Tuesday, 13 October 2015

The Unforgiven, Gav Thorpe

Publishers: Black Library

Pages: 446

Main Characters:

Azrael, Annael, Telemenus, Cypher

Picking up straight after the Master of Sanctity, The Unforgiven describes that the Dark Angels' plan has failed with the escape of Astelan. The chapter looks like it could be turned to turmoil and with the capture of the thrice-cursed traitor Cypher and his revelation that the chapter is in grave danger, the Dark Angels must make a decision on what their future entails. Do they trust the Fallen and follow his guidance or do they risk everything by ignoring him and carrying on as they always have done, casting further lies and secrets on the already allusive Chapter? Supreme Grand Master Azrael and his close advisors must come up with a plan of action to counter the danger posed to them by the Fallen Space Marines.

After disobeying orders and saving his friend Sabrael, Annael is serving a long penance. Under the stern gaze of Chaplain Malcifer, the boring and menial tasks of cleaning and maintenance work have worn Annael’s mind down to a pulp as he still cannot accept that his actions were wrong. As destruction looms over the Dark Angels all Space Marines are needed to fight against the traitors. But until Annael truly repents and understands the consequences of his actions his superiors will not allow him back into the Black Knights. With his strong will (and sometimes thick skull) it may be too late for Annael to help his comrades in the ensuing chaos!

The brutal mutilation on the world of Ulthor has not dampened Telemenus’s spirit. With the Emperor at his side and a new understanding and zeal for his role in humanities’ protection against the Xenos, Mutant and Traitor, Telemenus’s spirit and blood has become ignited! As a reward for his dedication the injured Space Marine is rewarded by Grand Master Belial, becoming entombed within the battle armour of a Dreadnought. Though emerging as a legend amongst the Deathwing for his actions on Ulthor, Telemenus knows that he still has his duty to do and will use his new body to further the Dark Angels’ and the Emperor’s cause.

Deathwing Dreadnaught

I was so excited to start reading this book! Master of Sanctity is probably my favourite book that I’ve read this year and the ending absolutely leaves you wanting for more! However, I’m sad to say that I was a little disappointed. 

One of the main reason I liked Master of Sanctity was because of the characters Sapphon and Asmodai. Their bitter rivalry caused some great tension in the second book and their very different styles and personalities complemented each other perfectly. In The Unforgiven, they are reduced to smaller roles as Azrael becomes a dominant character. So small in fact, that about two thirds of the way into the book they are totally cut adrift and not heard of again until the very end of the novel! And even then there is only a few paragraphs quickly summarising their fates. I wouldn’t mind so much if there was going to be another book and they remerged there, but there isn’t and I can’t quite understand how a character as important as Sapphon, which the second book in the series is named after, can be so easily removed. It’s like removing Harry Potter from the final book and then quickly mentioning him at the end, so you know he is alive and has survived the trauma the whole series has been building up to.

Nevertheless, the book did have some really good points such as the final battle between the Dark Angels and Chaos. I especially liked that other chapters of the ‘Unforgiven’ were included in the battle and it was pretty cool seeing the difference between them and the secretive Dark Angels. In addition, I did like that Thorpe brought Azrael into the series as he is such an important character and I enjoyed reading about the secrets the Supreme Grand Master knew about the Chapter, such as the Watchers and Luther. Even though I liked Azrael’s introduction, I think it was done at the expense of losing Sapphon and Asmodai. I would have preferred if Telemenus’s had been replaced because I don’t think his story added that much extra to The Unforgiven, I honestly forgot that he survived Ulthor!

To summaries, this was by far my least favourite book in the series and I was disappointed by that. The ending was pretty epic and I think it leaves the series open for later novels by Thorpe or possibly by other authors. I’d love to see a one off novel about Sapphon, maybe him getting his judgement from the Council for his failings with Astelan and his eventual seppuku (falling on his sword)?

I’d suggest this book to anyone who’s a fan of Gav Thorpe and has read his other Dark Angels novels. I’d also suggest it to anyone who is looking to get into the Science-Fiction genre because I think Warhammer 40K have some of the best novels in that genre.

If you are a fan of Warhammer 40K novels please leave me some suggestions on other books to read, I really want to get accustomed with other Space Marine chapters and authors so please leave me a comment with a suggestion or go to my Facebook.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...