Fulgrim or Flight of the Eisenstein. Buy with a little caution

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Action packed

First heresy book to contain non-hostile xenos interaction and gives a much more human perspective on the heresy than we've had so far. Awesome book

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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A thriller in the Dark Millennium.

When I first read this book a couple of years ago it was my first dive into Warhammer. And and as I went on with with other books I held them up to the standard of this Legion.

I love legion. It has grim action and a story that twists and turns. Characters that are memorable and relatable.

It's pacing is a little different from most other HH novels, then again this book is about spies and conspiracies.

Take a listen. It's well worth the money.

John did nothing wrong.

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Pay attention at all costs.

You will go back to this book again and again. THe writing is tight, if you switch off for a moment you will miss a key character action or plot point. The prelude hooked me in and wanted to find out what happened throughout. It has great pacing, twists and turns and kept me engaged.
On the characters, these are great - John Grammaticus is one of my favourite in the Heresy. He has to make some key decisions about how he will achieve his goals - namely who he will use. The Alpha Legion are depicted really well and make for an interesting legion - "I am Alpharius" being a repeating theme which throws up hilarity and intrigue.
The dialogue is excellent and has an element of conflict that make the characters sound interesting.

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Really good!

Very good narrator with superb immersion and a gripping story all the way through! Highly recimmended

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Dull

The least HH story so far, Alpha legion obscureness secured in a book that drags on without interesting action.

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Enjoyed

Having not enjoyed this narrators previous efforts in Fulgrim, I was really surprised to find I thoroughly enjoyed his prortrayal of the characters this time around, especially the men from the joker and clown regiments!
I did find the first hour or so a struggle though and took me a while to work out which character was which (but this could well have been my frame of mind at the time!), but in the end I thought it was a really good story, very well done, taking a side approach at the heresy and keeping you guessing all the way!

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best one so far

interesting to see it from non Astartes view - voice acting was superb

alpha legion are sick

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Was average

Pretty slow, gets more entertaining as it goes on but wasn’t as good at the previous books in the series, the voice acting of David timsom was good though

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  • Ritch
  • United Kingdom
  • 13-03-18

Slow to get going but a blistering story

The story is a little slow to get going and, having read all previous Horus Heresy books which are centred around Astartes, feels a bit odd at first. Nonetheless, once you get into the second and third chapters, it starts to become addictive and even by the end you wonder if the long awaited twist has happened or if the Astartes are just following their own destiny. Battle scenes and action sequences are blistering and the most mysterious of the Astartes Legions earn their reputation as mysteries.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-05-18

Excellent adventure!

great performance and a wonderful Dan Abnett story that plays out like a classic spy thriller!

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  • Scott J Palmer
  • 01-05-18

Yet, another rad contribution to the Horus heresy

I loved it. I'm a fan of the Warhammer storyline, so I'm a bit biased. That being said, I thought it was a great story, and well narrated.

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  • William Mazurek
  • 11-04-18

Great Story!!

Great story in the Horus Heresy series. Very different from most of the novels, whichnis fitting since the Alpha Legion is different from the other legions in many ways. Definately worth your time.

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  • Lambert
  • 06-04-18

One of the best Horus Heresy books

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. This book is quite simply amazing. Dan Abnett absolutely nails the feel of the Alpha Legion, and how they are so very different than the other Legions. The last line is pure gold.

Who was your favorite character and why?

It's a toss up between Alpharius, Alpharius and Alpharius

What about David Timson’s performance did you like?

I really liked the accents he did for the various characters. Alpharius, Bronzi and Soneka especially have really distinct, flavourful portrayals

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

"For the Emperor"

No more needs said. As I write this I am getting goosebumps remembering it.

Any additional comments?

I am midway through Battle for the Abyss as I write this review, having read all of the previous installments, and this is one of the very best so far. Absolutely thrilling read.

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  • Korben Dallas
  • 06-04-18

Biggest Secrets revealed

After this you will want to build an Alpha Legion Army for 30k or 40k wargames.

If you don’t play this is the best Horus Heresy Novel involving spy craft.

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  • Darryll W. Kipp Jr.
  • 26-03-18

Dan Abnett at it again

Absolutely enjoyed this book. The Alpha Legion sounded like an amazing Astartes unit. The book I will read again.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 25-03-18

Great Story

I loved the book, truly well written and expertly read!
The unbelievable story of Alpharius!

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  • Michael
  • 14-03-18

A good show for the Alpha Legion

This is such a good book and shows the insidiousness and strength of this Legion. a must read for any Horus Heresy fan and especially if your a fan or wish to know more of the Alpha Legion.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 14-03-18

starts off slow, but gets better at end

starts off slow but gets better toward the end. good to listen to if you like Alpha Legion

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  • Adam
  • 08-03-18

Starts out slow but worth it!

Although this book had a huge build up, it was well worth it! Really enjoyed it and hope to visit these characters later in the Horus Heresy series!