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View Full Version : Opinion Poll: which of these is the worst book you've read?



Xhalax
18-09-2005, 10:37
so which of the books listed above would you deem the worst book/series of books that you have read, PLEASE give a reason for your choice as i don't want this to be a spamfest

In my opinion Iron Hands is the worst book I have read so far (although i have heard that Fire Warrior sucks more that this) my reasoning for this is i found none of the characters symapthetic and the lead character did far too much whining and moaning, it actually got so bad that I haven't managed to finish if (despite the struggles of my older sibling to get me to do so, i just can't bring myself to finish it), i am also not a big fan of Jonathan Green's book (having found Crusade For Armagedon similarly boring - plus i hate the Black Templars with a passion)

As for the worst series, I would have to say the Soul Drinkers series as they started off reasonably good, but I found that I cared less and less about the characters as the stories went on, also i feel that Ben Counters' style tends to treat the reader as a fool at times (by repeating things often as though the reader is likely to forget)

Please make your feeling known, but keep it civil and NO SPAM

boogle
18-09-2005, 10:51
personally i feel that Pawns of Chaos is the weakest stand alone book due to i found it rather confusing and i didn't enjoy the book in general

I would have to say that my least favourite series is the Inquisitor Trilogy, mainly due to the fact that Jac Draco seems to me to be the worst Inquisitor in the history of Inquisitors, plus the books really lost their way half way through the second book, and meandered its way into nothing, plus the ending was very unsatisfactory

firestorm40k
18-09-2005, 11:46
I read a lot of BL books, I must say I've not read the Space Wolves or Ciaphas Cain series, but all the others and I wouldn't say there are any 'bad' ones. There are some which I've enjoyed more than others, for example I think 'Necropolis' from the Ghost's series is the best 40k novel, but I haven't even read the latest Ghost novels as I feel the series is wearing a bit thin.

I'm currently reading 'Eye of Terror' which is okay, but it's getting on a bit and some of the subsequent fluff/plot developments with 40k have made it a bit contradictory. I'm wanting to read 'Iron Hands', and that new 'Death Watch' series which is coming out soon. So long as they keep publishing 40k novels I'll keep reading 'em!

Xhalax
18-09-2005, 11:58
I've not read all of those series either....and i did enjoy all the ones that I have read (not read the Last Chancers, Shira Calpurnia, Leoten Semper or most of the Ghosts...as I'm busy reading them right now).

But after careful thought, I went for the ones that i enjoyed the least and as I said before....it was the Soul Drinkers one. True in some of the series, there are books with are much better than the rest. But they make up for the lacking novels.
Whereas Soul Drinkers didn't quite measure up. The first book as the best, The Bleeding Chalice was alright...but I felt very let down by Crimson Tears. And Mr. Counters writing style does nothing for me or my attention!

I do share most of you sentiments there firestorm40K...as long as the Black Library keeps publishing them, I'll buy and read them. And for the most part, I've enjoyed practically everyone I've read....to a degee. Only with the above exceptions...but at least I gave them a chance to wow me. They just seemed to fail.

He Who Laughs
18-09-2005, 12:17
I haven't read many of these on the list, but out of the ones I have read (Kill-Team, FireWarrior, Gaunts Ghosts 1 2 & 3, Crusade for Armageddon, Storm of Iron, Farseer, Execution Hour, Shadow Point, Ian Watsons Inquisitor Trilogy) I found Gav Thorpes first person style of Kill-Team to be pathetic. And the action sequences were completely overdone ("I stepped forward onto the tippy toes of left boot and with a spinning, right side heel kick with two pikes and a half twist, connecting with his left lower cheekbone - I cracked him fair in the gob"), I'm sure Gav Thorpes entire fighting background comes from watching bad Van Damme movies. And taking on a whole Hunter Cadre, killing most and taking no casualties from return fire is just beyond belief. I can't seem to find it on my shelf anymore, maybe I mistook it for a bog roll...

But I highly enjoyed the Gaunts Ghosts, Execution Hour/Shadow Point, Crusade for Armageddon and Storm of Iron - and would recommend them. Gaunts Ghosts being the best series, with Necropolis being the best out of the lot. Made me wanna start a cityfight IG army!!

Thud
18-09-2005, 13:29
Out of those I've only read these:

- Space Wolf
- Eisenhorn
- The Inquisitor trilogy
- The Cain books
- The Shira Calpurnia books
- The Ventris books

And out of those I would have to say that the Calpurnia series is the worst. Not because it is particularily bad, but because I like the others better.

Adept
18-09-2005, 13:29
Of the ones I've read, Gaunt's Ghosts struck me as quite bad. At least, bad at pretending to be a 40K novel. The innacuracies were too glaring to be ignored. They really stood out like dog's balls and made me step 'out' of the story and back into the real world to think 'But thats not right!'

Xhalax
18-09-2005, 13:39
And out of those I would have to say that the Calpurnia series is the worst. Not because it is particularily bad, but because I like the others better.

I agree with you there Thud.
It's usually the case when I'm asked about my least favourite 40K books. With a few exceptions.

Tom - Heretic
18-09-2005, 14:03
Anything by JK Rowling is pretty dire, but the book a comedic friend gave me for a birthday a few years was, and still is, hard to beat.
Killer Crabs!

Xhalax
18-09-2005, 14:09
Not exactly sure where that fits in with a 40K based poll...but each to their own I guess.

Tom - Heretic
18-09-2005, 14:12
Nope, but somethings you just can't keep inside.

t-tauri
18-09-2005, 14:26
I've found all the ones you've listed to be pretty readable. My pet hates are Crusade for Armagedon, which I haven't finished as it was so bad and the clown employed as an editor at Black Library who lets stupid background mistakes like Chaos Marines in razorbacks get through.

Anaxagorax
18-09-2005, 14:37
A tough choice indeed, as nearly everything BL publishes has about as much litterary value as the worst of those romance novels you find at gas stations.

Character sketching and development is paperthin, plots are dodgy to the point of total nonsense and most of it are stolen from something else anyway, writing and composition makes you cringe and the fact that most writers appears to have no knowledge of the 40K background and setting whatsoever sure doesn't help either.

The only novels that are actually worth anything from a litterary and artistical point of view is the old Inquisition War trilogy, great characters and good development, great composition, clever plotline throughout the books and they demands something from the reader instead of just giving everything away. All of which are probably reasons why most people have no idea what they are about, dismiss them as 'bad' and go back to those easily digested McBooks that doesn't force them to think that much.

:) Anax (Librarian, specialised in litterature)

boogle
18-09-2005, 15:38
the reason why the Inquisition War Trilogy sucks is basically from half way through Harlequin and ALL through Chaos Child the story goes to hell in a handbasket and the ending is really poor and a total letdown, plus Ian Watson was warned that if he went through with his original plan (to kill the Emperor) he would have had hell to pay

Wintermute
18-09-2005, 15:46
I've found all the ones you've listed to be pretty readable. My pet hates are Crusade for Armagedon, which I haven't finished as it was so bad and the clown employed as an editor at Black Library who lets stupid background mistakes like Chaos Marines in razorbacks get through.

I must agree with you. Crusade For Armageddon is by far the worst book the BL has released.

The author had very little knowledge of the 40K universe but had seen a couple of episodes, or more, of Star Trek. How else do you explain a Titan moving at "half-impulse speed" :wtf: :eek:

Strikerkc
18-09-2005, 15:53
the reason why the Inquisition War Trilogy sucks is basically from half way through Harlequin and ALL through Chaos Child the story goes to hell in a handbasket and the ending is really poor and a total letdown, plus Ian Watson was warned that if he went through with his original plan (to kill the Emperor) he would have had hell to pay

That still doesn't change the fact that the end of the serise is horible. :cries::mad:

People should feel free to read the first and the second, but the 3rd is not an option. Just make up your own ending, it will be better.

VanDoo
18-09-2005, 17:05
I have to agree with Xhalax on many a point. Iron Hands is teh sucks. Whoever wrote it deserves a good flogging. And Soul Drinkers did start out good, but too many of the cool marines got killed for me to care by Crimson Tears (ooooh... scouts!).

Other (un)worthy mentions:
-Firewarrior: *vomits* One lone firewarrior vs a Chaos Marine horde = one dead firewarrior, not a dead chaos horde.
-The Blood Angels saga: A bad joke, really. Also guilty of having Chaos Marines riding razorbacks.

Incidentally, I found Crusade for Armageddon not all that bad, actually.

CELS
18-09-2005, 17:14
A strange poll, since most of the novels listed are considered to be the favourites of 40k fans. It would make more sense if you didn't have the 'other' option, or if you included widely rejected doodoo like the Iron Hands novel, Fire Warrior, etc.

The Inquisition war trilogy isn't really my cup of tea either. The sexual stuff was just.... bad. Not to mention that Draco's retinue had an extreme Fellowship of the Ring feel to it... :eyebrows:

starlight
18-09-2005, 17:26
After reading a half dozen BL books from various storylines, I have to say that I find them all equally bad. Poor adherance to the background it a big thing, poor writing is another and just generally poorly done tops it off. I haven't bought a BL book in years because they quite frankly aren't worth my time or money.

t-tauri
18-09-2005, 18:21
I enjoy most of them. They're not great art but most are readable at least and pass a few hours in a tolerable fashion. I even enjoyed the Iron Hands novel.

Khaine's Messenger
18-09-2005, 19:34
In my opinion Iron Hands is the worst book I have read so far (although i have heard that Fire Warrior sucks more that this) my reasoning for this is i found none of the characters symapthetic and the lead character did far too much whining and moaning, it actually got so bad that I haven't managed to finish

The only BL book I did that to was The Blades of Chaos. But I definately agree about Iron Hands. My main problems were the way scenes were stretched out or simply included for no apparent reason, as if they were levels in a videogame (indeed, the entire idea of going from world to world to find the obelisks that were keys to the planet was a bit dull)...like the scene with the Defiler (boss battle!!! The key is to dodge its attacks and lure it near the explosive chimera for the win!!!) or the Cadians battling valiantly against Plague Marines (only to have the IH drop in and save them). It also lacked scenes that would have been decently character building, like Gdolkin acting in his supposed role as a spiritual advisor (he is and Iron Father, yes?), or in a manner similar to a Techmarine; instead we get Gdolkin the well-versed book-learned know-it-all whiny-britches and Melchior the one-note Librarian...heck, there weren't even any scenes that made the Iron Hands look like the merciless butchers of Contqual. Wrapping them around your pinky by making jabs at their concept of honor is one thing, but....

Ah yes, and before I forget....we got little/no exposition on the "badguy" until a little ways before the end of the novel (which, like most BL novels, ends with a Megabattlefest battle...). "The Iscariot" was such an interesting moniker, too....

But the litany of problems could probably go on forever; as others have noted, this is a particularly despised book by many. And, to be honest, BL novels really aren't to be noted for their artistic excellence in any event (except by comparison to one another). Not that this excuses them to churn out more drivel....

Of course, the worst book (going by the thread title rather than the opening post) I've ever read is Souls in the Great Machine by Sean McMullen. I still don't know how I convinced myself to read it to its conclusion....

Yorkiebar
18-09-2005, 19:43
From that list I've only read the Gaunt's Ghosts novels (who hasn't?) and the Space Wolf novels, enjoying both series immensely.

EmperorsChamp01
18-09-2005, 20:40
I didnt like the last chancers novels. They where stupid. I dont have anything else to say about them 'cept they where stupid.

Pertinax
18-09-2005, 21:23
I can't say I thought much of the Farseer novel. I was also not impressed by the Shira Calpurnia Series.

*votes*

G8Keeper
18-09-2005, 23:05
Angels of Darkness.

Although it increased the amount of fluff out there for my beloved DA, it just didnt feel right to me that an Interrogator Chaplain, the ipitomy of the chapter's religious belief's and most stalwart of them all, would be swayed by tha ramblings of the Unforgiven no matter who.

Lafeel Abriel
18-09-2005, 23:34
Eye of Terror. It was no more than "okay", at best, worse than that, imo..

New Cult King
19-09-2005, 00:36
Pawns of Chaos, while a bold direction for a writer to take the fluff, is pretty poor, and the only one I haven't finished.

I NEED to get Caves of Ice as For The Emperor was awesome. Ciaphas Cain rocks.

Delicious Soy
19-09-2005, 03:08
I voted Last Chancers. 13th Legion was a pretty solid novel but:

once you kill all the characters, there's little point in having a sequel
Kill-Team was mediocre at best while Annihlation squad was complete tosh.

Xhalax
19-09-2005, 08:15
Angels of Darkness.


I take it that you're a Dark Angels player/fan G8Keeper?

This always seems to be the concensus with Dark Angels players.

Although I'm a Wolves fan and player, I did enjoy Angels of Darkness, but there was part of me that wondered how an Interrogator Chaplian might be effected by such things. Thinking they shouldn't....but then I added more human qualities to the Space Marines and thought it might be possible.

But that's just me. And excellent book though...at least in my opinion!

Str10_hurts
19-09-2005, 10:36
I wasent too impressed by the spacewolf series, although i quite liked the first book...the rest was crappy.

Storm of iron and Eisenhorn were the best.

lord_blackfang
19-09-2005, 10:51
Angels of Darkness.

Although it increased the amount of fluff out there for my beloved DA, it just didnt feel right to me that an Interrogator Chaplain, the ipitomy of the chapter's religious belief's and most stalwart of them all, would be swayed by tha ramblings of the Unforgiven no matter who.

So the book is bad just because you don't like how one of the characters acted? I'll take inner doubts and fears over "emotionless robot marines" any day.


Personally, I hate Shadow Point with a passion. Why isn't it on the list? It was one the worst pieces of crap I've ever read (and I read a lot). Anime fanfiction usually has better plot and characters :rolleyes:

Verm1s
19-09-2005, 11:00
Am I the only one who didn't like the Cain series? Bloated with the bad tongue-in-cheek humour that ruins most WH fiction for me. An unlikeable character whose logic is severely flawed (escape dangerous missions by volunteering for dangerous missions). Too predictable thanks to too many instances of 'if only I knew what was coming next'.

And eye-searing cover art.

I guess the worst thing about the series is that I found out it was so bad after enjoying the Cain stories in Inferno.

PhrollikK
19-09-2005, 11:06
I've only read the first Commissar Cain novel and the Eisenhorn Trilogy. Of them I thought Cain was quite crap. The character of Cain was the only thing holding that story aloft as the rest is just fiction garbage. I tend to shy away from fan-litterature as it usually is a bunch of half-arsed writers out to put food on the table, the stories being paper-thin. Cain proved that point.

On the otherhand I found Eisenhorn really good. It has some dodgy writings mixed in, but mostly it's really good. Just think that the Eisenhorn books were mostly written before any Inquisitor material was brought to light and is essentially a first delve into the world of Inquisitors. That I think Abnett handles really well.

mooby
19-09-2005, 11:13
crossfire is total rubbish

Sai-Lauren
19-09-2005, 12:06
Farseer
Yay, we're getting a book which is going to cover the Eldar, except all we have is one farseer, one possible aspect warrior as his bodyguard, and the main character is a human rogue trader.
Oh, and the plot is the standard retrieve something before the main characters "friend"/patron who's actually really evil and wants to do something nasty to him so as to gain even more power shows up and does said nasty thing to him with said item to be retrieved.

William King, you can do SO much better than that. :rolleyes:

firestorm40k
19-09-2005, 12:13
Angels of Darkness.

Although it increased the amount of fluff out there for my beloved DA, it just didnt feel right to me that an Interrogator Chaplain, the ipitomy of the chapter's religious belief's and most stalwart of them all, would be swayed by tha ramblings of the Unforgiven no matter who.

Actually, I think this is one of the BEST 40k novels. Quite simply, it shows how c*** the Dark Angels are (just look at how the Dark Angels players behaved in the EoT campaign to remove any doubt! :p ;) )

Seriously, there are touches of detail about it which hadn't been in other novels featuring Space Marines, and I liked the twisty-turny plot. And the ending was a kick in the teeth, too, which makes a nice change: considering that Warhammer 40k is supposedly set in a 'dark' millenium, the 'good guys' seem to win an awful lot of the time in 40k novels!

PS like your signature btw. Made me smile! :D

Agent Brown
19-09-2005, 16:43
After reading a half dozen BL books from various storylines, I have to say that I find them all equally bad. Poor adherance to the background it a big thing, poor writing is another and just generally poorly done tops it off. I haven't bought a BL book in years because they quite frankly aren't worth my time or money.

Exactly. The only recent BL novels (last 5-6 years) that I actually own I've picked up second hand. The shameless theft of superior stories and characters (Sharpe, Flashman) is hard to forgive.
Many of the authors also seem to have little or no knowledge of the 40K background and, especially when trying to describe military matters, haven't the faintest idea what they're talking about.
On the other hand, I don't have a problem with, say, CSM having Razorbacks. It's a big universe and some must have been captured or turned traitor over the millenia.
Bring back Kim Newman. The man's worth every penny.

StugMeister
19-09-2005, 19:11
I hated NightBringer - the Ultramarines didn't seem right to me and the whole Dark Eldar physical torture/mutilation stuff really put me off my lunch.

VanDoo
19-09-2005, 19:31
and the whole Dark Eldar physical torture/mutilation stuff really put me off my lunch.

Me too! But that's what I find brilliant about it. It's torture, but it's sophisticated torture. The idea of a "flesh sculpture" is just so horrifying, it has to be DE!

Helicon_One
19-09-2005, 20:28
William King, you can do SO much better than that. :rolleyes:

Judging by his 40K stuff, I'm not sure he can. Farseer was a bad rip-off of Eye Of Terror with a pointy-ear thrown in, and the Space Wolf series (judging by the first two books, as I gave up after that) was a bad rip off of Ian Watson's old Space Marine book.

And yet, the guy gets treated like some sort of fluff god. Meh. Maybe his WFB stuff is better.

Tim

boogle
19-09-2005, 22:35
The Space Wolf Book follows the path that every Space Marine Aspirant follows so its hard not to be similar to Space Marine, but at least in Space Wolf they don't manage to pilot a titan by eating someones brains :wtf:

neXus6
19-09-2005, 22:51
...I liked Farseer...okay so it wasn't anything like as good as the Gaunts Ghosts Series, Eisenhorn Trilogy, the Cain books or Ravenor but it was okay. I thought Fifteen Hours was going to a bit rubbish what with it being one of the "skinny" books but it is brilliant.

I've read 2 pages of Dawn of War and don't ever want to touch it ever again...so I guess that gets my vote.

Xhalax
20-09-2005, 07:39
It makes me wonder what the reasoning behind the 13 votes the Space Wolf series got.

Personally I enjoyed it due to the light heaqrted nature of the books....I'm a sucker for both Space Wolves and comedy.

Captain Brown
20-09-2005, 15:17
Sorry, I feel I cannot vote as I have read none of these titles (other than one or two of the Gaunt's Ghost books). I may have commented on some of the older titles (like the Warblade Trilogy, sorry Nigel), they were not particularly stellar books.

boogle
20-09-2005, 19:41
i may post a WFB thread in the said forum for those that are more into the WFB books. Captain Brown, if there is a specific 40K book that you didn't like, then just vote in the A N Other section

lord_blackfang - RE Shadowpoint, it is listed, its under the Leoten Semper choice