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Beer Review 125 // Raspberry Universe - Saison by Great Lakes Brewery.

Beer glorious beer. I do enjoy a beer, and it is with this in mind, that for 2021, I am slowing down my drinking. Moving forwards, I am only enjoying a drink on a Wednesday and a Saturday. Why? Because I want to, I want to blog more about comics and figures and not feel the pressure of posting up a new beer picture every day of the week. Now that we are three weeks into January, I am comfortable admitting I like this change. This week I am looking at Great Lakes Brewery from Toronto.

Great Lakes have produced in the past some of my favourite go-to brews, especially Octopus wants to Fight IPA. Meaning, when I had the chance to try Raspberry Universe, I jumped at it. Now, I slightly wished I read the label first. I was hoping for a sour or a fruited IPA. Instead, I got a Saison. For those who have followed my reviews, you will know by now I dislike a Saison yeasted beer. Something about either the spice or the flavouring of this yeast puts me off a beer. But hey, I had the beer so may as well try it.

The pour was beautiful as you can see in the picture. Bright beautiful red, capped by pink foaming head. The aroma is sweet raspberries and a candy/bubblegum hit (that is when I realized my Saison error). The taste was a little lacklustre across the board. I wanted more raspberry tartness, I wanted some lip-puckering, instead, it is gentle throughout. Very light, a little too sweet and just okay. Not bad in any way, just missed the mark for me like a lot of Saison do. Nothing against the brewery or the beer, just not for me.

Thanks for stopping by for the read. Feel free to drop me a follow or comment. Until next time cheers!

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Comic Review 119 // The Dead Man and Judge Dredd: Complete Case Files 14

Welcome to this week's comic review. Lucky for you, I am merging two graphic novels together in this post. The first graphic novel is The Dead Man, and the second is Judge Dredd: Complete Case Files 14. Together they form the Necropolis saga - aka the return of the Dark judges some of my favourite 2000 AD strips. Let us dive in.

Tales of the Dead Man. Written by John Wagner and illustrated by John Ridgway. 

"In the harsh wastelands of the Cursed Earth, Yassa Povey makes a gruesome discovery; the badly burned body of a dead man. But the 'dead man' lives and when Yassa takes him back to his village to help him recover, something evil follows. Soon villagers start dying and the Dead Man is sent into exile. Yassa follows, curious to know more about the stranger. However, it is a decision he will come to regret, as Yassa is plunged into a world of horror when the Dead Man discovers the shocking truth behind his identity!"

I remember reading this as a young child. Meaning I know the surprise twist. That in no way discouraged me from the entertaining read. Throughout, we watch Yassa unknowingly head straight into danger time and time again. What draws him into helping the Dead Man is never understood or explained, and we are left to believe he is just a pure soul. This is helpful as the Dead Man needs one to help face off against creeping horror that is stalking across the Cursed Earth. Now for the spoilers! If you wish to not know then stop reading now. The Dead Man is actually Judge Dredd, after taking the Long Walk he is attacked by the Sister's Phobia and Nausea and hounded across the Cursed Earth. By the end of the story, Yassa is left blinded by his experiences, whilst Dredd is ready to go save Mega-City One. This ending perfectly leads us into the Case Files Volume 14 which we will now delve into.


The graphic novel picks up straight from the above tale with Tale of Dead Man. Judge Dredd aka Dead Man is heading back to MC-1 and with his memory restored he starts to recall how this all happened. We learn of Dredd having severe doubts about the Justice System, his entire belief shaken beyond repair by a letter from a child. With doubts nagging in his mind Judge Dredd is forced to complete the training of Cadet Kraken, a former Judda and an actual clone brother of Dredd. During the final tests, Dredd realizes Kraken is flawed and fails him, before requesting to retire and take the long walk (leading us to the above Dead Man story). A great arc, for once showing that Dredd is only a human and that even he has doubts and fears. It also shows us an ageing Dredd, something not truly mentioned until now, but Dredd is noticing he is being slower with age. After this tale, we enter an official countdown of strips to Necropolis, a 5 strip countdown starting with Lethal Injection (which is technically 5 & 4 of the countdown).


Lethal Injection; brings back the team-up of Wagner and Ezquerra and I am taken back to reading this series in my youth and it brings forth a giddy excitement. In this issue, we follow Cadet Kraken as he is informed of Dredd's decision. As Judge Odell tells Kraken the news, they load into a Department truck and head off to the Resyk unit, where Kraken will be executed. Wanting to prove he is a true Judge and not a failure, Kraken grabs the lethal injection and injects. Following his demise, Kraken's body is claimed by Odell and they head to the Grand Halls. Here we discover that Kraken was actually being tested one final time and has passed. Now with a street Judges uniform, Kraken speaks with Chief Judge Silver and discovers he is to be Judge Dredd's replacement!


Countdown to Necropolis 3. Rights of Succession. Judge Kraken aka Judge Dredd is now on the streets. Fearing discovery of the deception, Chief Judge Silver is keeping Kraken working solo. The story is slightly a filler piece and spends most of the issue, working through Kraken's thoughts about the strength of a name. Ultimately he doesn't seem to care as long as he is serving the law. Kraken is growing on me, the only issue is I know what is going to happen, so I feel bad.

Countdown to Necropolis 2-1. Dear Annie. The last of the opening tales and more strangely zero Judge Dredd/Kraken.  The story opens with Chip writing a letter to an agony aunt style publication. Chip retells his concerns about his wife who had a run-in with Judge Death. Following her encounter she falls into a coma for days, upon awaking and returning home she is forever changed. Xena the wife becomes obsessed with Judge Death, believing herself to be his wife she plots to kill Chip. As we reach the end of the story Xena sacrifices Chip, this breaks her out of her hypnosis but it is too late the Sisters of Death are loose in the city.

Necropolis 26 parts. We are finally here, Necropolis. The Sisters of Death are loose in MC-1 and a chaotic adventure starts at Rowdy Yates in Dredd's apartment. The Sisters announce their present to Dredd and attempt to overwhelm him. The first attempt fails but they do manage to affect his mind and over time they wear down Kraken's defences until they finally control him. Now with Kraken as a puppet they use him to find a stronger host one PSI Judge Agee.

Judge Anderson discovers the plot and using her powers is able to force the information out of a confused Kraken. As the Justice Department mobilizes its might, the sisters strike. Within moments the Sisters have neutralized the force and have taken over Judge Kraken. Using him as a puppet they force him to attack Judge Anderson, but before he can finish the job Anderson is seemingly crushed by a tank! With Dredd in the Cursed Earth, Anderson dead and Kraken mind controlled the City is wide open to attack. With their new Judge Puppet, the Sisters use Kraken and the Tech 21 facility to bring the Dark Judges back from limbo, it would seem Judgement Day is here in MC-1.


From this, we jump into the Cursed Earth. With the Dead Man revealed to be Judge Dredd, we join him as he heads back to MC-1. Annoyingly we must have missed some adventure as Dredd has a car and a new companion called Lumps. As they travel the wasteland they are ambushed by a crazed woman who turns out to be former Chief Judge McGruder. But this unlikely trio isn't the only would-be heroes. Inside the city, a group of rookie cadets let by Cadet Giant are attempting to get out of the city, as they flee through the ruined city they manage to grab the attention of Judge Mortis. In a terrifying chase through the city, the cadet manages to escape with the help of a well-placed grenade and end up in the undercity. Here the PSI cadet Ekerson, is drawn to a troggy encampment and with the help of the other cadets, they save an injured Judge Anderson. Seems like Ekerson wasn't the only one being drawn to Anderson, Judge Dredd was also arrived on the scene creating a dream team!

From here the story tempo changes pace. I feel sad that the story was so rushed in the end. Pretty much in one issue, Judge Dredd rids the dangerous sisters and leads the charge to capture the Dark Judges. Fear is the first, captured rather simply with bingo material, then Fire gets his body destroyed before having his spirit sucked into an airlock, Mortis's body is destroyed and Anderson traps him and finally Death fees into the undercity and is lost in the confusion. This only leaves us with one loose end - Kraken. Finally freed from Death's grip Kraken knows he has failed, facing off against Dredd he apologizes to his clone brother before Dredd executes him. This had so much more of an effect on me as a child, now as an adult, I am left a little disappointed by the rushed ending. I really wish it went on for another 10 issues and gave us a fuller and more complete story. Ultimately a great read, just could have been better - 4 out of 5 Clone Dredds.

Miniature Monday // Strontium Dogs - Johnny Alpha

Warlord Games 2019 Johnny Alpha

Welcome to a Strontium Dogs post, following on from the Gronk and Brute Mosely painted figures comes Johnny Alpha, the leading hero of the Strontium Dogs. Now as I have admitted a few times I have let to start reading the comics or play a game yet (Warlord has solo rules which I plan to cover soon). I personally only know Johnny Alpha through a couple of audiobooks and from the Judge Dredd Verse so my info is limited.

With that being the case I have lifted some info off an earlier post I shared when I painted a 1980's version of him (LINK), it is rather basic as I wish to delve deeper into the game and comics and reveal more as we actually learn it, rather than suffer from spoilers. Enjoy.

Guide to Alpha's Gear
Alpha and Dredd Team-Up.
Games Workshop 1980's Johnny Alpha


Known Background

The most famous and respected of the Strontium Dogs is Johnny Alpha, whose mutant eyes allow him to see through walls and read minds. He is responsible for such legendary achievements as destroying the Wolrog homeworld, leading the mutant uprising on Earth, and bringing Adolf Hitler to the future to face trial. His legendary career and his assistance to mutants in trouble - such as donating a large sum of money to the Milton Keynes ghetto - has made him an icon to Earth's mutants. He is a highly skilled and dangerous fighter, a highly dogged bounty hunter, never giving up in the pursuit of his quarry.

He is the son of Nelson Bunker Kreelman, a bigoted politician who drafted the anti-mutant laws and gained power on the back of bigotry. Despised, abused and hidden away by his father, Johnny escaped at a young age and joined the Mutant Army, becoming one of its key leaders by age 17 and playing a major part in the mutant uprising of 2167. He never revealed the identity of his father, changing his name from Kreelman to Alpha.

Weapons/Abilities

Like all Search/Destroy agents, Alpha is armed with highly advanced technology including a variable-cartridge blaster, electrified brass knuckles, a short-range teleporter, a "time drogue" that can briefly "rewind" the last few minutes of time, and "time bombs" which can transport somebody minutes or hours forwards or backwards in time (by which time the planet has moved along in its orbit so that the victim reappears in empty space).

Over the years, Johnny Alpha's white, incandescent eyes have provided him with several mutant abilities. Most frequently, the high-level alpha radiation emitted from his eyes allows Johnny to see through walls and other solid objects, or to read people's minds. He has also used his piercing stare to inflict severe headaches on his opponents, guide small objects remotely with a kind of limited telekinesis, or to "suggest" illusions or hallucinations (e.g., while fighting the Necromagus, Sabbat, Johnny made Sabbat believe the Grim Reaper was behind him.).

For a second class citizen and scum of the universe title he has a lot of cool gadgets, I am excited to get some more models painted so we can start running some games. Hopefully, soon I will also find some time to set aside to read a comic and we can start a true dive into Strontium Dogs.

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Audio Review 17 // Valdor: Birth of the Imperium by Chris Wraight


Who would have thought a Lockdown would help so much with my listening time? Well, here we are Ontario (Canada) is in a stay at home scenario. For myself not much has changed, I am still heading out to work every day as I have a hands-on role at the brewery. But, with less staff, I am able to enjoy my audible books more with fewer interruptions.

This week I sat and delved into the Valdor audible book by Black Library. Here is the official write up. 

Explore the history of one of the most well-known heroes of the Imperium in this awesome new novel from Chris Wraight. 

Constantin Valdor. It is a name that brings forth images of heroism, honour and peerless duty. For it is he who commands the will of the Legio Custodes that most esteemed and dedicated cadre of elite warriors. He is the Emperor’s sword, His shield, His banner and he knows no equal. Clad in shining auramite, his fist clenched around the haft of his Guardian Spear, he is the bulwark against all enemies of the throne, within or without.

Nearing the end of the wars of Unity, Valdor’s courage and purpose are put to the test as never before. The petty warlords and tyrants of Old Earth have been all but vanquished, and the Emperor’s armies are triumphant. What now for the nascent Imperium and what fate its forgotten soldiers, its Thunder Warriors and armies of Unity? A new force is rising, one which shall eclipse all others and open the way to the stars. But change on Terra is seldom bloodless and for progress to be ensured darker deeds are necessary.

Review

I am left a little disappointed, I was expecting a Valdor heavy story. This is not that. Luckily though this is a great book of lore for an unknown period of time - the ending of the Unification Era and Terra as a whole. 

The story is told through the eyes of a rather large supporting cast of throw away characters. Though they are interesting, we can't help but know they are just chaff to support the story progression and is hard to connect with them in such a short story. Also, the low page count of Valdor's perspective of the story is a bit of a letdown. It's called Valdor, I want Valdor!

Moving past these flaws the highlights in the story are the Thunder-Warriors, the explanation of why they existed, how they were flawed and why they had to be removed from history. It also shows the birth of the Space Marines and that even Valdor is unimpressed by them. We also get to experience the building of the Emperor's Palace and some of the Primarch program, which makes up for the faults of the novel.

If this had been called Birth of the Imperium: End of Unification, I would be giving it a 4 or maybe a 5 out of 5. Instead, I'm left a little disappointed so have to give it a 3.5 of 5. As always drop me a comment, or sign up for email notifications of posts. Using any of these links provided also helps to support my blogging adventures. Cheers!

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Valdor: Birth of the Imperium by Chris Wraight

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Book Review 113 // A Common Ground by Mike Brooks


Can't believe how quickly I burning through these Necro short stories. I am really going to miss them. Today's read is A Common Ground by Mike Brooks. Here is the write up of the story:

In the Underhive of Necromunda, people fight for many reasons… Goliath ganger Jaxx may be a stimm-fuelled pit fighter, but there are all manner of reasons why he steps into the ring. When a mysterious woman offers Jaxx a chance at glory, as well as revenge against his conniving fight master, he must decide whether it's worth the price… his life.

A great short, here we have a story all about fighting, violence and the glory it can bring you. Jaxx is a brute, jacked up on Stimms, looking for his next fight. But he isn't all bad as the funds he is raising he gives to his closest relatives and surprising background for a Goliath. The short story manages to squeeze in a lot of character info and we are treated to some well thought out characters, including different hive houses and even a Noble House visiting the slums. Overall this tale offers a rare behind the curtain view of the hive and how people survive, or in most cases don't. There is plenty of violence throughout but a strange sense of sacrifice and trust that was unexpected. One of the strongest stories in this series so far, well worth the read.

I would love to read your thoughts on the novel if you have read it? Do you prefer love stories and bonds of kinship or do you want blood and guts with full-on gang warfare, when it comes to Necromunda?  Let me know in the comments and if you wish to support the blog hit follow or use one of the following links:

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Beer Review 124 // Bellwoods Donkey Venom

Sometimes a beer name stands out, other times it is the design. Well with Donkey Venom, it was both. The name seems childishly comically but when combined with a donkey head snake, I knew I had to buy it. Produced in the heart of Toronto, Canada by Bellwoods. Donkey Venom is a barrel-aged Dark Sour and comes in at 8.5%. From the commercial description it sounds like a lot of dark malts, fruits and brett are combined with this recipe to create something unique.

It pours like a lively porter, dark, dark brown body with a lively mocha coloured head. It looks delicious in the glass and very tempting. The aroma is similar to a stout, with coffee, chocolate leading the way, along with a burnt note (not very good at describing that). The taste is definitely tart. There is a sweetness running through the beer similar to caramel, then chocolate malts, a dark fruit flavours like cherries. A pretty delicious brew across the board.

Let me know if you have had this brew and drop me a comment below.

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Comic Review 118 // Predator Omnibus Volume One


Time to dip the toes into the world of Predators. This time rather than trying to force my way through all the Dark Horse comics, I will be alternating between Dredd and predator for the next few reviews, so wish me luck.

To start off the Predator season we will kick off with 400 plus page, omnibus volume one.

Concrete Jungle - The summer has hit New York City. As sunspots affect tv reception, crime rates start to soar. NYPD Rasche and Shafer (brother of Dutch Shafer aka Arnie in Predator) are on the scene of a brutal murder but as Shaefer investigates he discovers the killers are linked to his brother's disappearance. Soon we are knee-deep in Predators and Government Officials. A good opening to the book, the artwork seemed very 90's.

Cold War - The story jumps from the hot city to the cold Siberian wastes. A Russian team guarding an oil field is torn apart by a predator troupe, leaving Lt. Ligachev as the sole survivor. After a debriefing, Ligachev is sent back to discover who the killers truly are. Back in the states the Military have noticed the activity and are creating a team to go hunting, but first, they have to get Schaefer onboard. Now the two opposing forces have to face an unsteady alliance if they are to survive the Predators. Another solid story, a good start to the omnibus.

Dark River - Looks like it is time for round three of the Schaefer adventures. He managed to survive New York and Siberia, now he is once again chasing Predators but this in South America. It seems like the predator he beat in Concrete Jungle didn't die and now Schaefer has to correct his wrongs. Overall an okay story, I am a bit bored with the NYPD Schaefer stories now, but I am rather intrigued by the follow-up story of Dutch, will we ever find out what happened?

Rite of Passage - Straight up this was an exciting story as it had no writing, it was silent, no written words. It follows a plains hunter, who whilst hunting a wild cat returns to find his village destroyed. Tracking down the cause the hunter comes face to face with a Predator. Following an intense fight off the hunter wins and claims the Predator skull as a trophy. A great story really enjoyed this one.

The Pride at Nghasa - We seem to be on a theme. Once again we are in the plains but this time the Predator is hunting some Western hunters. The story was a good as the previous and a bit far-fetched, especially when all the wildlife came to attack the predator. A pretty average tale.

The Bloody Sands of Time - A nice attempt at providing background info to previous Predator visits. Following a mysterious tip-off an investigator discovers a diary from a French trooper, the logs take place  during World War One, and describes the interactions between the forces and a ghost (aka Predator). A fun story with the classic plot twist at the end. Rather enjoyable.

Blood Feud - The final tale in the ominbus. Set within the crowded streets of Tokyo, we meet a blind scientist by the name of Juta, who is working on an infra-red implant to assist with his slight. Juta is far from being a defenceless man, he has trained and honed his other skills to aid him. But following the discovery of his murdered apprentices, Juta starts having visions of a feudal time, when he believes in a past life he had slighted the predators and now they are back to event the score. Another fun story.

A great start to this series. All the stories are pretty solid and the main issue I had was the fact that the Schaefer tale went on a bit too long. I'm excited to see if the stories can stay this strong for the whole series or if like Aliens it will start to suffer from Quanity over Quality.

Have you read these? How is the rest of the series? Let me know by dropping me a comment below. Thanks for reading and continuing to support the blog.

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Aeldari Craftworlds // Alaitoc

The new Craftworld project is underway! I will attempt to paint a model to represent each Aeldari craftworld (where possible). I will also try to capture key details about each sect, using online sources and hopefully through doing this expand my own Aeldari knowledge a bit more.

Enjoy!

ALAITOC

Alaitoc - Unknown meaning

Location - Ultima Segmentum

Colours - Blue and Yellow

Favoured Units - Rangers, Pathfinders

Rune Meaning - The Doom of Eldanesh: Eldanesh was an Eldar hero who was slain by the jealous war god Khaine. The symbol of Alaitoc depicts the sword of Khaine bisecting the Red Moon, the sign of Eldanesh. The Red Moon is an ill-omen for most Eldar and the Alaitoc use it to remind them of what happens if mortals offend the gods.

Alaitoc is a major Asuryani craftworld, known for having spread its influence further afield than any other Craftworld. Their agents spread across the galaxy acting as its eyes and ears.

On the battlefield its forces favour stealth and misdirection over brute force, killing silently and with guile wherever they can.

The world-rune of Alaitoc depicts the sword of Khaine bisecting the Red Moon; the sign of the House of Eldanesh, borne in grim memory of the act that brought about the War in Heaven in Aeldari Mythology. The Red Moon is an ill omen for the Aeldari even now, used as a reminder of the fate of mortals who offend the gods.

Alaitoc and its forces are associated with the colours blue and yellow (blue primary and yellow secondary). The Craftworld is known to be currently located in the Ultima Segmentum that was once the heart of the ancient Aeldari Empire.

Notable Alaitoc Aeldari

Alladrios Kulcassian - A Farseer of Alaitoc, Alladrios had great fear and hatred for the Officio Assassinorum's Culexus Temple. He coordinated a centuries-long effort to locate and destroy this temple. Through unknown means, he discovered the location of this elusive temple and despatched the Legacy of Eldanesh, a Shadow-class Cruiser. However, using his precognitive powers to see the skeins of the future, he discovered to his utter amazement that the temple's destruction would lead to the annihilation of Alaitoc. Choosing the lesser of two evils, he called off the attack and recalled the cruiser to return home.

Arhathain - A notable Autarch of Alaitoc, he formerly studied in the Dark Reapers, Dire Avengers and Howling Banshees Aspect Warriors shrines. As an Autarch, he would go on to command Aeldari strike forces against the Orks on the Exodite world of Eileniliesh and in the eradication of humans from an unnamed world which the craftworld's Farseers predicted would one day bring the threat of Chaos to Alaitoc. Arhathain would later lead the forces of Alaitoc in the defence of their craftworld when it was invaded by the military forces of the Imperium.

Eldorath Starbane - A notable Farseer of Alaitoc who led a small group of Rangers to aid the beleaguered Chapter Master Pedro Kantor of the Crimson Fists Chapter against a large force of Orks -- remnants of WAAAGH! Snagrod -- at the Battle of Traitor's Gorge on Rynn's World. He would later lead the valiant defence of Carnac from a large force of Necrons, led by Trazyn the Infinite, though in the end, the slumbering tomb complex beneath Carnac awoke, forcing the Aeldari forces to withdraw from the planet.

Illic Nightspear - Illic Nightspear is an Aeldari Ranger of Craftworld Alaitoc and has wandered the Path of the Outcast for thousands of years, striding the skeins of fate and seeking out the unknown paths that span the galaxy. He is known to different Ranger bands by many different titles; the Sentinel of the Stars, the Wayforger, and the Shield of Alaitoc. To Illic, one name is as good as another. Such is Nightspear's knowledge of the Webway that it is said by the Aeldari that he can arrive unheralded upon any planet, stepping through its portals and out across the galaxy with the ease of a man drawing breath. Whilst this is undoubtedly an exaggeration, Illic clearly knows more of the hidden paths than any other living being save the Harlequins themselves. Indeed, some say that he knows too much.

Kayleth - Kayleth is an Aeldari Autarch of Craftworld Alaitoc. A superb, yet pragmatic warrior, Kayleth is a master tactician, having spent many centuries mastering all aspects of warfare. Her main focus in battle is on victory and how best to achieve it for her people. She led a strike force of Aeldari to Typhon Primaris in order to prevent the realization of an ancient prophecy that implied the imminent destruction of this world.

Fialla-Thandiriel - Fialla-Thandiriel is an ancient but potent Wraithseer -- a Warlock in life -- whose mortal spirit now resides within the Wraithbone matrix of a Wraithlord. Rare and precious beyond compare, the Wraithseers are to the Aeldari's spirit host what a Warlock is to its Aspect Warriors and Guardians -- a war-leader. As such they are precious indeed, and each loss is keenly felt and rarely can they be risked upon the battlefield. It was while searching the Webway, and the worlds that lie beyond it, for the missing Wraithseer Fialla-Thandiriel that Alaitoc's Rangers discovered the portal that led them to the lost craftworld of Mymeara.

Personal Character.

Alaiteir: Alaiteir is a newly raised Farseer on Craftworld Alaitoc. A headstrong, aggressive farseer and untested in the skeins of fate compared to the rest of the ruling council. Alaiteir and his household guard are at the forefront in most engagements and it was due to this behaviour that Alaiteir had to be saved from a Genestealer infested world. Unlucky for Alaitoc he was saved by the actions of Silar Dathelith of Iyanden. Since then the council of Alaitoc has questioned Alaiteir's motives, as he is now seen constantly in the company of Iyanden crews and corsairs at the harbour gates and mysteriously disappears for cycles before returning with injured brethren. It would seem this bright Farseer is now a pawn of Iyanden.



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Audio Review 16 // Eisenhorn - Xeno By Dan Abnett

Feels nice to be listening to some Audiobooks once again. I feel this is something I need to start getting back into, so hopefully doing the odd blog post will help. If you have any recommendations for podcasts or audiobooks please do drop me a comment and let me know. This time we delve into the realms of Dan Abnett and his Eisenhorn series. A beloved character by many (including myself), I first read this novel when it came out. I have been meaning to re-read for so long but it deeps eluding my reading list but no more! After picking up the audible app I knew I had to pick a winner and what better than this.

Xenos - Book 1 in the Eisenhorn series

THE STORY

The Inquisition moves amongst mankind like an avenging shadow, striking down the enemies of humanity with uncompromising ruthlessness. When he finally corners an old foe, Inquisitor Gregor Eisenhorn is drawn into a sinister conspiracy. As events unfold and he gathers allies - and enemies - Eisenhorn faces a vast interstellar cabal and the dark power of daemons, all racing to recover an arcane text of abominable power: an ancient tome known as the Necroteuch.

Written by Dan Abnett

Audiobook running time 9 hours and 56 minutes. Narrated by Toby Longworth

Review

Best 10 hours of my life. I mainly enjoyed this reading whilst walking to and from work. Before we delve into the story aspect, I just want to be clear and state how much I enjoy a Toby Longworth read story. Anyone who has heard one of his audiobooks will attest to how good he is absorbing you into the tale. Very relaxing, very entertaining.

The book/story is amazing. What we have here in the first title in a series, is a well planned and thought-out galaxy-spanning web of intrigue. We start off on a hell hole of an ice-world experiencing first hand Eisenhorn and his team in action (a strong cast of characters), there is blood, gore, death aplenty. Pure 40k at it's best. What seems like a small localized case starts growing and developing into a more sinister plot. We get to travel worlds on a creepy rogue trader vessel, discover plots to undermine governments using military forces, religious power bases, forbidden lore and Xeno tech. A lot of info is thrown at the listener at a pace that keeps your attention without feeling rushed or overwhelmed, some knowledge of 40K is helpful but not needed. The descriptive use of first-person retelling is a great way to get you into the story as you do feel like you are in someone's memories rather than watching from afar. Got to admit I am hooked.

It was a completely enjoyable listen, made better by Toby Longworth and has me eyeing up the next in the series. As always drop me a comment, or sign up for email notifications of posts. Using any of these links provided also helps to support my blogging adventures. Cheers!

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Xenos by Dan Abnett

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Book Review 112 // Burned by Darius Hinks

Look at us in 2021. New year, fresh starts and a strong start to the book reading. Book eight of my Necromunda short stories and this time the book is titled Burned by Darius Hinks.

The story follows a trio of Goliaths who in the past discovered a very important relic; knowing the heat would be on them they broke the relic into three pieces and went their separate ways. Unfortunately, one of the trios fell into a furnace never be seen again and the other two drifted apart. Speed forward to the present timeline and it turns out the dead Goliath has returned and it is time to reunite the relic.

I enjoyed the 19-page adventure. We discover the relic, is in fact, a set of Dark Angels wings. I also enjoyed the fact that one Goliath grew tired of his third and sold out to the Cawdors and I enjoyed a story arc that has been overused and is very obvious from the get-go. But that is the joy of a short story, it is short. Read it, enjoy it and then move on. Ultimately just a fun quirky adventure. A great 3.5 out of 5.

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Beer Review 123 // God's Flesh by Blood Brothers

Well, here we are, it's 2021 and a fresh new year. We are going to start the year strong with a beautiful Blood Brothers beer.

God's Flesh is a barrel-aged North East India Pale Ale, sitting at a boozy 8%. It was dry-hopped with Simcoe, Amarillo, Wai-iti and Motueka. I'm excited to pour, I personally find Brett beers a hit and a miss, so I am interested to see where this lands.

Straight up the pour. A bright and misty orange body, which is topped by a creamy head that thins down quite quickly. A big fruity aroma coming off this beer, think grapefruit and tropical stonefruits. The first sip is enjoyable bringing to mind pineapples, grapefruit zest, that finishes slightly bitter. The brett is present but in no real forceful way.

An enjoyable enough beer, but it wasn't really a standout brew. The flavours though initially bold, fade rather quickly and you are left with an okay beer. Not much else to say. Have you had one? Let me know in the comments below.

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Beer Stein to enjoy your beer all day: Stanley

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Beer Review 125 // Raspberry Universe - Saison by Great Lakes Brewery.

Beer glorious beer. I do enjoy a beer, and it is with this in mind, that for 2021, I am slowing down my drinking. Moving forwards, I am only...