If I were a network, I would be…

Warhammer 40,000 is a Sci-Fi Gold Mine

The first Warhammer 40,000 books I recall reading were Inquisitor by Ian Watson and Deathwing, a collection. My copy of Deathwing has different titles in it than the one Amazon currently has here. Both books were published in 1990 at about the same time that the Space Hulk game was released. I tried to get some friends into Warhammer or Warhammer 40,000 at the time but that never worked out. We did get a few Space Hulk games in though.

A few years ago, a good friend handed me the Eisenhorn omnibus saying “you have to read this.” At the time I just added it to my tall “to read” stack of some fairly random titles; Forbidden Archaeology, If Chins Could Kill, The History of the Vikings, Russia, The Five Rings, Satre’s Being and Nothingness… You get the picture. But I was ready for a diversion at the time. About a week later I had finished Eisenhorn which is amazingly fast for me. The Ravenor books were next followed by the entire Gaunt’s Ghosts run (eventually). That’s right, I’m thanking you Dan Abnett, and my friend Marc, for re-igniting this fire.

While pouring through these titles I got to looking around for some source or background material so that I could get more out of the books. I picked up some game books but they were a little dry compared to the fiction. I searched around the Black Library for something like an authors checklist or the like but no dice. The source is spread out around the various game books a sentence or paragraph at a time.

And then came the Heresy. The Horus Heresy, to be precise. With very little pre-amble, Dan Abnett kicked the series off with Horus Rising and jumped right in to the 30th Millennium. I’m currently through the first 14 books with two more waiting in the queue.

If anyone is interested in pulp sci-fi of epic scale, and endless depths, you’ll be hard-pressed to find anything better than the WH40K books. While I’m waiting for the next Heresy books to come out I’m dipping in to various Chaos Marine titles which are a very satisfying from a guilty pleasure perspective.

Posted by Mike Loseke on April 29th, 2011 :: Filed under Gaming,Reading,WH40K