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View Full Version : Do you need to read the Horus Heresy Series in order to understand whats happening?



Koryphaus
28-05-2008, 13:54
Hey guys

Pretty self explanatory thread really, though I don't know if this is the right place for it?

Its just that I'm pretty mad about the Word Bearers, and with the new HH book due for release shortly (Into the Abyss), I want to read it.

However, being a uni student and all that means my free time is limited, so I was wondering if there is any requirement to read the HH series in order (say the way the Wheel of Time requires it).

I'm thinking, since most of the books focus on fairly seperate events over the course of the Heresy that this won't be required?

I do know a fair bit about the "traditional" events of the Heresy, and I've picked up bits here and there from the series, mainly about Fulgrim and Omegon.

Creeping_Death
28-05-2008, 13:57
Well the first 3 or 4 books would need to be read in order to understand the story, after that the rest have been fairly stand alone, filling in background material. Everything I've heard about the up coming book however seems to indicate it continues the overall story of the Heresy.

If you are already familiar with the story of the Horus Heresy from, say, the CSM codex then you will probably be able to read it on its own, otherwise pick up the first 3 books.

Plus, there is a little bit of Word Bearers manipulation going on in the background of them anyway that you might enjoy...

Tonberry
28-05-2008, 13:59
You don't need to have read the other books in order to enjoy it, but I would recommend ti because they're bloody good books :)

Stezerok
28-05-2008, 14:01
well that is an interesting question now that I think about it. There is a lot of overlap in the books, and where they do overlap they make reference to the others. I would say if you want to get the full context, reading all of the books in some semblance of order would be best, but I think reading just the one could be fine... If it's about Word Bearers, then it might be more of a prequel to the series (Erebus was the one who got Horus started down the path...) so if Into the Abyss is about the Word Bearers its probably fine as a stand alone.

Btw, I do believe this would be best under the Background section, but I could be mistaken. I hope this helps!

Good Hunting,
-Stezerok

P.S. actually, how many HH books are there now? I count Horus Rising, Dark Gods, Galaxy in Flames, Flight of the Eisenstein, Fulgrim, Legion, and now Into the Abyss... Am I missing any?

Creeping_Death
28-05-2008, 14:06
If it's about Word Bearers, then it might be more of a prequel to the series (Erebus was the one who got Horus started down the path...) so if Into the Abyss is about the Word Bearers its probably fine as a stand alone.


Judging by the cover art its about the battle between the Word Bearers and Ultramarines at Calth.

Synopsis from amazon.co.uk

"Now that news of Horus' treachery is in the open, a time of testing has come. Some Legions have already declared their allegiance to the Warmaster, while the loyalty of others lies firmly with the Emperor. As Horus deploys his forces, loyalist Astartes learn that a massive Wordbearers fleet is heading to Ultramar, home of the Ultramarines. Unless they can intercept and destroy it, the Ultramarines may suffer a blow from which they will never recover."

Yup, continuation of the main story it is. About time, I was personally getting tired of the one of random stories.

Edit:Stezerok, you forgot Descent of Angels. Legion was the 7th, then Battle for the Abyss and Mechanicum by christmas bringing the total then to 9

EVIL INC
28-05-2008, 14:14
I have played the game for about 30 years and the HH books just came out in the last few.
You can pick enough up through reguler fluff in white dwarf, codex, and so forth to know the overall story. When it comes down to it though, all you REALLY need to know is which models to shoot and assault and utterly destroy (figuratively speaking of course).

Stezerok
28-05-2008, 14:20
Edit:Stezerok, you forgot Descent of Angels. Legion was the 7th, then Battle for the Abyss and Mechanicum by christmas bringing the total then to 9

ah I see... so I am a fair distance behind then lol. Well I would like something describing what happened with Erebus, all I've heard is that the primarch of the Word Bearers was whining because the Emperor chastised him for being too brutal on humans that didn't believe in the God-Emperor or something to that effect...

Good Hunting,
-Stezerok

Creeping_Death
28-05-2008, 14:24
I agree, a novel about Erebus' corruption and him setting up cults throughout the legions would make for an interesting novel. However, I am glad to see they are finally continuing the storyline, it was beginning to feel like a major cash in...

Still, in saying that I'm sure once the HH novels have finished the main storyline we'll probably get an onslaught of background novels under the same name to make GW a few more quid.

LokkoRex
28-05-2008, 15:10
i really want to see a novel each on the iron warriors, raven guard, night lords and thousand sons.

BTW there is a thousand son marine on the cover of Battle for the Abyss, so thousand sons maybe showing up inside?

electricwolf
28-05-2008, 15:20
Where do you live?

I have read all but one of the HH novels(i'm reading Fulgrim now) and they are great books.

I would be willing to loan my copies to you on the condition that they don't get damaged and i get them back.

pookie
28-05-2008, 15:51
However, being a uni student and all that means my free time is limited, so I was wondering if there is any requirement to read the HH series in order (say the way the Wheel of Time requires it).

your not a very good student are you :D

only read the HH books if your intrested in that part of the 40kHistory, it may have a impact on the word Bearers as Erebus pops up in the first three, and into the Abbyss maybe a good read for you, but i dont think you 'have to' read them.

Creeping_Death
28-05-2008, 15:58
i really want to see a novel each on the iron warriors, raven guard, night lords and thousand sons.

BTW there is a thousand son marine on the cover of Battle for the Abyss, so thousand sons maybe showing up inside?

Where do you see a thousand son? I'm pretty sure thats an ultramarine (check its shoulder pad), and we know Battle for the Abyss is about the Word Bearers being sent to destroy the ultramarines at Calth.

If Thousands sons do get a book, it would probably be about the burning of Prospero by the Space Wolves, however seeing as Mechanicum probably is about the Sons of Horus, Death Guard, Emperors Children, and World Eaters preparing to strike at Mars I don't see how they could fit it into the story in a linear order.

pookie
28-05-2008, 16:04
Where do you see a thousand son? I'm pretty sure thats an ultramarine (check its shoulder pad), and we know Battle for the Abyss is about the Word Bearers being sent to destroy the ultramarines at Calth.

If Thousands sons do get a book, it would probably be about the burning of Prospero by the Space Wolves, however seeing as Mechanicum probably is about the Sons of Horus, Death Guard, Emperors Children, and World Eaters preparing to strike at Mars I don't see how they could fit it into the story in a linear order.

unless its changed since i last looked, there was a TS on the cover, aiding a UM against the WB's

BrianC
28-05-2008, 16:17
You don't need to have read the other books in order to enjoy it, but I would recommend ti because they're bloody good books :)Are they well written, or do they come across like a Dan Brown "master piece"? I'm in two minds as to trying the series but I don't have much reading time to waste time on a book that isn't well writen and going to engage me. I guess I'm a book snob...

Some feedback onto their quality would be much appreciated.

Chem-Dog
28-05-2008, 16:37
Are they well written, or do they come across like a Dan Brown "master piece"? I'm in two minds as to trying the series but I don't have much reading time to waste time on a book that isn't well writen and going to engage me. I guess I'm a book snob...

Some feedback onto their quality would be much appreciated.

Opinions on the quality of writing are divided (Opinions are like A**holes, everyone's got one and they all stink ;)). I'd say read Horus Rising and see how you feel about it after that. I really enjoy the series, personal high points of the series so far are Horus Rising and Legion the only book I had any REAL trouble reading is Decent of Angels which really felt like the start of it's own series as it failed to answer any questions about the Dark Angels' particular issues regarding the Horus Heresy and left you feeling like Lion 'El Johnson is just a big stroppy cow.

Koryphaus
28-05-2008, 17:55
Where do you live?

University of Newcastle, Australia (God's own backyard).


your not a very good student are you :D

I do my best, but in between study, warseer, parties, sport, parties, pub nights, parties, cramming for exams... :D

Lordsaradain
28-05-2008, 18:01
Descent of Angels is totally stand alone, that book can pretty much be read without reading any others, as it essentially has very little to do with the Horus Heresy, none of the other legionsare mentioned, and the events take place quite abit of time before the heresy.