This week’s thoughts are on War of the Fang by Chris Wraight; a journey back in time to the 32nd Millennium and the enmity between the Thousand Sons and the Space Wolves. I read this on a holiday to Copenhagen in the winter, which seemed appropriate with the freezing cold weather at the time! If you are a fan of Space Wolves then this book is an absolute must to read.
Setting the Scene
As the short blurb from the Black Library website says: Magnus the Red leads an assault on Fenris, in revenge for the long-ago burning of Prospero. Leading the defence is Bjorn the Fell-Handed. The scene is set for a clash of legends.
The book includes two stories: first of all the novella The Hunt for Magnus and then the Battle for the Fang.
The Hunt for Magnus follows the obsessions of the Great Wolf Harek Ironhelm in his hunt for Magnus (unsurprisingly). It also shows the complexities of Wolf Lord politics and how all are not entirely in agreement with the Great Wolf.
Battle for the Fang is the epic invasion of Fenris by the Thousand Sons and the valiant defence by only one Great Company against all odds. It is a great story that will keep you hooked until the end.
The book had me hooked right from the start and I was left in Copenhagen without a book to read on the final day. The pacing is fantastic and The Hunt for Magnus sets up the events for the Battle of the Fang perfectly. Chris Wraight is fast becoming one of my favourite BL authors.
Avoiding spoilers, my top 5 highlights were:
- The complexity of the politics between Wolf Lords
- The web of deceipt weaved by the Thousand Sons (although you’d expect nothing less from them)
- A dark and shameful secret that turns out to be a trap for the Great Wolf
- Lots of Dreadnoughts in the final battle
- The human defenders of the Fang
Also a special mention to the character Haakon Gylfasson and his quest on the ship Nauro.
I always have to give at least a small negative and in this case the only thing I can say is that the Thousand Son sorcerers felt rather one-dimensional. That might just be a symptom of their extreme loathing and bitterness for the Space Wolves but I would have liked a little more fleshing out of who they were and their motives.
Read this if you like…
- Space Wolves
- Thousand Sons
- A Primarch fighting a Dreadnought (!)
Where to Get
My copy was an ebook from the Black Library website where you can also order a paperback version – http://www.blacklibrary.com/all-products/war-of-the-fang-ebook.html
Further Reading / Listening
A Thousand Sons by Graham McNeill – If you want to delve further in to the Thousand Sons then you have to start here with their beginnings in the Horus Heresy.
Prospero Burns by Dan Abnett – One my favourite Black Library novels and probably the best insight in to what makes the Space Wolves what they are.
Parting of the Ways (Audiobook) by Chris Wraight – This focuses on one of my favourite ever characters, Bjorn the Fell-Handed, and his final battle before entombment as a dreadnought.