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Avenging Son

Dawn of Fire, Book 1: Warhammer 40,000
By: Guy Haley
Narrated by: Mark Elstob
Length: 15 hrs and 46 mins
4.1 out of 5 stars (46 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Dawn of Fire Book 1

As the Indomitus Crusade spreads out across the galaxy, one battlefleet must face a dread Slaughter Host of Chaos. Their success or failure may define the very future of the crusade – and the Imperium. 

Listen to it because

The brand-new Warhammer 40,000 saga begins here. Experience the Indomitus Crusade and a battle that will be a tipping point for the future in an all-action tale by Guy Haley. 

The story

A great darkness has befallen the galaxy, and the armies of Chaos are rampant. To survive, humanity must retaliate and take back what they have lost. By the will of the reborn primarch, Roboute Guilliman, is the Indomitus Crusade launched – a military undertaking that eclipses all others in known history. From the Throneworld of Terra does the Avenging Son hurl his fleets, their mission the very salvation of mankind. 

As vessels in their thousands burn through the cold void, the attention of Fleetmistress VanLeskus turns to the Machorta Sound – a region under attack by a dreaded Slaughter Host of the Dark Gods. The success of the Indomitus Crusade will be determined by this conflict and the desperate mission of Battlegroup Saint Aster, led by Space Marine Lieutenant Messinius. Even then it is but a prelude to the forthcoming bloodshed.

Written by Guy Haley. Narrated by Mark Elstob.

©2020 Games Workshop Limited (P)2020 Games Workshop Limited

What listeners say about Avenging Son

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bad narrator

really bad narration. I wish they would just stick with their usual ones rather then branching out to these bad ones

10 people found this helpful

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Narration was so bad i couldn't finish it.

Narration was so bad i couldn't finish it. 50+ Warhammer books on Audible and this is the first I'm refunding.

8 people found this helpful

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Good story, and narration. Bad voice acting.

Book is written well. The narration of the standard prose is also clear and pleasant. However, the choice of voices for the characters is straight up awful. Most characters sound very nasal and weak, like someone pinching their nose and trying to do muppet impressions. The narration might describe a mighty superhuman with a deep voice booming over a battlefield, but then is presented like the whining of someone crossing Hans Moleman, and Mr burns from the Simpsons. It is extremely off putting.

4 people found this helpful

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A decent start to a new series

Recommended for all 40K fans, the story is an interesting take and perspectives of the start of the indomitus crusade. However for some reason the performances when it came to roboute guilliman and other space marines, sounded like they were all on the verge of falling asleep. It got so frustrating and was on the verge of ruining the story. Luckily the performers voice for non space marine characters was fine. A different take on guilliman and other space marine voices in the future would serve the series better

3 people found this helpful

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Good Start

This books winds back to the intro of Primaris and has some insight into their mindset. Good start with the slight hint that Necrons are the new badness. Only downside was the performance was hard to listen too.

1 person found this helpful

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Awesome novel, but Bobby G's voice is awful

Awesome novel, but Guilliman's voice choice by the narrator was atrocious!! The dide sounds more like Dracula than the Avenging Son. Otherwise brilliant entry into Black Library and modern 40k

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Unsuitable narrator

While the story itself was good enough, the narrator was completely unsuitable for the setting. Space Marines sound like aristocratic british officers and Guilliman sounds outright effete! Takes away some of the grimdark atmosphere.

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Great First in the Series

The story was on par with the Horus Heresy series and I'm looking forward to seeing some of the initial ideas fleshed out. voices were a little irritating in some parts and I agree with other reviews that the voice of the primarch does not suit; but then again how do we know what a 10,000 years old demigod sounds like

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Interesting story, ruined by the narrator! Better off reading this one

All in all a good book, but I found listening to the reader to be an absolute slog. The voices he gives the characters range from comically exaggerate to flat out obnoxious and it makes the experience. This one is better of read rather than listened too, the narrating is not of the quality the other warhammer books have on this site.

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Wide spanning story

This is a great story following several threads and some unlikely characters to find itself exploring some often passingly considered “realities” of life in the imperium’s 41st millennium

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  • J. Scott
  • 18-08-2020

Narrator kills this audio book

The Author wrote a great story, the narrator told it horribly. His non character voice is great and I can understand why they picked him, but his character voices are not only not 40k but extremely poor. I had to relisten to dialogue multiple times because I was too busy thinking about how bad the voices are. The primarch is the worst, he sounds like Handsome Squidward looks but has cadence of the sloth from Zootopia. Why was John Banks not used to for this novel? He does the best voice for him, with The gentleman who did Devastation of Baal a close second. There is so much source material on how he should sound that it appears the narrator did zero work. The Space Marines don't sound like Space Marines, nor did the naval crew. This should be taken down and redone, buy the book and actual read it. In it's current form this is a flop. Edit: I exchanged this book for the Ahriman Exile book not realizing it was narrated by the same guy and I decided to give this guy a second chance and holy **** in the context of voicing chaos marines this guy does a great job. The same voices I complained about above are absolutely amazing when coming out of chaos marines. The voice he used for Bobby G is awful but when it comes out of a chaos lord its great. So much so I felt horrible about writing this review and felt the need to add this.

25 people found this helpful

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  • Thomas
  • 16-08-2020

Mark Elstob should stay away from 40K

I cant listen to this book anymore, Mark Elstob does not have the voice for the 40K. I love Guy Haley books so ill buy the book instead.

25 people found this helpful

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  • Aaron
  • 17-08-2020

Terrible narration

I just couldnt get around the terrible narration of the book enough to really enjoy the story. feels like I wasted my money on this one.

19 people found this helpful

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  • Rick
  • 18-08-2020

It was fine until Gulliman spoke

There are several reviews here that call out the narrator as preforming poorly. I take these reviews with a grain of salt because I find that sometimes people chaff at odd things. I listened to the preview for the book and though “Oh, he’s a bit green but it’s fine.” I couldn’t have been more wrong. The first chapter has some less than ideal voice work for Astartes, the second chapter has some very gimmicky Ad Mech voices, and then chapter three we get to Gulliman. The moment Mark Elstob pitched his Gulliman voice he should have been fired. The Black Library production staff that decided this was ok need to be fired. I’m not sure I can finish this book. I’ve gotten to chapter five but every passage of dialogue is harder and harder to tolerate. It’s as if Spongebob was stuck doing a Squidward impersonation but they were raised by an old timey British Aristocrat and they can only speak through their noses nose.

16 people found this helpful

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  • Wulfy
  • 18-08-2020

I don’t feel good listening to this

This is one book that will be better read not listened to. The voices this actor uses to portray the primach is unsettling and stopped me listening to it immediately. He makes every captain and leader sound like the oldest most pompous 1930 officer. It doesn’t sound right and you will often get thrown off. DO NOT BUY IF NOT SAMPLED.

16 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 15-08-2020

Good Start

As usual, Guy Haley tells a great story and this one is no different in that regard. Loved it. What I'm I did not enjoy was the reader. Where did black library find this guy? He can't do character voices to save his life.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Zionmuffin
  • 22-08-2020

Mark Elstob lol

Mark's voice acting will paint a mental image of Roboute Guilliman as a dandy chap sporting a top hat, monocle, and a waxed mustache. Mark doesn't limit his vocal dissonance to Roboute, the women are voiced like the goblins from Lord of the Rings movies. Overall, Mark did read the book, and has a good grasp of the English language.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Zach Reeves
  • 18-08-2020

I usually love the narrator of Books from the Black Library.

Narration was awful and not at all what I’ve come to expect. Overall definitely worth a listen, just very disappointed in the choice of narrator.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Marcus DeFreitas
  • 16-08-2020

Roboute Guilliman

The voice of Roboute Guilliman just doesn't match what you'd expect from a Primarch it doesn't seem to fit the Primarchs personality at all it's quoted that his voice is so intense an yet soft an could speak in a manner that made even his commands an demands seem like suggestions.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Patrick Prager
  • 18-08-2020

Great story, cheesy narration

I love seeing the Indomitus crusade and the author does a great job with it. The narrator does so many cheesy nasally voices though that are distracting.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Danielle
  • 15-08-2020

Excellent, but some voices are jarring

Great story with very interesting lore, but Guilliman's voice is a crime against the imperiaium.

19 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 17-08-2020

Why narrator?!

The narrators choice of voice for guilliman is an greater atrocity than what horus did to the fabulous hawk boi..

8 people found this helpful

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  • Iain Johnstone
  • 17-08-2020

Well that was psinfull

So I'm sure this would be a good book if you read it yourself but as an audio book the narrator butchered the voice of almost every space marine which is a real shame. I really like Guy Haley's work in general and the story is really good as long as Guilliman isn't involved but as soon as the narrator does his painfully cringe worthy voice for him it's hard to focus on the story. A real shame.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Matthew
  • 16-08-2020

Good story, poor narrator

Not made much headway yet but thus far an enjoyable book brought down by a poor narrator. He's been directed or decided to try to do a different voice for every speaking character. Sadly each voice is worse than the last and not one of them sounds even remotely natural. It's a shame because the narrator's normal voice is fine but his attempts to do silly voices for every character are downright cringeworthy. Just to give an idea of how bad some of these voices are: Think DoWs Indrick Boreale and tone it down maybe one or two degrees of cringe. I genuinely don't think I'm going to be able finish it, it's that bad - I get these to listen to in the car but I'll just buy the actual book I think, glad I used a credit on this rather than actually paying for it.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Pricy
  • 22-08-2020

Terrible narration

The book itself actually seems like it will be a really good read but unfortunately I've had to give up. I can't get pass the awful narration. The narrators normal voice is great, but the voices he tried to give to each of the characters really ruins the experience.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Mark
  • 18-08-2020

Great to go to sleep to

This book has the honour of being the first to send me to sleep. The voice acting is flat like he phoned it in. Such a shame as i had high hopes for this avoid unless you have a copious amount of credits or trouble sleeping

4 people found this helpful

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  • marco
  • 19-08-2020

Great but the voices need work

Really enjoyed the book but the space marine voices were definitely not ideal...... especially the G man. Apart from that I really liked the book. A good start to the new series and looking forward to more!!

3 people found this helpful

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  • m
  • 19-08-2020

Stick to the kindle or printed editions

The writing by Guy Haley is definitely up to his usual standard and enjoyable so far as I’ve listened. The narration is ok but omg the voice acting, the voices are truly horrendous. I can’t make out if Guilliman has suffered some sort of catastrophic brain injury or is taking huge quantities of something he really shouldn’t. Might just get the kindle edition to be honest

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-08-2020

Good story, voice acting missed the mark

Story was good overall, introduces a number of characters and works to flesh out their story lines which I assume will be built on in later books, Voice acting left a lot to be desired, Guilliman’s voice and a few other characters were not how I would have imagined at all, hopefully these can be addressed for the next instalment!

3 people found this helpful

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  • beefeb
  • 24-08-2020

Voice acting HORROR

Firstly, let me say I loved the story. Im really into the whole indomitus scenario and a massive 40k fan. There was however a real problem for me in this audiobook....the narration. The narrator, when using his normal voice, speaking the story was fine, was in fact good, however the voices he put on for the various characters really annoyed me....everyone of them sounded like whining, mewling, constipated idiots. It was painful to listen to them. It had me leaving the book regularly to get a rest from them...they were an utter ruination of the book overall. Please, please stop this voice acting....its not required in an audiobook, and in this case put my rating of the book from a 5 for the pure story to an overall rating of 3. I feel like im being unfair on the author, and really that's not my intent. Reading this story as a book would attract a 5star rating from me, but I am not rating the book....im narrating the audiobook....and on the voice acting I have to downgrade it to an overall 3. If the next book is narrated by the same person, I will simply not buy it.....sorry Mark Elstob, its nothing personal, but the voices.....leave them at home, just read the book.

2 people found this helpful