Hello and welcome to another instalment of Black Library Weekly, my regular look at what’s been happening in the world of Black Library. It’s the week after the Weekender and I’m still buzzing from all the excitement back in Nottingham, which has even continued on by way of Warhammer Community. Don’t worry though, there’s more to talk about than just the Weekender – although if you’re enjoying the awesome image at the top of this article then you’ll be pleased to know that ALSO came out of the Weekender. I’ll stop talking about that eventually, I promise…
Another Monday, another Digital Monday short story – this time a Horus Heresy tale that was previously published in the anthologies Meduson and Shattered Legions. Written by Nick Kyme, Immortal Duty – £2.49 in ebook as always – is a strange, dark Iron Hands story that (if I’m being honest) isn’t one of my favourites. I don’t have a full review of this up, but it’s mentioned in my review of Shattered Legions. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still worth checking out if you haven’t already read it, but for me it’s perhaps not a story that lives long in the memory. Of course you might well disagree – so do check it out! If you haven’t read it yet, you can click on the image below to take a look at it on Amazon, and support Track of Words while you’re at it.
It probably won’t come as any surprise that, after the Weekender and as a middle-of-the-month week, it’s not been the busiest in terms of Black Library news. There are two main things I want to talk about, the first one being related to…you’ve guessed it, the Weekender. If you haven’t already checked this out though, trust me – you’ll want to.
In the final seminar last Sunday, Nick Kyme and Matt Renshaw showed off a whole host of upcoming titles for 2018, covering 40k, Age of Sigmar, the Horus Heresy and even old-school Warhammer (don’t get too excited, it’s an omnibus – not a brand new book…sorry). On Wednesday the kind folks at Warhammer Community posted good quality images of some of the titles that were announced, so you can take a gander at some really lovely artwork over here. Here’s an example:
That was perfect timing actually, as I’d been writing a post of my own to talk about these upcoming releases, and could include those great images where possible instead of the dodgy camera phone photos I’d taken at the event. If you want a bit more info on those releases, as well as a few that weren’t mentioned by the Community team (along with my dodgy photos of the covers) then have a look at my post here.
Speaking of the Community team…ever fancied working with them? If so, you’re in luck as there’s a Community Manager role available right now. Here’s the link to the job advert – click that to see the details. Suffice to say it looks like an awesome opportunity if you’re a) massively into Black Library (which I assume you are, if you’re reading this), b) the sort of person who loves networking and connecting with fans, and c) in Nottingham. Whoever gets the job, if you read Track of Words…let me know!
Oh, and I suppose I should mention that the Black Library website has hit the Christmas switch – the front page is all presents, wrapping paper and snowflakes. If nothing else, it’s strangely amusing to see angry Vulkan from the cover of Old Earth surrounded by nicely wrapped Christmas presents…surreal.
Come the weekend it’s time for new releases, and they don’t come much bigger than the latest Horus Heresy novel – Old Earth by Nick Kyme, which is book 47 in the series! You can pick this up in the usual formats, so that’s hardback (£20), ebook (£9.99) and MP3 audiobook (£29.99), and I’d definitely recommend that you do just that – I picked my copy up at the Weekender, and I can honestly say I read it in a single day. You can check out my review of it right here. If you need more of an incentive than that…you can also take a look at my RAPID FIRE interview with Nick about it here.
That’s it for brand new books, but fear not – the weekend also brought with it two paperbacks and an old classic in audiobook form. Paperbacks first, so let’s begin with The Crimson King by Graham McNeill. Book 44 in the Horus Heresy series, the hardback only came out in June so no surprise that this is the trade paperback edition – i.e. the bigger of the two paperback formats. You can pick it up for a snip at £12.99 – or hold on for a few more months until the mass market edition comes out. If you fancy a bit of info about The Crimson King, you can check out my review of it here. Alternatively if you fancy some Age of Sigmar you can pick up the paperback of Hallowed Knights: Plague Garden by Josh Reynolds for £8.99, which is a pound cheaper than the ebook. Bargain!
The final release of the weekend was the MP3 audiobook of Dan Abnett’s Ravenor Returned, the second in the series, which will set you back the sum of £29.99 for almost twelve hours of audio narrated by Toby Longworth. If it’s anything like the Eisenhorn audiobooks Toby’s narration will be brilliant – it’s been AGES since I read the Ravenor books, and I must say I’m tempted to check out the first two again in audiobook format. For the phone-centric among you, don’t forget you can pick this up on the Black Library Audio App, although as far as I can see it’s not yet available via Audible (even for those of us in the UK).
Thoughts on the week
As you can probably tell, I’ve spent most of the week still coming down off the Weekender buzz – I’m nearly back to normal now. Nearly. It’s at least partly down to all those lovely bits of cover art that have shown up this week – some of those pieces, like the Titans’ Bane and Neferata covers, are (in my opinion) among the most beautiful pieces of Warhammer artwork I think I’ve ever seen. They’re just so, so good!
Trying to look past the Weekender, it’s actually been quite a Heresy-filled week with Immortal Duty on Monday and then Old Earth on Saturday, along with the paperback of The Crimson King. To be honest I’m not a massive fan of Immortal Duty, but on the other hand it’s always good to see standalone eshorts of stories that were previously only available in anthologies. Although if you’ve not picked up either Meduson or Shattered Legions, I figure you’re probably not likely to be the biggest Iron Hands fan…so I’m not sure how much of a draw this one’s going to be.
Old Earth, however – that covers a lot of ground, and not just for Vulkan and the Salamanders, and I really think it’s both a good book and a story that any fan of the Horus Heresy is going to want to read. I’m not necessarily a huge advocate of the whole ‘let’s get to the Siege of Terra’ line of thinking, but there’s no doubt that we’re picking up speed to that end…and this is another book which contributes to it. I also can’t quite believe we’re at book 47 – with 48 due in February (The Burden of Loyalty) and two more novels (Wolfsbane and Slaves to Darkness) confirmed for the reasonably near future, we’re rapidly closing on number 50…that’s crazy! Brilliant, but crazy.
As usual, I’ll also give a quick list of the various posts I’ve made this week in case anyone’s missed something and wants to take a look:
- Necropolis by Dan Abnett.
- Black Library Weekender – Coming Soon.
- RAPID FIRE: Nick Kyme Talks Old Earth.
- Old Earth by Nick Kyme.
- Black Library Weekender 2017 – Roundup.
It’s been a long time coming. A really, really long time. Six years after Salvation’s Reach, book fourteen in the Gaunt’s Ghosts series is finally here…The Warmaster. It’s going to be available in both standard and limited editions (I’ve had my hands on the LE and it’s really, really nice – albeit very pricey) so you’ve got options, and I’m hopefully going to have a review ready for Saturday. Can’t wait! Just in case you’re wondering what all the fuss is about, a new omnibus of The Founding (books 1-3 in the series) is also coming out on Saturday.