Book Review 132 // Vulkan Lives (Horus Heresy 26) by Nick Kyme


Let's see... Nightlords...Check. Salamanders...Check. Word Bearers... Check. John Gramaticus...Check. Vulkan...Check.

Seems like this title has it all, can it live up to the hype?

Vulkan Lives by Nick Kyme

Horus Heresy #26

416 Pages

The latest title in Black Library's bestselling series, the Horus Heresy. In the wake of the Drop Site Massacre at Isstvan V, the survivors of the Salamanders Legion searched long and hard for their fallen Primarch, but to no avail. Little did they know that while Vulkan might have wished himself dead, he lives still. As the war continues without him, all eyes turn to Ultramar and Guilliman’s new empire there, and Vulkan’s sons are drawn into an insidious plot to end the Heresy by the most underhand means imaginable.

Right, let's get the awkwardness out the way first. This was a middle-of-the-road story, which could possibly have been written as two separate short stories. One with Vulkan and the Nightlords and then another with John Grammaticus and the Word Bearers. Instead, we get the two tales smashed together, causing them to be longer than needed, and a real feeling of not caring by the end.

It was nice to finally have the Salamander's Primarch enter the story, alongside the Night Lords Primarch Curze. But as mention their section of the book could have been a novella, which would have been much more enjoyable for me as a reader. The real highlight of the book though was John Grammaticus and his mission to recover a fabled spear. Searching for a relic which he believes will save Vulkan. Shortly after finding the spear, John stumbles into the sightlines of a Word Bearer Kill team who seem to be hunting for him. As all seems lost he is rescued by Istvaan Survivors and soon is left wondering if he is rescued or just another prisoner. Once again if this had been 200 pages it would have been great, instead, we are left hopping back and forth, losing track of characters, with painfully long stretches of zero action and way too many flashbacks.

I would love to say "I really enjoyed this 4 stars", but instead I am left feeling a meh 2.5 stars. Doesn't need to be in the story arc at all as I feel it didn't move the story forward, it just treads water. Disappointing.


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