Hello and welcome to another instalment of Black Library Weekly, my regular look at what’s been happening in the world of Black Library. As expected, this week brought with it the latest tranche of upcoming titles to be announced, along with a fairly low key, but still interesting, mixture of releases. Let’s take a look..
Nicely tying in with last week’s standard release for Lorgar: Bearer of the Word, the Digital Monday short story this week was another Word Bearers tale – Vox Dominus by Anthony Reynolds (£2.49 in ebook, as usual). Following on from the end of Reynolds’ Word Bearers trilogy, and therefore a bit of a spoiler for anyone who might read this first, it’s a well-crafted and enjoyable story – if you’ve already got there Treacheries of the Space Marines anthology, you can find this in there, otherwise it’s well worth checking out. You can read my review here. It does rather leave things hanging, so you might want to check out The Tallyman afterwards, although that also ends in a similar way.
If you’ve been following these weekly posts then you’ll probably know to have expected January’s upcoming releases to show up on Wednesday, and Black Library didn’t disappoint. In fact, for the first time (as far as I’m aware) they’ve actually included upcoming omnibuses as well as brand new titles, which is cool. Here’s my usual quick rundown of what’s been announced:
Ferrus Manus: The Gorgon of Medusa by David Guymer
Book number seven in the Primarchs series, and Guymer’s first contribution (in fact his first Heresy-related contribution of any sort), available as usual in limited edition format to begin with. This should be a really interesting one, as there have been so few Ferrus Manus stories so far…for obvious reasons.
Fulgrim: The Palatine Phoenix by Josh Reynolds
The standard edition of Josh’s Primarchs novel, after its October limited edition release. I’m really, really looking forward to this one – should be something a bit different I think.
Sons of the Hydra by Rob Sanders
A new Alpha Legion novel, you say? From Rob Sanders? Yes please! On the one hand, Rob’s short story Unearthed, which features Alpha Legion and the Inquisition, was a bit disappointing. On the other hand, this is the man who gave us The Serpent Beneath and The Harrowing – so let’s hope it’s more like the latter than the former!
Castellan by David Annandale
The follow-up to Warden of the Blade, this time bringing Castellan Crowe into the Dark Imperium. The first book was super dark, and this promises to be more of the same, which sounds good to me.
Corsair: The Face of the Void by James Swallow
A new Rogue Trader audio drama from the man who brought us Garro, and hopefully the first in a new series – I really couldn’t be much more excited about this one!
Rogue Trader: The Omnibus by Andy Hoare
Speaking of Rogue Traders…this collects together Andy Hoare’s two Rogue Trader novels Rogue Star and Star of Damocles along with his White Scars novel Savage Scars. I can’t say I remember that being linked to his Rogue Trader novels (it’s been a LONG time), but nevertheless this should be good.
Vampire Wars: The Von Carstein Trilogy by Steven Savile
The latest old-school Warhammer books to get the Warhammer Chronicles omnibus treatment, this collects Savile’s novels Inheritance, Dominion and Retribution into a single volume. I think we’re all waiting for Gotrek and Felix to get the re-release treatment, but in the meantime this should be an interesting bit of nostalgia.
No brand new releases this weekend, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it hasn’t been an interesting one – it really has. Not only has it brought three new paperbacks (well, one of those is more of a reprint), it also saw some very interesting Weekender-related news that will be of interest even to those not attending the event. Intrigued? Read on…
First, those paperbacks. If you read last week’s Black Library Weekly post you may remember that I suggested we were due to see paperback releases for Baneblade, Shadowsword and The Silent War…all three of which showed up this week! Technically Baneblade is more of a reprint – I’ve got a copy from 2013 – but it does make sense to re-release it alongside the paperback of its sequel Shadowsword, both for £8.99. Interestingly, due to the vagaries of Black Library’s pricing scheme, the ebook for Shadowsword is still £9.99 while Baneblade’s equivalent is only £6.99. You can also still buy both in £18 hardback if you’d prefer. The Silent War – book 37 in the Horus Heresy – is now available in mass market paperback (i.e. the small version) for £7.99.
It came as quite a surprise to me, given that recent Weekender news has tended to show up on Wednesdays, but Saturday brought with it confirmation of a whole host of titles that are going to be available to buy first at the Weekender in November. Some of these have been listed as such for a while, but others are newly-announced, and have now been added to the Coming Soon section for November or December – hence why this news should be of interest to everybody, not just those attending the Weekender. I’ve not included the titles that were already announced, but here’s a list of the newly confirmed releases:
Deathwatch: The Omnibus by various authors. If you look at the list of stories you’ll see this includes three novels, one of which seems to have a proper title at last – Ian St. Martin’s Kryptman’s War.
Kal Jerico: The Omnibus by Will McDermott and Gordon Rennie. As expected, given the new version of Necromunda on its way, we’re going to see some of the old fiction re-released. This is as good a place to start as any!
Legacy of Caliban boxed set by Gav Thorpe. The next LE boxed set, and it looks rather nice! If you’re a Dark Angels fan then this might just be £50 well spent – have a read of my post about the Ahriman boxed set for some thoughts on pricing.
Gaunt’s Ghosts: The Founding and Gaunt’s Ghosts: The Saint by Dan Abnett. The first seven Gaunt’s Ghosts books, from First and Only up to Sabbat Martyr, in two rather nice looking paperback omnibuses.
The Sundering by Gav Thorpe. Another trilogy getting an omnibus in the growing Warhammer Chronicles series, this time looking at the story of the Elves – Malekith, Shadow King and Caledor.
A Deadly Wit by Gav Thorpe. A brand new Harlequins audio drama, which should be an interesting auditory experience!
You can find a full list of what Black Library say will be available at the Weekender here. You’ll note as well that each of the titles now has a little ‘Get it first at the Black Library Weekender’ banner when you look at its product page.
A couple of really interesting things to note here – firstly, A Deadly Wit by Gav Thorpe. Gav mentioned this briefly in his recent interview, and it looks like it’s potentially scheduled for a full release in February or later given that it’s not showing up yet on the Coming Soon page. Secondly, while the overall list of Weekender titles spans releases from November, December and January, it doesn’t include all of those titles. For example Castellan and Sons of the Hydra are not included on the list, and – perhaps most interestingly – nor is the standard edition of Dan Abnett’s The Warmaster. The limited edition is, just not the standard. I always try to look for the positives, so I hope this is an oversight – if the LE is available and not the standard edition, I’ll be pretty disappointed…
Thoughts on the week
If it hadn’t been for the Weekender news I would have been saying that this week has been pretty much as expected, albeit with a couple more upcoming releases than we usually see. I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty excited about some of those new titles – looks like we’ve got lots to look forward to at the start of next year. Remember as well that there’s going to be some kind of Black Library celebrations, part of which will include the reprinting of Brothers of the Snake and Drachenfels and also the brand new Eisenhorn book from Dan Abnett – The Magos.
As it is, though, the Weekender news builds nicely on top of the expected upcoming releases, ramping up the excitement for the event but also – I hope – giving everyone who’s not attending a little bit more to look forward to. It looks like there are still tickets available for the Weekender, and in fact they’re even available to buy on the main Games Workshop website, which does suggest that maybe sales haven’t been quite as good as in previous years. So far, at least. I certainly hope it sells out in the end, as I’m sure everyone going wants the atmosphere to be as good as possible.
As for the books and audio dramas that are going to be available…well, it’s got the potential to be a very expensive weekend! I know there’s a lot that I’m really looking forward to picking up, even if I end up having to ration myself a bit!
One last thing for this section – I thought it might be useful for me to quickly list the reviews that I post each week here as well, just in case you fancy checking out something that you might have missed before. Here’s a quick rundown:
- Vox Dominus by Anthony Reynolds (short story – quick review).
- Blackshields: The False War by Josh Reynolds (audio drama).
- Daemon World by Ben Counter (novel).
- Watchers of the Throne: The Emperor’s Legion by Chris Wraight (novel).
Good news for Horus Heresy fans, as next week brings with it number 46 in the series – Ruinstorm by David Annandale. I don’t have a prediction this week for anything else, unless the next Digital Monday short story ties in somehow with this weekend’s tank-based paperbacks. I’m looking forward to finding out what it is, though…