Black Library Weekly W/C 05/06/17

Hello and welcome to another instalment of Black Library Weekly, my regular look at what’s been happening in the world of Black Library. With the release of Games Workshop’s new edition of 40k fast approaching, there’s been a sense of anticipation all week. In Black Library terms that’s translated into some excellent news midweek, but a pretty quiet weekend. Let’s take a look…

Monday

This week’s Digital Monday short story was ANOTHER Blood Bowl tale, taking us up to twelve new stories. The Hack Attack (£2.49 on ebook as always) is an interesting one, for two reasons – firstly, it’s by Matt Forbeck, who wrote the original four Blood Bowl novels way back when – the idea is that it’s a bit of a retrospective, capping off Forbeck’s original series.

The other interesting thing about it is that, in my opinion, it’s the first of these new Blood Bowl stories that hasn’t hit the spot. I do wonder if it might be more interesting to anyone who’s read the original series (despite being a huge Blood Bowl fan, for some reason I never picked those books up), but at the same time I feel like it ought to work for anyone, whether they’re familiar with the characters or not.

Midweek

I’ve talked plenty before about how a pattern had developed over previous months, and based on that pattern I – and plenty of other people I saw talking online – was expecting to see September’s new Black Library releases appear on the Coming Soon page on Wednesday. Not least because Monday’s email newsletter from Black Library had included a link to the Coming Soon page and an image (see below) featuring sections of the covers that had been spotted in the wild last week.

As it happened, once again the pattern was disrupted – Wednesday came and went with no news. Thankfully, however, normal service was resumed on Thursday with four new titles showing up for September. Here’s a quick look at what’s coming up, in case you’ve not seen these yet:

  • Blackshields: The False War by Josh Reynolds – a Horus Heresy audio drama featuring ex-World Eater Endryd Haar.

  • Cadia Stands by Jusin D. Hill – a 40k novel set during the Gathering Storm. Excellent news, as Hill’s written some great short stories about Ursarkar Creed already.

  • Eight Lamentations: Spear of Destiny by Josh Reynolds – an Age of Sigmar novel which promises to be a classic quest story and the beginning of a new trilogy.

  • Watchers of the Throne: The Emperor’s Legion by Chris Wraight – a 40k novel featuring Custodes and Sisters of Silence…enough said, right? This one’s also available in a LOVELY looking limited edition hardback.

As always, when one month’s releases show up another’s go up for pre-order – so you can now order July’s new releases. Here’s a quick recap of those:

  • Dark Compliance by John French – a Horus Heresy audio drama.
  • Farsight: Crisis of Faith by Phil Kelly – a 40k T’au (new spelling, right?) novel.
  • The Horusian Wars: Resurrection by John French – the latest Inquisition novel, in standard and limited edition formats.
  • Lorgar: Bearer of the Word by Gav Thorpe – the next Primarchs novel in limited edition.
  • Perturabo: Hammer of Olympia by Guy Haley – the fourth Primarchs novel, now in standard hardback and ebook.
  • Shroud of Night by Andy Clark – a 40k Chaos Space Marines novel.

You noticed that last one, right? This made a very brief cameo a couple of months ago before it was pulled from the website, so it’s good to have it back. Here’s the lovely cover for you to check out:

AND that wasn’t all! If, like me, you’ve been waiting with baited breath for more information on this year’s Black Library Weekender…good news! Anyone who bought tickets for 2016’s Black Library Live! Event should have had an email giving priority booking, which presumably means that tickets will be available for general sale in the next week or so. If you’re after a bit more info:

  • 17th and 18th November 2017 at the Nottingham Belfry.
  • Tickets are £75 for the weekend.
  • Confirmed guests so far are Dan Abnett, Chris Dows and David Guymer.
  • Dan Abnett’s next Gaunt’s Ghosts novel The Warmaster will be available to buy!

That’s all very exciting, right? I’ve got my ticket, and I hope I see some of you guys there!

Weekend

After an exciting end to the week, the weekend has proved to be rather less interesting. It feels as though Games Workshop and Black Library are sort of holding their breath, waiting for the big #new40k release – as far as I can tell there’s nothing new from Black Library this weekend. Funnily enough Forge World didn’t seem to get the memo – not only have they put a bunch of cool new Blood Bowl minis and updated 40k army lists up for sale, they’ve also released the brand new £450 Thunderhawk!

Still, it’s not necessarily a bad thing to have a weekend here and there with nothing new – at the very least it gives our wallets a break! I don’t know about you, but I could DEFINITELY do with a bit of a break from buying books, financially speaking…

Thoughts on the week

Well, it’s been an interesting one, hasn’t it? I don’t think there’s much that needs to be said about the lack of new stuff at the weekend – anyone who’s a 40k fan is going to have plenty to keep themselves going next weekend. Typically, I’m actually going to be in New York next weekend, so won’t be able to pick up my copy of the new 40k box and book until a few days later…so I’m going to be jealously watching social media to see the reaction!

As for the rest of the week…it does feel as though the pattern we’d seen emerge over the last year or so is breaking down, but I don’t think that’s a problem really. September’s new titles are looking fantastic – I’m looking forward to every single one of these, and I think it’s going to be very hard to resist the temptation of that limited edition for Watchers of the Throne. For me though, I think Blackshields might just be the one I’m most excited about – that cover is AMAZING, and I’m very, very interested to see how Josh takes on the Horus Heresy.

Oh, and the Weekender? These events are always fun, both Black Library and Horus Heresy versions, but the last BL Weekender was a little…strained, shall we say, for various reasons. With all the positive movement that’s been happening with Games Workshop as a whole, however, I’m SO excited to see what the atmosphere’s going to be like this year. If you’re thinking of attending but haven’t made your mind up, it’s undoubtedly quite an expensive weekend once you’ve factored in the ticket, hotel room, potentially travel, food over the weekend, plus however much you end up spending on books…but you do get so much out of these weekends. The chance to hear the authors speak, get stuff signed, grab chats with them at the bar, meet and mingle with other fans…it’s totally worth it.

Coming up…

It looks like next weekend is going to see two new releases – Josh Reynolds’ Age of Sigmar novel Plague Garden, and Chris Dows’ excellent Imperial Guard audio drama Scions of Elysia. I’ve reviewed that one already, so check that out here. As for whether there’s anything else going to happen during the week…only time will tell.

As always, if you’ve got any thoughts on the week’s news and releases please do give me a shout to let me know!

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