Luna Mendax

QUICK REVIEW : Luna Mendax – Graham McNeill

NOTE : If you haven’t read Vengeful Spirit, this review will contain spoilers.

Originally only available in the event-only 2013/14 Black Library Anthology, Graham McNeill’s short story Luna Medax follows on from the Garro audios Legion of One and Grey Angel, and fits in before McNeill’s own novel Vengeful Spirit. It finds the former Luna Wolf Garviel Loken in sombre mood, having found a measure of peace in solitude away from Malcador and the war in which he no longer understands his role. Troubled by gaps in his memories, when he is visited  by an uninvited guest Loken fails to recognise him at first, though when he does at last realise who his visitor is he struggles to understand how it could be possible.

Quiet and reflective, this is the very antithesis of the typical Black Library story, but it’s all the more powerful for being so starkly different. McNeill has a good track record with this sort of story – see The Last Church for another example – and he understands that sometimes it’s important to look away from the fighting and the epic conflicts, instead looking inward to the smaller, internal conflicts. Here we see Loken hiding from his own memories, not fully aware of what he’s doing or why, and visited by someone who might be a figment of his own imagination, or equally might be a reflection of the troubled times he lives in. It’s a measured, rather beautiful story that cleverly bridges the gap between the earlier part of Loken’s story and the next chapters to come, and very much deserves its long-awaited general release.

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