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The Talon of Horus: Warhammer 40,000

Black Legion, Book 1
Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
Series: Black Legion, Book 1
Length: 12 hrs and 54 mins
5 out of 5 stars (158 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When Horus fell, his Sons fell with him. A broken Legion, beset by rivalries and hunted by their erstwhile allies, the former Luna Wolves have scattered across the tortured realm of the Eye of Terror. And of Abaddon, greatest of the Warmaster's followers, nothing has been heard for many years. Until now....

©2014 Games Workshop Limited (P)2014 Games Workshop Limited

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Fantastic author, great book.

ADB really does justice to the entire feel of Warhammer. He is descriptive but not OVERLY descriptive to the point of tedium like some Black Library authors and conveys a sense of violence and blood in a way that would make Khorne smile. Overall a very good book that makes you unconsciously side with the Black Legion for once, I've already downloaded the next in the series!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Brilliant

By far the best reading of a book for me. Excellent diction, acting, sound quality of a story of which will make you a 40k fan of you are not already.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The best 40k publication I've ever read!

Absolutely loved it. It gives new insight and perspective into my favoured faction! Simply brilliant!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Review

Loved it. It is the first Warhammer 40k book I have listened to and I really enjoyed it.

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Meh!

Performed brilliantly, story and character development was insightful but novel was slow and drawn out. Took till the last few chapters for a battle worth mentioning to take place.

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  • Joe
  • 17-07-2019

Incredible imagination!

It is difficult to write a good villain. It takes true mastery to write an anti-hero that readers will absolutely love. Jonathan has managed to do just that. In a book packed with imaginative horrors that show up as beauty, dangerously broken characters that have real emotions, intelligence and empathy, the reader can't help but be drawn into seeing the "big bad guys" (and two gals) of the 40k universe as relatable. They see themselves as heroes. They have plausible reasons for acting as they do. And they will drag you into their story with glee.

If I had one gripe, its that there two sections in the novel - both battle scenes - that were narrated in passing, rather than being teased out. This was an artistic choice. The narrator of the story holds little value in the 'honour of war' seeing its acts of carnage as just 'work'. But the vouristic reader (or at least me) craved a little more detail.

In terms of performance, my wife (not a 40k fan) loved listening to it with me, describing it as 'radio play quality' from her childhood. It's really that good.

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Great Fluff

Very well read pulp sci-fi epic. Adds heaps of depth to the Chaos lore for a newcomer like myself. Loved the single perspective. Very very good.

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Incredible, A different look at chaos

As the title suggests, its a different look at chaos, not so much blood, guts and frothing demons but the intellectual side of it. This isnt the story of a madman that loves to kill, but one that was betrayed into it,. a great read/listen

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Good addition

Great addition to 40k universe and the character of Chaos marines has been more developed for the benefit.

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good shit

don't call me firefist why because it hurts my feelings probably the best thing I've heard from a Space Marine #snowflakespacemarine 🤣🤣🤣

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  • AKS
  • 29-11-2017

Superb story, superb performance

So very happy to see Black Library Books on Audible. I have read a number of the books but this was my first listen. Very satisfied.

Many regard Aaron Dembski-Bowden (ADB) as among if not the best author currently writing in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. He is especially good at writing chaos - the villains. He is able to find the right balance between keeping them evil, yet still giving them relatable purpose. His characters generally have much more depth than you will see in other Black Library books. Talon of Horus excels at this - we have an interesting stable of characters and, even more unusual for a Black Library book, there is character development. ADB accomplishes this by having the book effectively set in three different time periods: the main character (a chaos sorcerer) is recounting a tale to the Inquisition in the 40,000 "present," the bulk of the story is about the early formation of the Black Legion after the Horus Heresy, yet he also peppers the narrative with the main character's memories of his homeworld (Tizca) at the start of the Heresy. The story itself rises well above the normal "bolter porn" of Black Library novels and is made compelling by leaving plenty of mystery surrounding the whereabouts and actions of Abaddon. Even the World Eater character is interesting and these fellows are usually utterly two-dimensional in these stories. With this story he basically takes what I always felt was the most boring of the chaos space marine legions and makes them among the most interesting.

As audiobook the performance is superb - probably the best I have heard for the fantasy/sci-fi genre. The narrator really understands the characters and manages to give them each distinctive voices. So often I find the narration on these types of novels actually hurts the story. Not so here - I am very happy I listened to this as opposed to reading it.

In short, a must have for any fan of the Warhammer 40,000 universe. Even if you are not, its a good listen. I'd recommend doing a bit of background reading on the universe, the Horus Heresy, the original space marine legions, and the key characters that exist outside of this book - namely Horus and Abaddon. With that groundwork you should be able to follow along easy enough.

24 of 24 people found this review helpful

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  • 匿名
  • 30-05-2018

Best Audio Book I've Ever Heard

Wow. Just wow. Jonathan if you're reading this, brilliant job mate. You did more than read this fantastic work of fiction, you read between the lines to deliver an incredible experience. I'm pretty new to audio books, most i've heard of them are dull retellings with little inflection. You've earned a lifelong fan.

Though the storyteller is phenomenal, yes, the book itself is fantastic too. Slowly, GW is filling in the gaps left in the fluff. It feels like Lord of the Rings, an epic quest to reach a goal with a rag tag group of heroes (villains) and you get a front seat to the action. Amazing storytelling coupled with just darn good writing. I mean, you really feel like you're a part of the quest to find the flagship "Vengeful Spirit" and it's evil captain. The characters are all likable (Telemacon and Gaia in particular being my favorites) and their motives all make sense. There's breaks in the fighting, sure, but each chapter is as interesting as the last, weather words are exchanged or bolter fire.

5/5 Stars. This pairing of storyteller and author is perfect and I'm just about to start their next book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Andrew Arbaiza
  • 23-10-2018

Love that ADB.

I really enjoyed this story and rendition. This was my first audio book and will definitely be the reason I maintain this audible subscription. I love ADB and this is no exception. Really brings some humanity and description to chaos.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • BringOnTheCold
  • 09-02-2019

Don't listen if you don't like collecting Chaos SM

Amazing. Abaddon is misrepresented in all other fluff and literature after listening to this book. He is collected, charismatic, and a badass.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • 匿名
  • 26-10-2018

great narrator

more voices then any other I've heard so far. gonna be hard to here another

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-09-2018

Fantastic

ADB, maintaining his crown as my favorite 40K author on Terra. This story really made me feel the hand of the ship on my shoulder. By the Fire!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Sam
  • 28-03-2018

Absolute masterpiece

First and foremost I just want to say that Jonathan Keeble is an absolute artist when he does these voices. Never before have I heard a voice actor nail the demons in this book, because it absolutely can’t be easy. Nonetheless, keeble puts serious effort into these voices. Anyway, this book is absolutely awesome, it takes the imperium you know and love and puts it into a moral gray area. This book really makes you think about who are the good guys!!! Anyway, this book does a great job of exploring the chaos marines as more than just mindless worshippers of the chaos gods. It would be helpful for you to understand at least some of the lore before you sink your teeth into this one. Fabulous book, probably my favorite! Already listened through the sequel and absolutely can’t wait for the final book of the trilogy!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Antonio Ríos Ramírez
  • 16-03-2018

Good book with some flaws

My only gripe with the book is that the protagonist is always described as winning his battles the same way: by psychically unmaking his enemies. Otherwise it's a worthwhile read, but be prepared to get bored during most battle scenes

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Benny R. Guzman
  • 06-03-2018

Finally, 3 dimensional bad guys.

ADB is in my opinion, the best writer at Black Library right now and this book is no surprise. After listening to this book, it’s very difficult to look at the bad guys as just plain old bad guys. It’s books like this one and his night Lords series that make the bad guys seem so good. Why can’t ADB write for the Blood Angels?!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • William Ogden
  • 07-08-2019

Plagiarism ( my review, not the book. )

40k version of band-of-brothers. A great book and solid narration. The chaos space marine(s) unite to discard the memories and failures of their gene-sire(s). Abaddon The Despoiler, does not have the hot-blooded temper GW wrote him as having. Admittedly he should not be as rage filled as a devout follower of the Khorne. The Black Legion rediscover “ ad hoc solutions that simply popped out of the prevailing situation. “. The narration of the Dark Eldar Nefertari sounds more akin to a fictional space creature with a Slavic accent. In this book, The Eaters of Worlds with the “ Butcher’s Nails “ in their skulls are far too mellow and easy to get along with. Iskandar Khayon Is terribly OP, he often does things the hardest way possible to flaunt his abilities as a psyker and sorcerer. The only Thousand Sons space marine, that I know of, to have a Khorne blood-thirster bound to his will and able to use like a poker player using that secret ace-in-the-hole card. Telemachon Lyral Is nothing more than a carbon copy of another of the Emperor's Children, namely Lucius the Eternal and/or Julius Kaesoron. All in all, a great book and well narrated.

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  • Jordan Matysiak
  • 01-12-2017

Enthralling, this book got me into audiobooks

This book is responsible for getting me into audiobooks, I redeemed my free trial for it then canceled. Now I plan to continue the subscription.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • 匿名
  • 07-10-2017

Absolutely excellent!

I fell in love with chaos after listening to this. For 40k fans. Prepare to start a new army.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • A
  • 05-10-2017

An engaging tale of Warhammer 40,000 history

The origin of the Black Legion was always a part of the lore of Warhammer 40k, but never more then a couple of paragraphs.

Aaron Dembski-Bowden has crafted a wonderful story developing this important part of the universe, creating and developing the characters of Chaos beyond raving mad men. They have goals, relationships and ideals.

Jonathan Keeble is the perfect narrator for this book, his measured tones, remind me of everyones favorite teacher, telling a story and weaving the lessons into his tale.

I highly recommend this story to anyone wanting to delve into the 41st Millennium

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • MDevlia
  • 03-10-2017

A good listen

I enjoyed this book, and have continued the series for myself as it delves into the beginnings of the Crusades of Abaddon from the perspective of one of his commanders.
The story is interesting and captivating at times, however at times there is a lot of detail to the minor details which pulls away from the story at times, a minor issue, that is my own problem with the writing than actually with the content of the book.
The performance is thoroughly enthralling, however he mispronounces a few words, despite this his voice is excellent and does not pull away from the book and its content.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Ian James Cannon
  • 04-10-2017

Surprisingly well written.

Great voice actor/performance.
Not sure it's for me though, I'm not left wanting more, as it's not the kind of story I'd normally be interested in. Still, I give the story 4 stars as it was good enough to make me listen to the end.
I describe it as surprisingly well written, as I typically find most that try to write from the point of view of 'evil' either write what reads as petty childish characters, or fetishize the acts. This does neither, which seems rare enough as to be commendable.
Still even well written, my interest in following what are effectively villains just isn't strong enough to make me continue the series personally. Hopefully those that enjoy such stories/perspectives may find this review helpful and enjoy the series in full.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Sewell247
  • 26-09-2018

Lonely Planet: The Warp

"I've never experienced a book so apt at describing the warp"- Warmaster Abbadon.

"This book showed me those little secret places in the Eye of Terror that just make this place so special"- Telemachon Lyras.

"If you want to get the best out of your time in the warp, you need this book. When there's so many slaves to take and so little time, you really need to maximise your killing"- Falkus Kibre.

"The Vengeful Spirit is a MUST, for anyone visiting The Warp. Such a wonderful place, and the armoury, WOW! Was not expecting that at all. We even got to see it fly, which we were told by our guide/slave master just never happens"- Gyre.

This book feels more like a guide to how The Eye of Terror works than actually about the story of finding Abaddon and the start of his journey to being the biggest badass in The Warp. That being said, its a great book, really well written and one I loved to listen to. I'm not a fan of Chaos or that particularly dark side in this dark galaxy, but I really enjoyed seeing a different side and something really not Horus Heresy based. Reluctantly likeable characters and a sense of wanting to be a part of what they are making with The Black Legion is great.The book overall is fantastic and shows what can be achieved in creating complex characters in the 40K universe. A must read for anyone into 40K, this book is a milestone for the narrative, and for one of its most influential characters. You don't have the Black Crusades without Abaddon, and that all starts here. This is the origins of The Long War and that's something worth listening to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • mick
  • 20-11-2017

Wow

An excellent read. superbly written with outstanding narration. Can't wait to start the next book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs Gail Williscroft
  • 20-11-2017

Thrilling

Brilliant book. Truly gripping. It's great to see things from the view of the fallen sons

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jonathan Alarcon Fuentes
  • 19-11-2017

A marvellous story

Love the book and the voice fits perfectly, can't wait till I start the next one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mark Phillips
  • 08-10-2017

Yet another classic by Aaron Dembski-Bowden

Aaron Dembski-Bowden is the foremost better writer of gripping stories from the Black Library. Everytime i listen to a something written by Aaron, i find myself immersed in his story and as a bonus the story is also read by my personal favorite narrator Jonathan Keeble. I cannot recommend this audio book enough 10/10

3 of 4 people found this review helpful