All of creation suffers, young ones. Only in accepting our own mortality can we make a difference. Only in bearing the burden of our failures can we find the strength to go on. Only in detachment from glory, or honour, or jealousy... from life itself can we hope to spare others from grief.
We are Doom Eagles. And we are dead already.
In the nightmare future of the 41st Millennium, galaxies burn in the fires of eternal war. Fighting for its very survival, humanity must battle a myriad heretical alien races, but the most dangerous enemies of all are the former champions of mankind itself, perverted by the foul taint of Chaos.
This classic science fiction anthology was first published by Games Workshop in the late 1980s and richly deserves its cult reputation. Finally made available once more in this expanded edition with three new tales, it includes superb dark SF stories by Storm Constantine, William King, Neil McIntosh,, Charles Stross, & Ian Watson.
This book had two printings. First by Boxtree in 1990 with only seven stories and the latter with nine. Those two short shories I reviewed here
This was an anbiguous book with great stories and some who I didn't enjoy. Some die-hard fans would say I am heretic and who cares, right?
1) Deathwing by Bryan Ansell & William King - This tale is where Deathwing company was born. Here we learn what Deathwing is all about*. Here we also learn that the Dark Angels were based on the american indians. This particular tale involves Genestealers infesting on one recruiting feral world and how they cope with it. It's quiet good and gave me another perspective from the Dark Angels. Later fluff the Dark Angels are presented as consumed with the pursuit of their fallen brothers called Fallen Angels, even sometimes putting them in the path of other chapters or the Inquisition. Because of it they are eyed with suspiction. Top notch story. 8/10
*Info: Deathwing and Ravenwing are two companies within the Dark Angels
2) Warped Stars by Ian Watson - This tale was possible one that I must read in later time to fully compreehend. In this tale we set of as Inquisition, with Grimm (the squat that is part of the retinue of Jaq in the Inquisition Trilogy) and a Ogrynn bodyguard with the help of loyalist chapter Grief Bringers are set against The Enslavers (a psychic sentient beings). Interesting tale. I won't give any rating since I am waiting to read it again.
3) Lacrymata by Storm Constantine - This tale is about the perils of the Warp as a Navigator and an Astropath deal with the calling of the warp. There are something that draw them to it. It's like that phrase that we are Children of Light but we are drawn to Darkness because deep inside we are chaos. This phrase says it all and if you don't get the meaning as Nietsche "if you stare into the abyss long enough the abyss stares back at you". Maybe with time the writer could have developed more this story. 7/10
4) Monastry of Death by Charles Stross - I didn't knew he wrote a story for black library and it was a good story with a great plot and twist in the end. This tale we follow a invasion/colonization from a Imperial Fleet to bring another planet back to Terra's dominion. Of course, the planet residents don't want that but a frontal war is foolish so a compromisse must be met. 8/10
5) Seed of Doubt by Neil McIntosh - This tale is the weakestof the collection. I really didn't understand what was happening and I didn't care. It was the main reason I stop reading these tales. 3.5/10
6) Devil's Marauders by William King - It was one of the best tales of the anthology. Almost worth reading the book because of it. In a jungle wars a group of imperial soldiers led by an Commissar are fleeing from an area that is going to be torched from the fleet above. After some minor conflicts they arrive to an area knowing that their work is not done. With a short story, King made a good character development. Great interaction betweeen the characters. This is another example of why William King is the best writer in BL. 9.5/10
7) The Alien Beast Within by Ian Watson - In this tale we follow Meh'Lindi before she was integrated within Draco team. This tale we learn how and why she was morphed with a genestealer DNA. Meh'Lindi. To anyone who read the Inquisitor War Trilogy I would reccomend reading these two short stories becasue will give depth to the characters even if it's not required to do. 7/10