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Summary

Siege of Terra, Book 6 

With the Lion's Gate space port taken by the enemy, Jaghatai Khan of the White Scars prepares a brazen gambit, but one of his former brothers rises to take up arms against him.

Listen to it because: the heroic and dynamic White Scars hurtle headlong into combat with the unyielding Death Guard. As brother battles brother, the fate of Terra itself hangs in the balance.

The story: the Inner Walls are breached.

Traitor vanguards tear towards the heart of the Palace, sensing victory. Desperate gambits are attempted: an unwilling saint is released into the ruins, as well as an enthusiastic sinner. A black sword rises, forged from spite, ready to create a legend. But amid the slaughter, Jaghatai Khan, Warhawk of Chogoris, prepares to launch the most audacious strike of the conflict. His goal is nothing less than the liberation of the Lion's Gate space port. Cut off from any help, he stakes everything on one desperate counter-offensive, launched against an old enemy who has been made far greater than he ever was before. As the White Scars ride out against the newly crowned lords of life and death, they know that defeat for them dooms not only the Legion, but Terra itself. 

Written by Chris Wraight. Narrated by Jonathan Keeble.

©2021 Games Workshop Limited (P)2021 Games Workshop Limited

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Well-written filler

The Siege of Terra series is beginning to feel like Peter Jackson's Hobbit movies - enough plot for one decent book stretched out to fill several instalments. Some of the previous parts have fared better than others; The Solar War had the advantage of covering a precise stage of the siege in space, meaning it had a beginning, a middle and an end. The Lost and The Damned from Guy Haley benefited from being the start of the siege proper and gave us the defenders' set-up for the first time. Gav Thorpe's The First Wall was about, um - a wall, and was often about that interesting. Saturnine found the undoubted talents of Dan Abnett more or less on autopilot. Mortis, was - well, actually about the best John French novel I've read if I skipped all the parts about Titans (it's just my opinion, but most Black Library publications centred around the tedious 'God-Machines' are dire).

Cue Chris Wraight for Part Six. He's been on an impressive roll recently; the Watchers of The Throne series and Valdor were entertaining. His Varangantua crime novel, Bloodlines, was superb. So, what does he bring to the SoT?

The highly familiar: Jumping around between various ongoing strands, quite a lot of space expended on the inner struggles of the more unimpressive traitors such as Mortarian, or the World Eaters' Khan, to make them appear more compelling and threatening (seriously, in a real war, wouldn't the World Eaters just get obliterated in their first charge?). Long passages introducing mortal Imperial Army characters, so we understand that they are tired, demoralised and overawed by the general um, bigness of Space Marines - and then they die (digression: maybe it's just me, but there's something very unconvincing about 'transhuman dread'. The whole concept feels like it was made up by single, 40-something nerds who still live with their mothers). The slightly confusing sub-plot following Oll, John Grammaticus and co limps onward, still nobody asking, 'Where are we going and what are we going to do when get there?" I'm also starting to get slightly fatigued by Jonathan Keeble's habit of shouting during the combat scenes.

The Different: Surprisingly little focus on Primarchs/Emps/Horus/Malcador, a plus point. Chris Wraight seems to have deliberately avoided this in favour of telling the story from the viewpoint of more relatable characters. As it's Wraight, of course, we get a lot of White Scars and Death Guard action (unfortunately highlighting Keeble's one accent that he gives every 'oriental' character). Very little of Katsuhiro, which is a relief. I don't dislike him, but his arc feels exhausted. He's been useful to allow us to see the siege through the eyes of a terrified civilian-turned-conscript, but I think we get it now (yeah, yeah, War is Hell). Fun stuff: Sigismund finally goes ape%^*t, Keeler the saint let loose in the ruins, foreshadowing religious aspects of the 'modern' Imperium just as the seeds of the Inquisition were sown in previous books. Basilio Fo returns with a larger part than before. He's a welcome addition to the cast who adds a bit of mischief to proceedings. Oh yes, and of course, we get the Khan versus Mortarian rematch.

As it is, though, we end with all the definitive events of the siege still to come. Warhawk is polished and often highly entertaining. In summary though, it's cleverly-written filler, with Wraight spinning things out, treading water and tantalising us with the promise of events which ultimately get left for another volume. Peter Jackson only squeezed three movies out of The Hobbit. There's still two more SoT books to go.

19 people found this helpful

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Superb

A great addition to the series that gets to the point without all the usual 8 hours of dithering about.

4 people found this helpful

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  • TJ
  • 19-10-21

Not fluf, this one's a hit in my books...

Amoung the forever saga/cash cow of the HH, with all its many hits (Horus Rising, Legion etc) and misses (did someone say Slamanders?!), this one was great. I missed it immediately on completion (which sounds pathetic, but true) and I may even listen to it again which would be unheard of for me. Measured against the other siege series books it is certainly on a par with Saturnine which is right up there as one of, if not my favourite of the entire HH.

My immediate concern was this would be another fluf fest to endure to get to that final scene on the Vengeful Spirit we've all being waiting for (and potentially dreading?). Fear not, while in the grand scheme of things there is little significant "progress" -spolier!- there are many fantastic scenes. There's plenty of Primarch but it's not overwhelming and leaves ample time for the adventurers of less significant characters. We even say goodbye to a few but their exit did not disapoint.

And obviously another great performance by JK. Having listened to a few 40k books in the interim between this and Mortis I'd forgotten how good Keeble's narration is. Someone better wrap that man up in cotton wool until this things all done and dusted.

My only criticism... what is all this perpetual rubbish GW? Don't mess the whole series up at the last hurdle with those boring goats!

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent

Excellent narration, superb story with great knowledge of all the story of the overall Heresy.

2 people found this helpful

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Favorite

This one is probably my favorite of all of the siege of terra books so far, really great stuff

2 people found this helpful

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Amazing

Just a brilliant book!! The Khan is the Man and the white Scars are fantastic!!

1 person found this helpful

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Brilliant

So happy it was good , after Morris was a bit of a let down this book returned me to Egypt I have read nearly 60 of these novels and has been a part of my life for 20 years
I'm almost sad it's nearly over .
But nothing lasts forever.
Not even the light of he who sits on the throne , still a lot to go though and I can't wait
A fantastic book well written and answering a few more questions personally needed closure on ,
Sigismund is now the proto badass he is known to become over the next 10,000 years
Awesome congratulations to all the original writers I've been with you every step of the way . P.S Jonathan Keeble IS the voice of grim dark , long may he continue. 10/10

1 person found this helpful

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  • 5
  • 01-11-21

Gripping!!

Couldn't stop listening, Keeble brings it to life so vividly, lifting you up and putting you down like a leaf on the wind.

1 person found this helpful

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Out. Of. The. Park

In some ways, a more intimate installment of the series, which is an interesting change from the monumental, apocalyptic, battles of the previous book.

Chris Wraight takes us into the minds of those on both sides, revealing sometimes surprising complexities and nuances of character.

Genuinely, laughed out loud in a couple of places, not because of humour so much as delight at a surprising turn or an unexpected outcome.

Jonathan Keeble is, as always, excellent, bringing life and subtly to the characters and ramping up the drama fantastically. Also, I don't think I'll ever read the word 'boom' in quite the same way every again! 😁

All in all, a fantastic listen and an awesome production. Can't wait for the next episode!

1 person found this helpful

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kharns weapon

overall great read and I really enjoyed it! much better then 'mortis' in my opinion.
only complain i have is that kharns weapon was a chain axe not power axe. ;P

1 person found this helpful

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  • Lucas Jessick
  • 25-10-21

For the Khan!

If you dislike high speed ultraviolence, go suck a greasy nut you filthy Adeptys Mechanicus player.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Iloveheavy
  • 02-12-21

Unbelievable

I really think this is the best SOT book. Chris really brought the strain that Dorn is under to us in a way that no other BL author has as well as exactly how powerful these demon Primarchs are.
The environment is well written and he has a knack for the Scars(imho)
The huge battle that takes place(between brothers)is easily some of the best fight sequences I’ve read.
I never write reviews.
Well.
Hardly ever.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and Jon Keeble read it flawlessly. He really is a treasure. The life he brings to these books is a thing to behold.
Take this for what it’s worth. Get yours and decide for yourself.

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  • James O.
  • 08-11-21

bland

the story somehow makes characters bland and uninspiring. the major fight sequence is disappointing.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Wesley Baugh
  • 15-10-21

High quality

We all know the overall story; however, so many linking story lines that we grown to care about are really the strength of this series.
U can feel the despair of the characters as they are stotred down to their core. Born again as new with faith, hope, and duty

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 22-01-22

meh basic

meh basic story. second least favorite of the seige of terra series. some good some bad nothing really makes it stand out.

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  • Guru
  • 18-01-22

I don't even know what's happening at this point.

I love how some random minor character arcs get a follow up, but it's a lot of describing what the scene looks and feels like with som arc carrying through, some ending, and I know it's supposed to feel impactful; but it feels excessively drawn out. I'm a nobody who would make the meaningful arc conclusions grandiose, punctual, and explain the impact of the event, as opposed to "almost dies 4-10 times in a single battle, but goes on for another 10 killing blows." We get it.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 17-01-22

An okay entry into the seige of terra.

I enjoy the siege of terra books and the Horus Hereasy in general. I do however wish that they did not jump around so much in the Siege of terra books. Several of these stories should be short stories or thier own novellas in my opinion.

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  • axcl99stang
  • 13-01-22

Great listen

The Khan is back! Great book showing the progress of the Siege of Terra. I can't wait for the next.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-01-22

lots of fun. well narrated!!

if you want a snap shot withing a snap shot of the siege of Terra-here it is.

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  • Jade scott
  • 01-01-22

how did i miss this author?

so much better than Lost and the Damned! great prose and well thought out action.