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Summary

A Horus Heresy Character series novel.

Sigismund—First Captain, Emperor's Champion, the Eternal Crusader! The founder of the Black Templars was many things, and this novel brings him to life as never before.

Listen to it because....

Get a rare glimpse into the mortal life of one of the greatest champions of the Space Marines, before they were recruited. Sigismund’s beliefs would light a fire that still rages 10,000 years later.

The story:

The Great Crusade is ending. The Emperor has returned to Terra, while Horus remains among the stars to complete the unification of humanity.

As the Imperial armies fight the final battles of the age, Remembrancer Solomon Voss seeks the answer to one question—why does Sigismund, First Captain of the Imperial Fists and greatest champion of the Legions, believe that war will not end?

Granted a rare audience with the master of the Templars, the answer takes Voss on a revelatory journey to a time before Sigismund became a Space Marine, through his first battles and oaths to the bitterest duels between Legions.

Written by John French. Running time 6 hours 18 mins. Narrated by Timothy Watson.

©2022 Games Workshop Limited (P)2022 Games Workshop Limited

What listeners say about Sigismund: The Eternal Crusader

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A good look into the Legendary Black Templar

learning through the Remembrancer Voss is a good way to cover a lot of ground into what makes the eternal crusader tick.

we find out a lot behind the Emperor's champion that helps to display why he is a coveted character in the 30k setting.

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Short and Sweet

This isn't just good for a Warhammer book, this is simply a good book!
using an interview with a Remembrancer as a framing device to jump through events was great. Sigismund is written like a knight from Arthurian legend and it works here extremely well.
None of the short stories here lost my attention, especially so with great side characters like Fafnir and Kharn.

The voice actor did an amazing job, perfect for 40k.

Honestly this is one of the better 40k books I've read, it's a bit shorter but I enjoyed it start to finish. Give it a go.

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not bad at all. Actually pretty good.

A decent and well written dive into ol'stone face Sigi's life and personality. Some nice recollections from the early days of the Great crusade tingling a pleasant feeling of nostalgia with some insight into other legions workings as well. Good read. I would recommend and I am a Ultramarine fan boy so that should tell you something! :)

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Fascinating

A look at Sigismund giving him an origin and almost a career in the 8th Legion 😳 now that would be a book to read Timothy Watson is a great narrator and brings all the characters to life with aplomb

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They finally got it right!

One of the largest issues I have with the biographic novels in Black Library, is how often they end up being max 50% about the actual character. They take the framing device aka. Ghaz'gul's story being told to an inquisitor and that becomes a full fledge secondary plot taking up whole chapters.

This, is not one of those books. French has done a brilliant job of using the framing device, as a framing device and while sad that this has to be applauded, this is BL.

We get interesting bits of unknown lore, of both Sigismund and the astrates in general, and I really hope this is going to be the blue print for bio. Novels going forward.

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  • snozek
  • 27-04-22

Dorn's sons, philosophical nominalists?

Sigismund, without a doubt, is one of the greatest astartes of the Heresy Era. How awesome is it that there is finally an origin story for him!?!

Awesome, except where it wasn't.

So as for the performance, I am unfamiliar with Timothy Watson, but he sounds a lot like John Banks. . . except that almost every astartes voice is a blue-collar, south London mode of speech.

Why?

Why is it also that Archaemus, who is only scantily older than Sigismund, and who this very book says is cold as stone, is voiced like a kindly, warm, old grandfather who needs a blanket and some warm cocoa?

Bad job!

Apart from those irritations, at least the narrator was consistent and did not suffer other technical errors.

Why is our hero searching for "his truth"? There's a big difference between the search for absolute truth and passing, subjective, adolescent, nonsense.

Dorn and his legion are the DEFINITION of Realism, stolid, disciplined, concerned with the natures of things.

There were a few occasions of pretty serious lurches in tempo. There were times where all momentum in the story just snapped to a halt, and it sucked.

John French can write a good book, but here he cuts and pastes "the message" over what is an otherwise pretty good story.

The Grim Dark is not the place for Gen Z Modernism, soft accomodation, and social justice warriors. Those people get stepped on, chewed up, spit out, and are soul fuel for the uncaring dark gods of the Warp!

Why is the hardest of the hard, Sigismund, going all "identifying my truth"?

Most of the book was pretty good. Narration was bad. Ham-handed messaging and an inability to grasp real human motivations and philosophy hurt John French in this book.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Cyndi
  • 25-04-22

Incredible

The format returns to that of the most successful 40k books wherein the post-human experiences of a space marine are filtered through a solid human character. The pacing is excellent. The motifs commonly wrapped around Sigismund - the stillness in a moment where the drops of rain slow to pause, the strength of the character in his refusal to stay down when he falls, the cold efficiency of his being - are expounded upon without feeling ham-fisted. Instead, they are deftly woven into the story and its structure. There is a great balance between pieces of lore we already know and new ones like his experience being chosen as a child for reforging into astartes. This book is now among my top 5 Horus Heresy novels at large. The narrator is also to Sigismund what Kevin Conroy is to the voice of Batman. It's so important to get right and Timothy Watson kills it. He also manages to voice distinct and well known characters like Kharn in the way we're used to hearing them - also important for immersion. 5/5, 10/10. Listen to this book if you like the Horus Heresy and if you like books in general.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 24-04-22

Love it

I always love to see the legions do their thing and get some interesting characters along the way. This book delivers on both of those. If you want to see the Imperial Fists and Sigismund do some cool stuff this one is a good choice.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Justin
  • 07-05-22

Suffers from modern 40k identity politics weirdness.

Behind every great violent space crusader is a legion of inexplicably virtuous and talented women and space marines of color.

Just the increasingly common 40k trend of having any competent human being be a woman of peerless virtue, from the noble orphan who taught Sigismund how to be brave, to the hyper competent commander who’s so stone cold she doesn’t even flinch at the personal command of Dorn despite even space marines reacting in awe.

Other stuff like the author not knowing about space marines having eidetic memory, and the author doesn’t really offer any insight into a reason why Sigismund is the best, he just is because of his “Truth” which somehow even the world eaters ramble about.

As usual with these books, performance is 10/10 writing is wildly varying.

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  • Abram Ortega
  • 26-04-22

very good

great narration and author, John French really knocks it out of the park, sigismund is built up as a great complex character.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mark T.
  • 11-05-22

one of the best warhammer 40k books

I was very engaged with the story, I started thinking the it was going to be a "ok" story but it blow my mind. I'm not even a fan of the imperial fist but this really grew on me

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  • Benjamin Hall
  • 10-05-22

simply excellent

this is a story I have waited a long time for!!! a treat for fans of the imperial fists or the black templars!!

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  • joshua osborn
  • 07-05-22

worth it

Well worth getting for any warhammer fan, especially if your a fan of either the Black Templars or the Imperial Fist.

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  • GentlemanBystander
  • 06-05-22

French fails to capitalize

This should have been a better story, lackluster writing is only exacerbated by a stilted performance with Watson succeeding to only add character to Sigismund by making him sound like a teenage edge-lord interpretation of bad-ass complete with the gravely voice and the perpetually irritated-sounding intonation of words...even when Sigismund was still a child.

This didn't feel like Sigismund, this felt more like a generic Astartes complete the cookie-cutter backstory of the orphan feral-boy growing up in the plot of a Death Wish movie, no hint was given as to what set him apart from his brothers and cousins beyond "being Sigismund" and that his success was "through the power of determination" which is too tired a battle-manga trope to dignify in what is supposed to be a serious work of the Grim Dark setting. He doesn't present as having better insight or deeper introspection than any of a panoply of Astartes as depicted throughout the myriad stories of both the Horus Heresy and 40K setting, less soulful than we've seen from Sigismund in previous writings, the stoic melancholy that has defined him in previous writings is absent here and he seems more like the recalcitrant child who hates his family and/or job versus the man who was willing to risk his life and honor to stand at the side of his Primarch-Father. If this was the first work in a series, it could be better excused.

The story isn't worth a stand-alone purchase, use a monthly credit then refund it after listening, it has no worth beyond that.

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  • NikEliJoe
  • 06-05-22

PERFECTION

Perfection at its absolute finest 👌
Love The Entire Listen.
Definitely worth the free Credit if uranyway shape or form