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PrimeMinisterDavidCameron
07-03-2010, 00:58
I'm coming over from 40k novels very enjoying the Horus Heresy series and I would like to immerse myself in WHFB story as well.

The thing is I would rather read books about the races I play which are High Elves, Lizardmen, and Skaven. I heard most of the books are about humans like in 40k. (There are almost zero books from the Xenos perspective)

Are there any recommendations? What are some of the best books to read?

bluesky322
07-03-2010, 01:55
i personally found the vampire genevieve a good series along with the vampire counts books you know what most the books i have read about vampires where good along with the nagash book and sigmar books

hm mabey i shouldnt answer this i like most books worst case scenario are books i find slow like the gaunts ghosts series

Roguebaron
07-03-2010, 01:59
[quote=bluesky322;4459035]i personally found the vampire genevieve a good series


I'd second this, I enjoyed the series.

I've also enjoyed the Malus Darkblade books and the older trollslayer series for a fun read. I'd stop Trollslayer once william king is done with it though, just doesn't seem to be as much fun.

PrimeMinisterDavidCameron
07-03-2010, 04:36
Vampires?

Honestly I think I'd rather read the Empire novels in WHFB than Vampires. I just can't stop thinking of teenage vampire novels like Twilight. There can't be battles or sieges in the genevieve series can there?

Shield of Freedom
07-03-2010, 04:42
I found Reiksguard and Knight Errant to be enjoyable. Not everyone agrees, but I liked them.

Gammalfarmor
07-03-2010, 07:03
I think you should like the Witch Hunter series and Gotrek and Felix.
The first one is a bit more serious then the second, but Gotrek have a big axe.

Razakel
07-03-2010, 07:24
In the order that I enjoy them the most:

Gotrek & Felix series (except for Orcslayer)

Malus Darkblade

Vampire Wars (though I only really enjoyed the last book, the first and second ones felt like preludes to it)

Genevieve is extremely good as well, it's tied with Vampire Wars really, and if I was honest with myself it was probably better

The Adventures of Florin and Lorenzo, which is brilliant but also has some good comic relief in it

Honourkeeper, which is a very good introduction to Dwarf culture if you've never read a book about Dwarves before

The "A Time of Legends" books are good but be wary, many of the books will cover things written in the relevant army book in only slightly more detail.

The ones I enjoyed:

Nagash which was good, if a bit all over the place for the first 150 pages

Shadow King, but not Malekith (which was the first in the series)

Heldenhammer was good, but Empire was better, it really brings Sigmar to life, it shows that he was an ordinary mortal man who had a dream of seeing a united Empire of man.

Satan
07-03-2010, 07:45
I hate the Genevieve series myself. They're downright awful.

The Gotrek & Felix series are a decent read (I have them all) but the story isn't really advancing anymore so...

My favourites, in no particular order, would probably be the following:

Malus Darkblade series

Vampire Wars series

The Sundering series

The Konrad series

I also recommend the anthologies: Tales from the old World, Death & Dishonour, etc.

someone2040
07-03-2010, 07:51
Honestly, echoing what most people have said.

Gotrek and Felix are good fun for reading about Dwarves with a deathwish.
Malus Darkblade is a nice read, still waiting for the follow up series.
Time of Legends have been good so far. I never payed attention to High Elf History 101, so the first book was new to me.
Blackhearts I enjoyed as well.
And the Regiments of the Empire or whatever the series has called, has been pretty decent so far.

I don't mind the fact that most of the books are Human/Elf/Dwarf. I mean... Lizardmen don't exactly have the most interesting perspective "Oh, you're not supposed to be here. Sorry we're going to have to kill you now. What's that? You stole our sacred items, yep, definately gonna have to die."

EmperorNorton
07-03-2010, 08:10
I'm coming over from 40k novels very enjoying the Horus Heresy series and I would like to immerse myself in WHFB story as well.

The thing is I would rather read books about the races I play which are High Elves, Lizardmen, and Skaven. I heard most of the books are about humans like in 40k. (There are almost zero books from the Xenos perspective)

Are there any recommendations? What are some of the best books to read?

For Highelves you have "Defenders of Ulthuan" (which I haven't read myself), "Honourkeeper" (although from the Dwarf perspective) as well as the Time of Legens novels "Malekith" (which I thought was decent) and "Shadow King" (just ordered that one).
The Skaven feature rather heavily in the Gotrek & Felix series (which IMO is so bad it's good again) and in one of the Blackhearts novels (the omnibus is worth the buy). Then there's "Grey Seer", a spin-off from Gotrek & Felix.
As for Lizardmen, you are out of luck. Some of the short stories in "Tales of the Old World" feature them, but I'm not aware of any more appearances.

That aside, I have to echo the praise for the Genevieve series, which I think are the only Warhammer novels with any literary value.
I also enjoyed "Guardians of the Forest" and "Knight Errant".
Others I have read that should be avoided at all costs are "Palace of the Plague Lord", "Murder in Marienburg" and "Oathbreaker".

Shadow_Steed
07-03-2010, 08:14
As I say in all these threads, Malus Darkblade!

Satan
07-03-2010, 08:18
Others I have read that should be avoided at all costs are "Palace of the Plague Lord", "Murder in Marienburg" and "Oathbreaker".

Haven't read the others, but Palace of the Plague lord is actually a very excellent read. I highly recommend C.L Werners With-hunter series too now that I think about it.

scarletsquig
07-03-2010, 08:27
The wine of dreams.

Great book, from the perspective of someone who isn't looking for warporn. Everyone else will probably be bored to death by it.

EmperorNorton
07-03-2010, 09:17
Haven't read the others, but Palace of the Plague lord is actually a very excellent read. I highly recommend C.L Werners With-hunter series too now that I think about it.

When you like stories along the lines of "adventurers meet, they go someplace, there's a monster, they fight, they go another place, there's another monster, they fight, they go to yet another place...", well, I guess then it's alright.
But even then it's still badly written, the characters are still only skin-deep and the story is still pointless.

lostandthedamned
07-03-2010, 09:56
Zavant

Basically a series of Sherlock Holmes type stories with Holmes played by an ex-sigmaritie priest who dabbles in alchemy and Watson being played by a halfling ex-thief. Also has many references to Carnacki the Ghost Finder.

Gordon Rennie manages to show Altdorf as a working city, with masses of flavor combined with classic detective writing.

Desert Rain
07-03-2010, 11:37
The Genevieve series are great, as are Darkblade and the Slayer series. Other than that I haven't read much warhammer fiction. Malekith was a good read though and I should really try to get my hands on Shadow King as well.

jthdotcom
07-03-2010, 14:24
My vote would be for Gotrek and Felix Omnibus's 1, 2, and 3

Malice&Mizery
07-03-2010, 14:47
Seems a lot of you have good taste.

I've only read Vampire Wars, Genevieve, Gotrek and Felix 1st omnibus, and Witch Finder.

So... I recommend those :)

Armond
07-03-2010, 15:11
Riders of the Dead... Enough said, written by Dan Abnett, that book is awesome!

I would also recommend Hammers of Ulric and Blackhearts! The characters in Blackhearts are pretty well done.

Lordsaradain
07-03-2010, 16:14
The Malus Darkblade books by Dan Abnett are my favorite.

Edit: And I would not recommend the Konard series or Vampire wars to anyone, I did not like them at all.

Asfaloth
07-03-2010, 16:21
Malus Darkblade and Gotrek & Felix are my favorites

vinny t
07-03-2010, 17:20
Well I'd have to say

1) Blackhearts - the characters are great, storyline very well thought out, and with a smattering of good humor

2) Malus Darkblade - very good book as well, Dark Elves are oh so interesting...

3) Gotrek and Felix - All the books are very similar but they're pretty amusing so probably worth it to read

Peregijn
08-03-2010, 10:58
Well I'd have to say

1) Blackhearts - the characters are great, storyline very well thought out, and with a smattering of good humor

2) Malus Darkblade - very good book as well, Dark Elves are oh so interesting...

3) Gotrek and Felix - All the books are very similar but they're pretty amusing so probably worth it to read

and i shall have to second this.

The Red Scourge
08-03-2010, 11:07
Only Warhammer Fantasy novel I've read and enjoyed was Genevieve - and don't worry about teenage angst, they're written way before the emo generation.

And unless you have extremely poor or downright abysmal taste, I'll warn you about things with 'Konrad' or ending up with the word '-slayer' in the title. Rumour has it that they were used as torture implements in Abu Ghraib :p

Hunter Rose
08-03-2010, 13:52
I really enjoy the Vampire Genevieve series and would recommend it to any fan of the setting. Each book gives you wonderful insight into Warhammer Fantasy through the eyes of Genevieve, who gets to experience many generations of events. There isn't a lot of 'vampirey' stuff in the novels at all, and none of them focus on her so much as the events she finds herself knee deep in.

Drongol
08-03-2010, 20:54
I really enjoy the Vampire Genevieve series and would recommend it to any fan of the setting. Each book gives you wonderful insight into Warhammer Fantasy through the eyes of Genevieve, who gets to experience many generations of events.

Sorry, but I'm going to have to disagree here.

The Genevieve series are generic vampire fantasy literature with a handful of Warhammer-y references thrown to try to keep them "kosher." In fact, if memory serves, the author admitted as much long, long ago.

Genevieve herself sticks out of the Warhammer background like a sore thumb and reeks of Mary Sue. Everyone loves her! Even the Emperor! And she drinks at a vampire bar! In the middle of Altdorf! And so on.

The books themselves aren't terrible for schlock vamporn, but they're not Warhammer books, if that makes sense Heck, they'd be a lot better suited for a fantasy equivalent to Dark Ages Vampire.

Now, that said...

The Gotrek and Felix series are bubblegum dungeon schlock, but they're still fun reads. Just don't go in there expecting literary greatness and you'll be okay.

The Age of Legends books just don't feel right to me, much like the Horus Heresy series. Some parts of the background I prefered to leave a mystery. I have flashbacks of realizing that Vader was a whiny jerkass kid, if you know what I mean.

I'm also not a huge fan of the Darkblade books. Just a little too "evulz" for me. Your mileage will vary, of course.

Werner's Witch Hunter books are fairly enjoyable and seem pretty accurate to the background of a witch hunter. I liked 'em, anyways.

Long story short, there's a lot more bad than good as far as the BL books go, but if you're not looking for great works of literature, you might stumble across something fun.

Satan
09-03-2010, 09:38
Sorry, but I'm going to have to disagree here.

The Genevieve series are generic vampire fantasy literature with a handful of Warhammer-y references thrown to try to keep them "kosher." In fact, if memory serves, the author admitted as much long, long ago.

Genevieve herself sticks out of the Warhammer background like a sore thumb and reeks of Mary Sue. Everyone loves her! Even the Emperor! And she drinks at a vampire bar! In the middle of Altdorf! And so on.

The books themselves aren't terrible for schlock vamporn, but they're not Warhammer books, if that makes sense Heck, they'd be a lot better suited for a fantasy equivalent to Dark Ages Vampire.

I agree with the above to the maximum extent. I really hate the Genevieve series. It reeks of generic fantasy and doesn't fit with the warhammer world at all. It's like reading Twilight to me. It's just... off and too complacent to have anything to do with the complexities of the established background. I mean, it's worse than the old inquisitor trilogy for 40k...

The Vampire Wars series give vampires in the warhammer world the treatment they deserve IMO.

I don't understand the negativity towards the Konrad series here. I thought it was well-written and it really gives a good old-school look at the warhammer world. What I especially like about it is that it's uncompromising in the way it portrays the bleak reality of life in the Warhammer world...

Neither are the Slayer series that bad, but they have lost their sense of purpose lately and I think they sorely need to regain it ASAP. I enjoy them for what they are, but they could be so much more, on that I agree. They should be the "Black Company" of the Warhammer world, but instead they're just the "hamster wheel" of it as of right now...

Aceski
09-03-2010, 13:23
HeldenHammer is pretty kool, more or less an action movie in book form starring sigmar.. Malus Darkblade is pretty awsome too

The boyz
09-03-2010, 13:45
I enjoyed the first Gotrek and Felix omnibus. I haven't read the second one yet. Riders of the Dead, I would recommend. I also liked the Florin and Lorenzo omnibus.

elvinltl
09-03-2010, 14:05
My all time favourite Quote...

Do unto others before others do unto you.

From Malus Darkblade series. Dark Elves are really wicked.

Classically Drained
09-03-2010, 14:16
Riders of the Dead is exquisitely done and one of my favourite bits of fantasy fiction overrall, let alone GW based stuff. If all future WFB IP were to go this way I'd be a loyal follower for life.

I can't remember the name of it at the moment (Which probably won't help you very much, hehe!) but there is a series of books about an Empire solider who is injured in battle with Chaos worshippers, and begins to mutate. He grows a little mouth where his wound was and starts getting drawn into secret societies and scrapes around the Empire, and concludes with him joining the army of Luthor Huss. It's great.

I know it was Gav Thorpe. I know he wrote that something "speared into the dark sky like a dark spear" in one of his books. Regardless, I thought the Claws of Chaos trilogy was awesome fun. Empire knight, converted to Chaos over a woman, chosen as a Champion, ascends to Daemonhood. Great stuff.

I liked Vampire Wars.... in parts.

In contrast to most, I like the newer Gotrek and Felix novels better. William King... not my favourite.

If you've never read any fantasy novels before though, my advice is for your first purchase to be The Laughter of Dark Gods. It's a reprint of short stories from the '80s and is well written. It also features a Chaos champion finding a plasma pistol or a laspistol or something, which in itself is worth a look!

Hope any of that was useful.

Grimthug
09-03-2010, 14:50
Another great read (IMHO) that no one has mentioned yet are "The Ambassador Chronicles" by GrahamMcNeil. It's an omnibus of two books "The Ambassador" and "Ursurn's Teeth". It is the story of a retired Empire General as the newly appointed Ambassador to Kislev so if you liked "Riders of the Dead" you should like this on as well.

It's some of Graham's earlier work and he has evolved as a writer since but it is an enjoyalbe yarn none the less.

Grimthug

Seneca75
09-03-2010, 15:40
The Konrad series is a nice read.

The book "blood for the blood god" is ok, but nothing really special.

But, in contradiction to all the Malus Darkblade lovers out there: When I read the first (and for me: only) book of the Darkblade series I almost stopped wanting to play a DE army. This is surely one of the worst books I ever read!

Cheers,
Sen

Jormi_Boced
09-03-2010, 16:00
I really enjoyed Grey Seer.

Armond
10-03-2010, 08:57
The Konrad series is a nice read.

The book "blood for the blood god" is ok, but nothing really special.

But, in contradiction to all the Malus Darkblade lovers out there: When I read the first (and for me: only) book of the Darkblade series I almost stopped wanting to play a DE army. This is surely one of the worst books I ever read!

Cheers,
Sen

I second you in some ways, I was not a fan of the Malus books for some reason... Maybe it was the way it was written, not quite sure. But I do get a feeling of disappointment for some reason.

EmperorNorton
10-03-2010, 12:47
But, in contradiction to all the Malus Darkblade lovers out there: When I read the first (and for me: only) book of the Darkblade series I almost stopped wanting to play a DE army. This is surely one of the worst books I ever read!

I second that as well.
I bought the omnibus months ago and had to force myself to finish the first book, all the time wondering why the series gets so much praise, hoping it would get better. It didn't. Haven't touched the omnibus since.

Shamutanti
10-03-2010, 13:35
Another one of these threads? Righty.

Abnett puts some occasionally good things on the page Fantasy wise, so he's worth a look at it.

King is, in my view, the undisputed Fantasy writer of GW, even though he's not been with the company for what feels like a bazillion years now. The quality of writers after King dips and varies so much it shows you I suppose how much either a) there's more of a drive for 40k fluff or b) Warhammer Fant is far harder to write 'well' about, like many over Fantasy books currently on the market.

There's not many other Fantasy stories that advance storylines/show character development/etc. - they're mostly hack n' slash, which the first 2 n' a half Gotrek n' Felix Omnibuses include, whilst showing the above also. From there the Dreaded Nathan Long takes over.

Long can't write good, engaging, character and story driven books. He's a failed script writer whose hitting back with dull and bland clique storylines.

McNeil is okay in the Fantasy world but I've tended to find some of his older stories a little bit of a struggle to read through at the best of times (e.g. Guardians of the Forest).

I wasn't a massive fan of C. L. Werner until I read Grey Seer and because I enjoyed King's G n' F so much the Seer book was like a cherry topping on a Bakewell tart.

Personally I prefer the older books that got discontinued, which isn't exactly helpful for you because obviously you can't buy them anymore :P You have to be very picky though with Fantasy because unlike (or less so) the 40k section, there's quite a few stinkers (Empire/Nagash Time of Legends come to mind here).

My advice would be look for Scott Lynch; The Lies of Locke Lamora, etc. It's not Fantasy but it shows you how good, modern/updated writing styles on a Fantasy world can exist and be a worthwhile investment of your time.

Crovax20
10-03-2010, 15:12
Malus Darkblade is worth it, and in my opinion the new novels about the empire, Reiksgaurd and Iron Company are enjoyable as well. But in the end I must say 40k seems to have a lot more awesomeness to it in the black library.

Jormi_Boced
10-03-2010, 15:31
Malus Darkblade is worth it, and in my opinion the new novels about the empire, Reiksgaurd and Iron Company are enjoyable as well. But in the end I must say 40k seems to have a lot more awesomeness to it in the black library.

I am reading thed first omnibus right now and am enjoying it.

Tokugawa100
10-03-2010, 19:07
OK after reading this thread I know people may disagree with me.

Blood for the Blood God

This was an excellent read, considering I find much of Black Liibrary's stuff hard to enjoy or continue on with.
Its an interesting take on the chaos tribes in the waste and each of the warring tribes is unique, from the plague worshipping horde that lives in a desert of mirriors or the tzeentch worshippers which live in a flying castle.

The book is mainly at its best when it talks of the tribes and their politics and their war, the story of the daenon stalking every warlord is also interesting.

The main character is a bit bland and towards the end as they move further into the wastes, well lets just say the story gets a little "chaotic".
It also has a terrible ending which is a little confusing and OTT.

But until then its still a good read.

Tales of the Old World

There are some fantastic short stories in this especially about the first half, towards the end the sotries seem to lack in quality.
From the peasant and the Brettonian Lord trying to save a village from a horde of skeletons, Lizardmen infesting a sea side Imperial city to the tales of the Norse fellow, the Elf, the Dwarf and the manling which are both comical, heroic and just very well done.

Gotrex and Felix
Just bought the first Omnibus, is a very well written and great read.
Only read 1 or 2 of the stories so far.

Sifal
10-03-2010, 23:50
I've read almost all of them so far except the recent ancient history sigmar/nagash ones which i wont touch with a barge pole. I'd recommend most of them and suggest you read them freely but avoid the following:

Guardians of the forest - bad bad ending

palace of the plague lord - pointless random group of 2d characters walk a long way, the end. (the rest of CL Werner's are good, especially witch hunter books)

Beasts in velvet - old and probably hard to find now but it was sloooooooooow

Reiksguard - because it starts as one novel and then half way through totally flips into a different one. a decent training procedural novel becomes a big silly fight where it's hard to see why the author went to the trouble of creating such good 3d characters.

Darkblade - couldn't finish the first one, it was poo.

Massacre in Marienburg - the first one (murder in marienburg) was good and this sequel isn't bad, if a little contrived. I would say avoid the second one though because it has a 'to be continued' ending but wont be continued. That is to say that the author David Bishop isn't completing the trilogy.

off the top of my head those are what i'd avoid and probably a few more that I can't remember (there's one with a ridiculous air-to-air battle between gyrocoptors and a skaven airship that was just unenjoyably silly)

Armond
11-03-2010, 08:57
People have said King is a good writer, but I am not impressed by his Space Wolves books or Gotrek and Felix. They were NOT interesting to me, and for some reason the way they were written just didn't appeal to me at all.

PrimeMinisterDavidCameron
11-03-2010, 08:58
Are there any novels on the level of the Lord of the Rings?

Worthy of becoming towering monuments of fiction for 100 years?

Odin
11-03-2010, 10:28
The wine of dreams.

Great book, from the perspective of someone who isn't looking for warporn. Everyone else will probably be bored to death by it.

Might check that out then, I'd much rather read novels set in the Warhammer World that shed new light on things outside the usual battle settings. Politics, intrigue, mystery... that sort of thing.

EmperorNorton
11-03-2010, 13:09
Are there any novels on the level of the Lord of the Rings?

Worthy of becoming towering monuments of fiction for 100 years?

Most certainly not.

Shamutanti
11-03-2010, 15:41
Depends if you rate LotR a fantastic novel because of what it did to Fantasy as we know it and how it opened up new worlds and experiences for people, or if you consider the actual writing ability to be dull and bland :P

There are some Black Library books that really send the direction of the universe horizontal with their approach and there are some that are awesome pieces of developed story construction (Legion comes to mind). Either way they at least develop (if awkwardly) our knowledge of the universes and give us insights into the worlds.

Which is what the LotR did for me and became pretty much the only reason I could continue reading it, because sometimes, I just don't **** a flying poo stick what one rock looks compared to another or how the trees were large and varied in their shadings of green.

Tokugawa100
11-03-2010, 18:54
Are there any novels on the level of the Lord of the Rings?

Worthy of becoming towering monuments of fiction for 100 years?

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahahah hahahahahahahahhahahahahahahhahahahahahahahhahahah ahahahahhahahahahahahahahha.....

"Oh my"

No.:eyebrows:;)

PrimeMinisterDavidCameron
12-03-2010, 18:42
I thought it was a fair question.

I don't understand why Novels based off Warhammer or 40k can't aspire to live up to the classics of fiction in both science fiction and fantasy. Instead of just war porn they could explore philosophy, the human experience and other details that made books like "Do Andriods Dream of Electric Sheep", "The Demolished Man" and the Asimov Foundation series great.

Also, if some of the Warhammer Fantasy novels are "Timeless" than I'm sure they will also sell well.

Armond
12-03-2010, 19:07
I haven't found a book published by the Black Library that could be held at the same regard as Lord of the Rings.

I find Gaunt's Ghosts books are exceptionally well done and enjoyable to read, so I would also recommend those. I am currently reading A Thousand Sons by Graham McNeill, and so far it has my attention. Not a bad read at all, a little slow in some spots, but overall it tells an interesting story.

EmperorNorton
12-03-2010, 20:47
I don't understand why Novels based off Warhammer or 40k can't aspire to live up to the classics of fiction in both science fiction and fantasy.

There isn't an inherent reason that prevents this.
They just don't have writers with enough talent.

Condottiere
13-03-2010, 10:51
The writers are also constrained in what they are permitted to present in their works. But I suspect the compensation wouldn't attract the best talents.

Greymarch
14-03-2010, 16:52
Really the Gotrek & Felix novels would probably be the best place to start because each one gives you a different slice of the Warhammer world. A good intro in my opinion. Plus you get good skaven action fairly quick! ;)

On that note I quite enjoyed Grey Seer, and hope that there will be more in the "Thanquol and Boneripper" series.

I've only read some of the free previews in the backs of other books for Genieveue, but even from that I can tell that it seems like the kind of fantasy schlock that TSR was churning out for Forgotten Realms back in the day. Sorry!

Jormi_Boced
14-03-2010, 23:14
On that note I quite enjoyed Grey Seer, and hope that there will be more in the "Thanquol and Boneripper" series.


There is going to be one and they are going to Lustria in the next book.