Book Review 196 // City of Lifestone by Tom Huddleston


As regular readers will know, I have enjoyed the Warhammer Adventure series. They are aimed at a younger audience, but if you are looking for a light, quick-to-finish read, I would say try it and see if you like it. While searching the local library, I discovered this one tucked away on the shelf and due I had to try it. Could this be the first book to get me to like AOS?

Title: City of Lifestone (Realm Quest #1)

Author: Tom Huddleston

Buy for Kindle off Amazon

Fluff: Far from home and free from slavery, Kiri embarks on an epic adventure across the Mortal Realms, accompanied by a group of special friends. But dark forces gather to stop them…

READ IT BECAUSE

It's a brand-new and exciting way to experience the Age of Sigmar – and it's designed to be the perfect starting point for younger readers. Read it with your children to introduce them to your favourite universe!

THE STORY

Raised as a slave in the Darkoath camps of Aqshy, Kiri dreams of a better life. Of a city of wonders, the place of her birth… Lifestone! She despairs of ever reaching it until a fateful day arrives when her barbarian captors are attacked by Sigmar's noblest warriors, the Stormcast Eternals. Seizing her chance, Kiri flees through a mysterious realmgate that takes her far from the fiery lands of Aqshy. She arrives in the realm of Ghyran and finds the city of Lifestone. But a curse lies on this place, withering its noble spirit. Her path leads her to a special group of children who, like her, are realm-marked – the prophecised saviours of Lifestone. There's Thanis, the fighter; Alish, the inventor; Kaspar; the sneak and Elio, the healer. But dark forces are allying against the children and will do anything to stop them achieving their destiny.

Format: Paperback, 208 pages

Review

The opening story follows Kiri, whose story beings with her being liberated by the Stormcast Eternals as they wage war against the Darkoath Chaos Warbands. Remembering a tale her mother had told her, she seeks out the City of Lifestone in hopes of a peaceful life. However, like many locations in the realms, the city has seen better days, and soon Kiri is swept up in a new adventure.

Kiri herself is a significant lead, a strong-willed, natural leader with a real stubborn streak. I can see how this persona will work well with young readers. We then get slowly introduced to more kids like Alish, the inventor; Thanis, the fighter; Kaspar, a sneaky thief and Elio, the healer (which feels like a D&D group). This rage tag grouping is, of course, led by a mysterious older character seeking out children with special marks; the reason is unknown and, if not a little creepy. Is he a good guy?

If this wasn't enough plot hook for you, we get everyone's favourite villain, the Skaven, popping up. They, too, seem to be interested in the city, and soon the children are neck-deep in trouble. This is a children's book, so many darker topics are avoided or quickly skimmed over. Similar to the 40k version of the book. The ending comes rather promptly, ending on a cliffhanger with the kids heading into the Lair of the Skaven.

Overall an enjoyable afternoon read; the illustrations were excellent, the encyclopedia section is always fun to read, and I can see this being popular with a younger audience. Definitely now seeking out book two.

Have you read it? Let me know in the comments. It is making me want to paint a Skaven or two, ha.

Audio Review 88 // Wolf Mother by Graham McNeill

The final book in my run of short Audio Dramas from the War Without End book! Wolf Mother by Graham McNeill promises to be a show stopper!

Title: Wolf Mother (The Horus Heresy #Short Story)

Author: Graham McNeill

Buy Now on Amazon: Purchase here

Fluff: Aboard the Molech’s Enlightenment, amongst the countless civilian refugees that fled the Warmaster’s invasion, a serpent makes its nest. The Chaos cult that brought House Devine to its knees lives on, preying upon the weak and the helpless, and it falls to Alivia Sureka to root out the evil that hides in plain sight. Luckily for her, she has an ally who is more than familiar with such tactics – the lone wolf Knight Errant, Severian.

This is a tense rescue mission. The immortal Alivia Sureka teams up with the Space Marine Severian to fight a wicked Serpent God cult. They’re the perfect team, mixing superb hunting prowess with ferocious fighting. And Sureka’s actions to save her daughter drive the moral home - don’t step between a wolf and her cub.

Review

A follow-up story to the Vengeful Spirit title and one I much appreciated. In the Vengeful Spirit title, we had a lot of characters woven into the title to finish off their tales, but for some characters, we didn't get that. Finally, at least Alivia Sureka and Severian's tale finished.

We join Alivia Sureka as she attempts to rescue her adopted daughter from the grip of Molech's Serpent Cult. With few options open to her, she is forced to join up with a Knight Errant - Severian. As the duo fight their way through cultists, they discover they are actually attempting to summon a daemon that, if raised, would wreak havoc on the refugee ship.

The action was great, and the storytelling was engaging and made for a beautiful ending to this set of shorts. I believe Pharos is next, and then another round of short stories. It seems like I am over the hill with this series and now racing to the end (still 20+ books to go if my math is right). Then finally I can hit the siege of Terra books. Wow what a ride so far.

Blood Bowl 2 Elven Union vs Vampire (Youtube)


Game three with the Elven Union in my first-ever Blood Bowl 2 league. After another hard-fought draw against an Orc team, I still seek out that elusive first win. Will I be able to sneak a win past this Vampire team, or am I "biting" off more than I chew?

For more Blood Bowl action, click here

If you play, reach out; maybe we can have a match together?

Comic Review 203 // Battleworld Red Skull by Joshua Williamson

Needed a quick break from all the Slaine epics, so while searching a thrift store, I discovered this titled. I am no Marvel expert and have no idea what Battleworld is, but I know Red Skull, so let us see how this goes.

Title: Red Skull collects #1-3 Red Skull (2015)

Writer: Joshua Williamson

Illustrator: Luca Pizzari

Fluff: One of the vilest villains of the Marvel Universe gets his very own twisted Secret Wars series! Red Skull should be dead but his legend grows, so a team that includes Winter Soldier, Magneto, Electro and Lady Deathstrike are sent on a dangerous odyssey to the Deadlands to prove it...but no one ever comes back alive from the Deadlands! Forced to overcome zombies, Ultron drones and the Annihilation Wave, the rag-tag team of villains will find that they may have bitten off more than they can chew.

Format: 112 pages, Paperback

Buy here for kindle via Amazon

First published: November 24, 2015 

Review

As previously mentioned, I have zero ideas about what is going on. I grabbed it on a whim and apologized for all the wrong thoughts and info in advance.

We seem to be in a timeline where the multiverse is ruined/broken/gone wrong. The villain, Doom, has risen to control this world and seems to be treated like a God. Possibly in an earlier comic, the Red Skull attempted an insurrection and failed. His punishment was being banished over a wall called the shield to die in the zombie/monster-infested wastelands (why he wasn't executed is unknown). Unfortunately for Doom, this did not kill off the growing resistance, and pocket groups are still forming to claim the Red Skull's lives. Needing to crush this ever-increasing resistance, Doom tasks a group of Super Villians to track down the Red Skull and bring him back dead or alive.

The opening pages are pretty cool as we get introduced to some fantastic villains, Electro, Magneto (in a cool white outfit), Jack O'Lantern, Lady Deathstroke, Moonstone and The Winter Soldier. We learn they have all transgressed Doom, and this is their one chance at forgiveness and leading the pack is Crossbones. So far, so good, then they enter the wastelands. Here they discover the zombie horde and proceed to all be killed apart from Magneto, who is saved by the Red Skull.

At this point, the story turns for the worst. It was predictable with its double-crossing and ending. The cameos seemed to lack lustre at best, and though the story was nothing special, it could and should have been completed with fewer pages. Ultimately it is not the worst comic I've read, but it definitely fell into the meh section.

What I actually enjoyed more was the filler stories after the main title. Classic garishly coloured Red Skull/Captain America/Magneto story brought me back to the early comics I read as a child from second-hand stores. Then the weirdly created alt-timeline story of the Red Skull as a bell-hop in a Captain America-dominated world, with an ending I didn't understand at all.

Fans may love it; I just found it all a bit meh. Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

Alien Isolation part 18 // Don't do it!



Don't do it! Alien Isolation Walkthrough Part 18. Watch more gameplay here: Adventures with Peps YouTube.

I am getting seriously creeped out by these Working Joes. Can I just get back to the xenomorph? In this episode, we finally catch up to Samual, just in time for him to be killed off. Farewell, you strange corporate pawn!

Seriously appreciate all the support of late. Thank you for taking the time to become a subscriber.

Book Review 195// First & Only (Gaunt's Ghosts #1) by Dan Abnett


Finally, I am getting around to some more Dan Abnett and the Gaunt Ghosts. I have left this way too long. Which is truly a shame, and I plan on fixing this asap. So shut the feth up and get in it!

Title: First and Only
Author: Dan Abnett

Fluff:
In the Chaos-infested Sabbat system, Imperial Commissar Gaunt must lead his men through as much in-fighting amongst rival regiments as against the forces of Chaos.

For a thousand years, the Sabbat Worlds have been lost to the Imperium, claimed by the dread powers of Chaos. Now, a mighty crusade seeks to return the sector to Imperial rule. And at the forefront of that crusade are Colonel-Commissar Ibram Gaunt and the Tanith First and Only – better known as Gaunt’s Ghosts. Trapped in the grinding trench warfare of Fortis Binary, the Ghosts find themselves drawn into a conspiracy to assassinate the crusade’s leader, Warmaster Macaroth. With enemies all around them and no one to trust, Gaunt and his men must find a way to save the Warmaster and prevent the Sabbat Worlds Crusade from falling into anarchy – even if it means waging war on their supposed allies.

Publisher: Black Library


Format owned: 320 pages Hardback Omnibus.

Review

Here we begin the re-read of the entire Gaunts Ghosts series. Returning to the first title is strange, as I was sure I remembered it well. I didn't and rereading it opened my eyes to so much I had missed.

First and Only came out hot on the heels of the stories from Inferno! Magazine. Mainly set on the Forge World of Fortis Binary, the men of Tanith face off against a chaotic, corrupted planet. The action is brutal throughout, and it soon becomes apparent that there is more to fear from their allies than the enemy.

Weirdly, this is book one, as Ghostmaker does a better job of introducing the characters. But I assume the nature of the short story reads was something Black Library wasn't willing to risk the series opener on. Luckily all the main characters are here, and all are starting to shine in this novel. We also get an obvious direction on how the stories will progress later. It is a classic underdog tale, and from book one, you are rooting for the Tanith, and I am already excited for the next title. Great start to a series that has brought me so much joy over the years.

As always, thanks for reading!

Audio Review 87 // Twisted by Guy Haley


Continuing this run of Horus Heresy. I have a goal to finish the entire series, and I can almost see the finish line. It's so close.

Title: Twisted
Author: Guy Haley
Fluff:
Since he was crippled by rebel treachery on Sixty-Three Nineteen, Maloghurst ‘the Twisted’ has continued to serve Warmaster Horus as his closest aide and confidant. His loyalty has remained constant, but the XVI Legion has changed – rivalry and personal ambition run rife, and although Horus’s authority is supreme, his equerry’s is certainly not. When a daemonic plot to infest the Vengeful Spirit comes to light, Maloghurst reluctantly turns to the few allies he has left: the mysterious Davinites.

You can’t beat a good mystery, and Twisted delivers one with plenty of suspense and cunning. Maloghurst, the equerry to the Warmaster, is searching out the culprits who have brought aboard vile spirits. His resolve to see things to the climatic end is shocking.

Buy via Amazon and support the Blog.

Review

A very surprising short tale. Maloghurst the Twisted has been pretty quiet since appearing early in the series. But now he is back, and we get to join him as he fights to prove his worth and hang on to his role in a rapidly changing Legion.

This happens as a Neverborn (daemon) stalks him through the Vengeful Spirit, whispering false hopes and promises. All Maloghurst has to do is succumb to the joining. This is a great follow-up to the Vengeful Spirit novel by Graham McNeill. And it also seems to make The Twisted role the dark mirror image of the Sigillite. It is strange this character is not featured more in the stories. Enjoyable tale but I ultimately need more!!

Beer Review 192 // Galactic Dark Noir by Big Drop


Well, it had to happen at some point, another non-alcoholic beer review. We are revisiting Big Drop Brewing with their Milk Stout option. Here are the details:

Beer Name: Galactic Dark Noir.
Brewery: Big Drop Brewing Co. England (but brewed in Ontario somewhere).
Style: Non-Alcholic Stout.
ABV: 0.4%

Fluff: Alcohol-free Stout. Forget the notion this is a beer style that has had its day. Instead, think of it as honeycomb covered in chocolate, because that’s exactly what it tastes like: rich, unctuous and an absolutely decadent treat of a beer.

Review

Pours very darkly with a lively, bubble heavy mocha head. This head then rapidly fizzes away. It was a race to get the picture. It ultimately flew away into nothingness, leaving a flat looking brew. If I didn't know better I would assume it was a strong looking ice coffee.

Aroma also fell flat for me, coco powder, coffee and some sort of dark fruit. This smells sweet, nothing bad, but nothing exciting either. First sip is rather sweet, sugary dark malts, earthiness soon works it's way in whilst it finishes ash tray like. It is not that enjoyable. The fast escaping carbonation also left the body feeling lacklustre. I just don't know about this one. It's not a porter and it seems to watery for a stout...

Ultimately one can was enough and I feel that says it all. I am not willing to dip my hand into the wallet for a second. So a pass for me. Have you tried it? Let me know.

Comic Review 202 // Sláine: The Grail War by Pat Mills


Powering through the Slaine stories at the moment! We have reached book 8, The Grail War, by Pat Mills. Slaine is still travelling through time and has reached the era of the Crusaders! This should be a good one.

Title: Sláine: The Grail War

Author: Pat Mills

Illustrators: Steve Tappin, Nick Percival & Massimo Belardinelli

Fluff: Sláine MacRoth – Celtic warrior and High King of the tribes of the Earth Goddess Danu, continues his journey through time. Sláine arrives in thirteenth-century France, where he comes face to face with Crusader Simon De Montfort, the sworn enemy of the Cathars. While searching for the tortured reincarnation of his lover Niamh, Sláine is compelled to join forces with De Montfort to seek out the Grail Stone. The quest won't be easy, however – Sláine will have to defeat the dark forces of El if he is to stand any chance of saving Niamh's soul!

Collects:

- The Demon Hitchhiker (Prog #1032)

- King of Hearts (Progs #1033–#1039)

- The Grail War (Progs #1040–#1049)

- Secret of the Grail (Progs #1090–#1099)

- The Battle of Clontarf (2000 AD Annual 1985)

Format: Digital 176 pages

Buy on Amazon and support the blog

Review

This title kicks off with King of Hearts, which sees Slaine paired up with William Wallace as he joins the Scots to fight off the English. We get to witness the defeat of Falkirk and William's retreat to his home. Here he communes with the ancient spirits of Scotland as he awaits to battle with the English again. As he prays, Slaine answers the call and becomes William's Champion due to the bonds between Ireland and Scotland. This helps to set up the Stone of Destiny story and introduce the Knights Templars as agents of the Cyth. So evil and brutal that I love it.

The rest of the book is, of course, The Grail War. We finally leave the shores of the British Isles and head into mainland Europe. Slaine has arrived in medieval France and joins forces with Simon De Montfort as he wages war on the Cathars. This is an exciting twist as up till now, Slaine has always fought against the Christian Church, but in a twist of fate, it turns out that Slaine's enteral love, Niamh, has been reincarnated as Simon De Montfort. The story has strange twists and turns as we have dragons and Lovecraft-style demons from space. I found that there was too much going on to remember it all, and I found myself rereading pages to remind myself.

The art, as with nearly all the Slaine books, is stunning, each artist is different, but all add a great depth to the story. They definitely added to the fantasy aspects of the story while still keeping us grounded in the darkness and gore. Pat Mills did an excellent job on the storytelling, but a little less religion/folklore would have helped me out no end. But for fans of Slaine, this is a great read.

As always, I appreciate you reading this far, and I hope you will check out the graphic novel using my link above. Looking for more fun? Head over to my Youtube page for more adventures (CLICK).

Imperium Magazine 1 Battle Report - First Contact


Welcome to another Youtube update (not following well; time to subscribe! Also, it is free). This week we officially kick off the battle report series for Imperium Magazine. I will run through all 80 battle reports from this magazine using only painted models (the challenge is on!).

This series of magazines comes with figures/paint/terrain or a combo of pieces. Inside, you usually get some unit info, lore, building guide, paint guide and finally, a battle report.

Kicking this off is Issue One, First Contact! We are using my freshly painted Executioners Space Marine Lieutenant squaring off against a Royal Warden of the Novokh Dynasty, all set within War Zone Damasus.

Will the Lieutenant be able to stop the Necron from activating a Repair Node? Or will the Royal Warden reactivate the systems that will awaken the warriors of this tomb complex deep under the moon of Megaria? Watch now to find out.

I truly appreciate the people reading these posts and those of you who have jumped to my YouTube channel. Thank you!

Book Review 194 // Fulgrim: The Palatine Phoenix by Joshua Reynolds

The Horus Heresy stories have been going on for so long now that I feel like they are a safety net for me. Not sure what to read but need enjoyment, I turn to Black Library for support. Here is my most recent security blanket.

Title: Fulgrim: The Palatine Phoenix (The Horus Heresy: Primarchs #6)

Author: Joshua Reynolds

Format: Kindle Edition - BUY ON AMAZON

Page Count: 224 pages

Fluff: The sixth title in The Horus Heresy: Primarchs series, focusing on Fulgrim, primarch of the Emperor's Children Legion.

Lord of Chemos and bearer of the Palatine Aquila, Fulgrim, primarch of the Emperor's Children, is determined to take his rightful place in the Great Crusade, whatever the cost. A swordsman without equal, the Phoenician has long studied the art of war and grows impatient to put his skills, and those of his loyal followers, to a true test. Now, accompanied by only seven of his finest warriors, he seeks to bring a rebellious world into compliance by any means necessary. But Fulgrim soon learns that no victory comes without a cost, and the greater the triumph, the greater the price one must pay.

Review

It's hard to believe this title is Josh Reynold's first full-length title in the 30k setting unless I missed something? For this tale, Reynolds takes on the mantle of a Fulgrim story set before the amazing Graham McNeill's title Fulgrim. This is a time of worry for the Emperor's Children as they are still recovering from a genetic defect in their bloodline, which has seen their numbers decline harshly. For this tale, Fulgrim is charged with taking a world and wanting to prove himself to his brothers; he vows to take it with only Seven Warriors!

This title does a fantastic job of showcasing Fulgrims persona and how it starts to leach its way into his sons. Fulgrim's self-entitlement and pride are really well played out throughout the story and ultimately take away from what should be a fantastic achievement. We also get treated to some great characters; with only about nine full characters to keep track of, we explore each in more detail. Comically in a book about Space Marines, the stand-out character had to be Primary Iterator Puke. A civilian character meant to assist with the treaty turns out to be a master of political intrigue and underhanded espionage.

But ultimately, what is the moral of the book? For me, it seemed to showcase the need for perfection and how Fulgrim has become lost on the path. He sees the end result, ie. Perfection, but does not live in the moment. This makes him and legion cold to the moment, which is the flaw Slaanesh needs to sneak in and corrupt them. Seeing them like this and knowing what they become all makes more sense.

A great book, and I highly recommend it. But I would recommend having some background knowledge of the legion to help you along.

Let me know your thoughts! Cheers for reading.



Audio Review 86 // Chirurgeon by Nick Kyme


Excited to dive into another Fabius Bile story. As one of my favourite villains of 40k, it is always enjoyable to experience the 30k "Loyal" version. I'm keen on Reynold's version of him, so I genuinely hope Kyme does him Justice.

Title: Chirurgeon (The Horus Heresy #Short Story)

Author: Nick Kyme

Format: Audible buy here from Amazon

Fluff:

In its earliest days, the III Legion was blighted by a genetic flaw threatening to end the Phoenician's bloodline forever. Fortunately, through tireless effort and the miracle of the primarch's genetic perfection, visionaries like Apothecary Fabius could halt the corruption and restore the Emperor's Children to their former glory. Except, it would seem, that a terrible secret has been kept from the rest of the Legion, and the threat of further degeneration is quite real...

Review

As one of the most infamous members of the traitors, it is easy to forget that Fabius was viewed with much respect in the 30K timeline. At the time of the Crusades, he was one of the most important members of the Emperor's Children Legion. Second only to Fulgrim himself. Without Fabius, the Legion would have fallen to genetic corruption long before the Heresy, which would have seen them joining the forgotten legions. It is funny to think that this noble drive to save his Legion would be twisted into the same purpose that would help the Legion descend deeper into the arms of Chaos.

Nick Kyme does a solid job of making Fabius a fully rounded-out character. We get a closer look at him while he operates on himself to remove the genetic blights plaguing his body. During these moments of pain, we relive some of Fabius' early memories and experience some unique lore for a legion that could have been great. This should be described as a body horror title as, in great detail, we hear the cutting and operation throughout. We also discover that Fabius is more of a Necromancer than a doctor.

Ultimately a great listen and one I wish to revisit again very soon.

Beer Review 191 // Reboot by Beyond the Pale Brewing Company


Damn, the weather in Ottawa is all over the place. The other night was killer hot and humid, so I had to grab a cold can of beer to cool down. By now, you all know I work for BTP, so it should be no surprise that is what ended up in my glass.

Beer Name: Reboot

Style: Fresh Whole-Cone Cascade Hopped Lager

Brewery: Beyond the Pale Brewing Company, Ottawa, Ontario. Canada.

ABV: 4.0%

Fluff: Time to Refresh and Reboot! Reboot Lager is full of Fresh Whole-Cone Cascade Hops, creating a super crisp, lemon citrus hinted brew. This beer is fresh, light, and so easy to drink. The perfect autumnal beer to enjoy while the leaves change colour and prepare for winter.

Review

Lagers are always hard to review; they need to be refreshing and crisp. If they don't achieve that, then they have failed. Well, I can safely say this Reboot hits those points beautifully, then to add to the enjoyment, we get a charming lemon-fresh hint to it. Effortless drinking definitely took away the heat of the evening.

I highly recommend this brew next time they have some. Until then, tell me your go-to brew for a hot night.

Comic review 201 // Slaine: The treasures of Britain by Pat Mills


Hard to believe I am now on book seven in the Slaine series! I really wasn't sure heading into the Slaine stories if I would enjoy them or not. For me, the idea of Slaine was very much like Conan, but as I have read more, I have realized how different they are. Pat Mills is a true treasure of Britain! Now on to the graphic novel.

Title: Slaine: The Treasures Of Britain

Purchase via Amazon

Author: Pat Mills

Illustrator: Dermot Power

Fluff: Slaine Mac Roth - Celtic warrior and High King of the tribes of the Earth Goddess Danu, has been summoned through time to the age of Camelot. King Arthur has fallen in battle, and a curse has caused darkness to fall upon the kingdom. To heal the land, Merlin and Morgaine la Fee need Sláine (accompanied by his unfaithful sidekick Ukko, the Dwarf) to retrieve the lost 'Treasures of Britain' - magical artifacts also being sought out by the Saxon plunderer Hengwulf. These powerful items are defended by the demon-like Cyth, who harvest human misery to revive their masters - the Dark Gods of Cythrawl!

Format: Epub

Other info: First published October 15, 1997

Review

Now, as many kids have been. I was enthralled by knights, castles, Camelot and Arthur. So I was happy to see Slaine getting thrown into the mix. The story takes place after Arthur falls in combat with his son Mordred. The land of Brittania has been covered in darkness, Saxons and Christianity. To save the kingdom, the rivals of Merlin and Morgaine La Fee combine their powers to call on the Great Dragon of Britain to bring forth a hero to recover the 13 treasures of Britain. Said hero is, of course, Slaine and the proper lead Ukko, the Dwarf.

Now, of course, Slaine can't just march in as himself, so he takes on the Green Knight (Gwalchmai) role and will discover new and some old enemies along the way.

This is a fantastic story and, for my personal tastes, actually beats out the Horned God. Set in a theme, I thoroughly enjoy how this perfectly added to the stories and myths. The story is enhanced to another level by the work of Dermot Power, whose action scenes are intense and full of movement while the colour palette matches the story theme perfectly. We also get some humour-filled tales which helped break the epic up. I can't recommend this title enough; it was a joy to read and look at and deserving of more praise than it has received.

I hope you will give it a go and let me know what you think.

Blood Bowl 2 - Elven Union vs Orcs


Game two with the Elven Union in my first-ever league. After a hard-fought draw against an Amazon team, I was out seeking a win. Unfortunately, I was up against Orcs. So wish me luck!

Playing this game gives me the itch to enjoy more Blood Bowl on the tabletop. So the question is which accounts to follow to get more info on the game. Drop me a comment.

More Blood Bowl here: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLenRRbYlk2jw5sumMYpyxuZdrPxzi_MdS

If you play, reach out; maybe we can have a match together?

Blue Yeti Nano: Amazon Link

Sony Alpha ZV-E10: Amazon Link


Book Review 193 // Secrets of the Tau by Cavan Scott

Delving back into the Warped Galaxies title with Secrets of the Tau. So far, the titles have been enjoyable to read through. Obviously aimed at a younger audience, we are still treated to a thrilling read. I am hoping Cavan Scott can continue this trend with the Tau.

Title: Secrets of the Tau (Warped Galaxies #3)

Buy now via Amazon: LINK

Author: Cavan Scott

Fluff: The third book in the Warped Galaxies series. An exciting new series of sci-fi books for middle-grade readers from Black Library. Brave champions and the forces of the Imperium battle alien beasts and mechanical tyrants across the gulf of space.

Journeying to the bustling spaceport of Hinterland after being saved from certain death by a dubious Rogue Trader, Zelia, Talen and Mekki continue their quest to reach the Emperor's Seat. But much here is not what it seems. Alone in a strange place surrounded by aliens, who can they really trust and what are the secrets of the Tau?  

Review

Having been rescued from the clutches of the Genestealers, our young group starts to experience the wider galaxy and where they are within it. It also allows new characters and locations to be explored now we are thoroughly familiar with the main cast. The first new character is the Rogue Trader, who I feel isn't all they seem. Hardly no crew to speak off or with, and the behaviour patterns of an Inquisitor, I think they can't yet be fully trusted.

But with the aid of the Captain, our team made it to the Hinterland, a Space Station located painfully close to the Tau empire and awkwardly too far away from the watchful eyes of the Imperium. This has led to the place becoming the den of the illegal, be it trade, aliens, gambling or drugs. This setting can be well used to start the discussion of Xenophobia with a child and how the Imperium is not the series' goodies. This may be a complicated conversation, but it seems to be an important one to discuss.

As with previous titles, we see the characters clashing as they discover themselves and grow into adults, but we also see bonds strengthening and some real character growth. The Tau in the novel comes across as almost a mobster group which was fun to see. Also very understandable with the amount of High Tech equipment they have. And with a classic explosive ending, we head off into space on to the next adventure, which, based on the title, involves everyone's favourite - ORKS!!

As always, I truly appreciate your reading. If you use the to-buy link, thank you for supporting the blog. Want to help a freeway? Head over to my Youtube and drop me a follow. Cheers!

Audio Review 85 // Imperfect by Nick Kyme

Rolling through the Audio dramas at the moment, I love it. I hope to get the Horus Heresy game one day, but for now, I will live the stories.

Title: Imperfect (The Horus Heresy #Short Story)

Author: Nick Kyme

Fluff:

A simple game of Regicide between Fulgrim and Ferrus Manus is far more than it seems...

Primarch Fulgrim seeks to understand his failure in turning his brother Ferrus Manus to Horus's banner. This story shows the depths to which the lord of the Emperor's Children has fallen and a glimpse into the madness consuming him.

Review

Okay, this was a concise story. Not adding any links to buy for this one. The plot and idea for this tale are impressive and intriguing, but it is just such a short story. We join Fulgrim and Fabius Bile in a sick testing lab, where Fabius has been growing Ferrus Manus clones. The purpose of these clones is to allow Fulgrim to see how and why he failed to turn his brother to the Warmaster side. 

It is a great precursor to the cloning of Horus later on and does a fantastic job of showcasing Fulgrim's arrogance and pride as he can't accept the fact that he failed. This is a great filler piece, but if you don't read it, you aren't missing much.

I love the support and hope you can join me on Youtube soon!

Audio Review 84 // A Safe and Shadowed Place by Guy Haley


This week's Horus Heresy Audio Drama will be good, focusing on the Nightlords. This Legion is amongst my favourites in the series, and I am always disappointed by the lack of full stories on them during this time. At least we seem to get a lot of short tales instead.

Title: A Safe and Shadowed Place

Author: Guy Haley

Buy Via Amazon: Link

Fluff:

Seeking refuge, the remnants of the Night Lords' fleet stumble across Imperium Secundus.

The last time we heard from the Night Lords' fleet, they were scattered and leaderless in the wake of the disastrous Thramas Crusade. Now, a sizeable portion of the Legion is drawn to a mysterious beacon on the far side of the galaxy. Now, The VIII Legion is back in the fight, probably bad news for the loyalists…

Review

Set shortly after the Prince of Crows, the Night Lord legion is shattered into the void, with rival factions within the Legion vying for power. The Legion itself has devolved into nothing more than rival gangs fighting each other for dominance, and only through a show of strength have leaders appeared. In this tale, we follow some survivors at a hidden staging ground in deep space as they attempt to repair their ships. Unknown to them, they are next to Sotha, the base world of the Imperium Secundus beacon, the only way that Ultramar is being held together. And soon, they can strike a disastrous blow.

As I mentioned before, I feel we are missing out on the lack of long-form stories. But this is a very interesting short as we get some insight into the Night Lord Legion and the internal conflicts that have always afflicted them. We also get to see how they act when left alone, and I, for one, never want to experience life on a Night Lords ship.

Overall a great listen by a great author highly recommend it! Check it out.

Comic Review 200 // Slaine Horned God by Pat Mills


Well, we are starting to race through the Slaine series now! I now own 18 out of the 19 titles and have completed six reviews. meaning we are a third of the way through. For many Slaine fans, this is the must-read title so I have high hopes and really hope I am not left disappointed.

Title: Slaine: The Horned God: Kiss His Axe!

Author: Pat Mills

Artist: Simon Bisley 

Fluff: FOR TOO LONG THE PEOPLE OF TIR-NAN-OG HAVE SUFFERED UNDER THE DOMINION OF THE DRUNES; strange druids who have poisoned the land with their magic. Slaine has had enough of their tyranny and, through the Earth Goddess, he learns some shocking truths about the priesthood and his own future. Now Slaine must unite the four kings of Tir-Nan-Og and use their mystical weapons as he and the Sessair tribe prepare for all-out war!

This new edition of one of 2000 AD's most popular stories comes complete with an intro and commentary by Pat Mills (A.B.C. Warriors) and features the stunning art of Simon Bisley (Lobo).

Format: 192 pages, Kindle Edition

Buy via Amazon here: Kindle Edition

Review

As mentioned I am rapidly devouring these Slaine titles and if you want to learn more please feel free to check out the other reviews here.

This is the fourth title in the series following Slaine and his adventures for the Earth Goddess. Having become King of his tribe, Slaine must now unite the other fractured groups and collect the treasures of the Goddess to become High King. But whilst he undergoes these trials his two greatest enemies Balor and Lord Wierd Slough Feg, are raising armies of Drunes and Fomorians to raid the kingdom of the Young.

This is a classic adventure tale, leading up to some big moments. The obvious one is the battles but we also delve into the history of the Earth Goddess and how man has raised male Gods above her in order to control her (which I found interesting), this path of discovery then leads Slaine to become the Horned God which is the 'Husband' of the Goddess. This role he will hold for seven years before sacrificing himself in honour of the Earth. It is also at this time that we discover that Slough Feg was also a Horned God, but instead of sacrificing himself, he corrupted his power to sustain his life, which slowly drove him insane and into the monster that he now is.

The battle scenes are epic and bloody, very deserving of a Slaine title. It turns out that all the fighting has enraged the Earth Goddess and she causes the land to convulse, so as Slaine claims victory over the Drunes and Fomorians he is forced to watch as the land of the young is swallowed by the waves forcing the tribes into what would become Ireland.

Overall an amazing story I can see why many recommend it. It shows Slaine as more than just a thug, a barbarian. It shows his leadership qualities, his ability to unite the tribes and even acts of diplomacy. For once we have rounded out Slaine's character and I like it. The artwork throughout the piece is stunning and I definitely know how to paint up my Fomorians finally. So ultimately a win for me.

If you are interested in the Slaine series you should try out this collection. I feel it will set you on the right path.

As always thanks for reading!

How many working Joes are there?


Alien Isolation Walkthrough Part 17: More Working Joes! To catch up on the series, use this link: Youtube Playlist - Drop me a follow.

The station is full of killer Working Joe's, so where better to go next than a Working Joe's Graveyard and Showroom! I am genuinely more scared of these Androids than the Xenomorph.

As always, thank you all for the love I've been getting. It means the world. I can grow the channel even if you just play it in the background with every bit of help.

Cheers!

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Book Review 192 // Gloomspite by Andy Clark

I am attempting some more Age of Sigmar stories this summer. My reason is that I want to start collecting a small force. I will probably never play, but I want something a little different to paint, and with me dipping my toes into Slaine, I have developed a fantasy urge. I have narrowed that down to a couple of races, one of which is the theme of this book. So let's dive in.

Title: Warhammer Age of Sigmar -Gloomspite

Author: Andy Clark

Publisher: Black Library

Fluff: The Bad Moon looms over the city of Dracothium, and Watch Captain Helena Morthan knows it bodes ill for the town. Can she and grieving warrior Hendrick Saul defeat the plans of the Gloomspite Loonking and save their people?

In the dark corners of the Mortal Realms, the mysterious Gloomspite Gitz go to war, following the trail of their abominable deity. Nowhere is beyond the sight of the Bad Moon, not even those places under Sigmar's protection, like the city of Draconium, sweltering beneath the scalding rain of Aqshy. In this boiling pot of tension, the regent prays to Sigmar for guidance while Captain Helena Morthan puts out fires: blades drawn in the streets, heretical doomsayers preaching the end of days, and insects eating watchmen alive.

When the grieving warrior Hendrick and his warband arrive at the gates with a prophetic warning, Captain Morthan sees a way to save her people. But with Skragrott the Loonking plotting underneath Draconium, and the Bad Moon looming in the sky above, will there be a city left to save?

Buy Now on Amazon

REVIEW

Okay. That was a fun story. I straight up enjoyed this one from start to finish. It was well written, with a creepy nursery rhyme opening every act of the story. This helped set the scene perfectly and raised the creeped-out level by no end as you are left guessing how or what the rhyme is hinting at.

The story's primary focus is based on adventurers for hire, a roving band of characters who wouldn't be out of place in a D & D adventure. Following the death of their leader and his death throw warning, the group heads to Draconium to issue a warning of a dire threat heading towards the city. Beyond saying it involves grots would ruin the surprise, so I will stay quiet on that.

In unsurprising Black Library style, everything starts going wrong. Events start going from bad to worst, and soon the city is in utter chaos. There is fighting in the streets and the palace, and it would seem even nature is against them. There is so much happening in the story, yet I was confused at no point.

This was a joy to read. More so than any other tale I have read of late. The characters were at no point safe and could be killed off quickly, which had you fearing for their action and heartbroken at their losses. No epic deed heroes here and definitely no over-the-top epic boss fights. Instead, we get gritty, grim, dangerous, run-in fears adventure, and I loved it!

I highly recommend this title. Just go buy it!

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