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Thor665
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PostSubject: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Fri Sep 02 2011, 22:04

I've only read two DE depictions from BL.

Warrior Coven: The DE raid a Craftworld, and in this epic battle of Eldar versus Dark Eldar for the fate of Eldar souls and featuring a duel in an arena of Commoragh with Lelith...it actually stars Sphees Mahreens! Because, y'know, the Eldar are going to invite them onto their Craftworld to fight the Dark Eldar...yes!

They're Deathwatch. I think there's like six of them. They pretty much beat up Commoragh as I recollect. It does feature Hellions, Beastmasters, Warp Beasts, Wyches, Warriors, Reavers, a Talos, Lelith, and other goodies, which were nice to see. But the author mostly left me cold, and the Marines were, pretty much, interchangeable in attitude. There was a bit of Mantis Warrior tension, and Blood Raven chitter chatter, but that was about it. Mostly I'd say give it a pass, I'm not sure if the below mentioned Blood Gorgon thing was worse...but I certainly was depressed by how they portrayed the DE.

Tales of Heresy - there's a short story with some Space Wolves stuck on a planet versus some DE raiders. I'll admit I'm actually a huge fan of this one as I'm a huge SPace Wolf fan as well (1/4 Norwegian, actual name is Thor, I'm obligated). But this one features a Haem being made to look a bit like an idiot puss...sorry Haem lovers. But other than that, it does do a nice feature of DE tech (giant planet spike/fortresses) has them "harvesting" a planet for terror, and features an Archon who rolls in sporting a shadowfield and hell mask and basically makes some wolf pups wet themselves as he chumps out a few Marine elite in a very nice nod to the combat abilities of an Archon, awesome to see. Plus the story itself is pretty solid for what the Wolves are up to (certainly better than the one featuring Dark Angels in "I'm amazed this guy is a combat veteran and seasoned commander considering he's a wuss, whines all the time, and doesn't spot obvious betrayal screaming in his face...and also has no control of his men or support forces")

I just saw some good things about Fire Drake, and some negatives about Gorgon. Does anyone else have pocket reviews and/or suggestions for good DE fluff? I know not everything can be Torturer's Tale, but I'm allowed to wish it was Wink
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Fri Sep 02 2011, 23:50

Fear the Alien had a really 2 good DE short stories, and one was written from an Archon's point of view.

Also I want to read path of the renegade... but we will have to see how good it is Razz

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Sat Sep 03 2011, 00:41

Hmmm, I'd always sort of thought that book was just going to be full of Imperium chest thumping. Thanks for the lead!

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Sat Sep 03 2011, 06:06

I could not finish Fire Drake. The DE element may be fine, but I just lost interest in reading the rest of the Muh-reen book and thus never got to it.

Fear the Alien was quite good.
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Sat Sep 03 2011, 06:27

Was it the Marines, or just a weak writer that scared you off of Fire Drake? I do sometimes find reading BL stuff a chore due to questionable author skill (or if it's Abnett - maybe I'm picky, but he's totally the Stephen King of Black Library)

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Sat Sep 03 2011, 07:52

A bit of both. I have absolutely no interest in Muh-reenz, but as I mentioned in my review of Path of the Seer in another thread, I also find most 40K fiction annoying to read because of the authors' styles. I certainly couldn't write any better, but still ..........

If you want some good military Sci-Fi for inspiration, go down to your friendly local library and borrow "Warriors", an excellent collection of short stories by many terrific authors, and edited by George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois. If the library doesn't have it, ask them to get it for you, or buy it yourself. You won't be disappointed.
http://www.amazon.com/Warriors-George-R-R-Martin/dp/0765320487

Not only does it have great military sci-fi of all kinds, to me it also has the best DE fiction that never was. "The Scroll", by David Ball, is the extremely entertaining tale of a 17th-century French seige engineer who is captured by the sociopathic Sultan of Morocco after his ship is sunk. His life, and those of his fellow slaves, are then subject to the whims of this sultan as they are forced to work on the construction of the city Meknes.

It is an utterly grim but beautifully written story of hope and betrayal, and mindless violence, as these slaves are toyed with by their captor. Change the setting and it's perfect for DE.
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Wed Sep 21 2011, 15:45

Although it has 'Space Marines, FRAK YEAH!' out the wazoo, Nightbringer has pretty good character bits about Dark Eldar.

(Minor) SPOILERS:
A significant part of the plot involves a linguist understanding how the Dark Eldar use language and the relationship between a human agent and the Archon he serves.

Unfortunately, the Dark Eldar do die like punks and the villain role is then filled by the titular Star God, but you probably could guess that would happen.
END SPOILERS

By curious coincidence, the book seems to feature a Lhamaean before they were even an idea.

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Wed Sep 21 2011, 18:25

That's kind of tempting, I may lurk that one on near the bottom of my desire pile - I think i'm gunning for Fear the Alien next after I work through the current HH books I'm reading.

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Wed Sep 21 2011, 18:48

There is also the horrid Souldrinkers book that had DE in it (dont remember the name, I read the omnibus) but its garbage and involves Slanneshi Dark Eldar... and who in their right mind would think THAT would ever happen ;P

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Wed Sep 21 2011, 19:46

@Thor665 wrote:
(or if it's Abnett - maybe I'm picky, but he's totally the Stephen King of Black Library)
Agreed, though at the end of Sabbat Martyr
Spoiler:
 

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Sep 22 2011, 00:04

@Shadows Revenge wrote:
There is also the horrid Souldrinkers book that had DE in it (dont remember the name, I read the omnibus) but its garbage and involves Slanneshi Dark Eldar... and who in their right mind would think THAT would ever happen ;P

Sounds to me like whoever wrote the book knew absolutely nothing about DE and their extreme fear of slanesh.

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Sep 22 2011, 01:20

Don't forget Midnight on the Street of Knives, an eBook by The Black Library that came out in June, by Andy Chambers. Seems a steal at £1.50, I haven't read it though there is a review a few threads down.

Synopsis by Black Library wrote:
Xagor is on an errand for his haemonculus master, the delivery of a thoroughly unimportant package and some tremendously important news. A Dysjunction is coming, and Commorragh will be shaken to its very foundations. As Xagor travels the dangerous streets of the dark city, he is sure he is being followed.

Kharbyr has been sent to capture a package. Hunting the servant of a twisted haemonculus through the warrens of Commorragh, he is eager to slip his knife between his prey’s ribs and watch the life flee from him. But the servant is behaving oddly, and Kharbyr suspects that there is more to the other eldar’s task than a simple delivery.

A game of cat and mouse can lead to anything. Especially at midnight on the Street of Knives.

A brand new, never-before published story from author Andy Chambers

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Sep 22 2011, 14:40

@Judgex83 wrote:
@Shadows Revenge wrote:
There is also the horrid Souldrinkers book that had DE in it (dont remember the name, I read the omnibus) but its garbage and involves Slanneshi Dark Eldar... and who in their right mind would think THAT would ever happen ;P

Sounds to me like whoever wrote the book knew absolutely nothing about DE and their extreme fear of slanesh.

Well Im sure there are some DE out there that serve Slannesh, the same way as there are Chaos Eldar out there (yah, I know shocker, but they do exsist, just not in great numbers) Its just that they wouldnt have access to stuff like Incubi, or even a steady supply of weaponry (unless they took a DE forge, but it would have to be some place other than Commagorah, cause Vect would of killed them along time ago). Thats what hurt me the most from that book. He had a bunch of incubi bodyguards, as well as plenty of well supplied troops (enough to hold of an IG army in full scale combat for a couple of days, ofc with the help of daemons, but still)
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Fri Sep 23 2011, 05:56

To be fair, the grand insanity and scale of the plan was very Dark Eldar. Just not the plan itself.

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Tue Oct 04 2011, 03:00

Then there was the 2nd book in the Word Bearers trilogy ( Dark Disciple ) that had the Dark Eldar as foils to the Word Bearers... even had some decent scenes of torture in a Haemonculi's lab. And these Dark Eldar REALLY feared Slaanesh and it's minions...

(Also had Nids and IG... a real chock full of armies book)
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Tue Oct 04 2011, 13:13

@Thor665 wrote:
I do sometimes find reading BL stuff a chore due to questionable author skill (or if it's Abnett - maybe I'm picky, but he's totally the Stephen King of Black Library)

In terms of questionable author skill, Gav Thorpe's first Last Chancers book 13th Legion was so uninspired I didn't bother with the second. The characters were bland and predictable, and not in the fun, tongue in cheek Dirty Dozen/Kelly's Heroes way the unit was obviously intended to be. Completely missed the mark.

The Eisenhorn trilogy by Abnett is good, I liked that. Got bored with Gaunts Ghosts though, especially when he started killing people I liked wholesale. I know it's war and everything, and you have to expect characters to die, but he just didn't have any others stepping up to fill their places. Also, Triumff, one of his none Black Library publications, is rubbish. Just a massive Discworld rip-off from start to finish, with bits of Blackadder and dodgy steampunk thrown in. Eugh.

I'm waiting for the first Ciaphas Cain omnibus to arrive, I think I'll enjoy a lighter take on 40k! Even if I don't, it was £3.50 new on Amazon. Win!

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Oct 06 2011, 10:15

@Mr Believer wrote:
Also, Triumff, one of his none Black Library publications, is rubbish. Just a massive Discworld rip-off from start to finish, with bits of Blackadder and dodgy steampunk thrown in. Eugh.

Oh I am so very, very pleased that someone else noticed that! I was also reminded of Nikolai Dante from the 2000AD set. Mr. Abnett has fallen down my list of authors recently, mainly since Prospero Burns. What a terrible book. Even worse than Descent of Angels, previously my least-favoured Horus Heresy novel.

As for Warrior Coven, that utter tripe by C.S. Goto (the Uwe Boll of Black Library), the less said the better.

I highly recommend Mistress Baeda's Gift, the Archon story in Fear The Alien, and for crying out loud, please read Relentless by Richard Williams. That book gets so overlooked because the protagonists are the Imperial Navy, noone mentions the fact that there's a freakin' Dark Eldar ship in there, including a megalomaniacal archon complete with scheming subordinates! Add to that the fact that it has awesome political intrigue and is a nice take on one of the less popular aspects of the 40K universe and you've got a corker of a book. Very Happy

Lastly I recommend Firedrake - yes, it's a book about Salamanders. Salamanders that go to Commorragh. And not just ANY Comorragh - the new and improved super-shiny 2010 Codex Comorragh! See the Dysjunction! Fear the Mandrakes! Goggle at the Haemonculi! RUN FROM THE WYCHES! Fair warning, Nick Kyme's writing can be somewhat plodding and wordy, but it picks up and he writes rather good shady characters. Rumours abound that the next book, Nocturne, will continue the Dark Eldar trend...

Good luck in your quest!

Raucir

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Oct 13 2011, 16:00

The worst thing about Triumff was the feeling of betrayal I felt at the end, not because of Abnett letting me down though - there was a praising comment on the front from Mike Carey, which convinced me to get it. When I finished the book, I put it down, looked across at my nearly complete collection of the volumes of Lucifer and thought "You lied Mike. How could you lie like that?"

I'm partway through the first Ciaphas Cain omnibus now, which is very good, and he's made a number of references to fighting Eldar and their dark kin. I don't know if this will be covered, but effort seems to be being made to get Cain to fight everything in the 40k universe, which I'm liking a lot. Makes a big change from Abnett having everyone fight Chaos all the flipping time.


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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Oct 13 2011, 18:20

Cain has yet to cross swords with either flavor of Eldar to my awareness, and I've read everything of his (even the audio book) except for Emperor's Finest.

He has wracked up some nice meetings/dust ups with other stuff though - Crons, Nids, Chaos, Orks, Tau, Sisters, Space Marines, Mechanicum, Inquisition, Chaos Daemons/Marines, and, of course, IG. Actually looks like Eldar are the only thing he hasn't had an in-book dealing with thus far, we've gotta be due.

Also, Sulla, we need more Sulla in the books - and excerpts from her book too.

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Oct 13 2011, 18:41

Aren't there Deldar and a curious Urien rakarth/Archon in the Ultramarines omnibus? I seem to rember a scene where they breach a Haemonculus lair and find someone alive, but, cut into pieces hanging on meat hooks still breathing and groaning. You have to put up with Marines though, and a heavy political plot as far as I've read so far
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Thu Oct 13 2011, 19:08

@Thor665 wrote:
Also, Sulla, we need more Sulla in the books - and excerpts from her book too.

...please tell me that was sarcasm.

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Fri Oct 14 2011, 11:09

I like how the different extracts from supposed other works intersperse the main narrative and vary the tone. I'm only nearly done on the first novel, so have only had one Sulla extract, which would not have worked half as well without the highly critical footnotes, which made me smile.

I think a lot of Black Library authors prefer to write about Chaos because when you start putting in other races it can almost look like some sort of fan service. It's tricky to write about really truly evil beings as well when you think of the age range that the hobby attracts - a proper Dark Eldar novel, for example, should probably read like a cross between American Psycho and Dracula, but you run the risk of warping fragile little minds!

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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Fri Oct 14 2011, 16:04

@Raucir Lustingclaw wrote:
@Thor665 wrote:
Also, Sulla, we need more Sulla in the books - and excerpts from her book too.

...please tell me that was sarcasm.
You're kidding, right? She is one of the most perfect foils to Cain in the entire series.
She's *exactly* the type of hero you see in all the GW IG fluff (seriously, leading a tank while having the hatch open to scream orders?) and to have her interact with the more sensible and overtly cowardly Cain who she idolizes and believes is just as fanatical as her is always good for a laugh.

Plus, that one extract of hers - one of the funniest moments in the whole series in my opinion.
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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Sat Oct 15 2011, 01:31

Come on, those extracts from Like A Phoenix From The Flames? Utter drivel! I can see why Sandy wrote them in, but augh, they make my stomach twist.

Alright, I'll concede she's a good "heroic" counterpart to Cain, but... but... No, alright, yes, she is. But we don't need any more of her. If anything we need more Amberley! Now there's a character I can sink my teeth into.

Ooh, completely un-DE-related as far as I'm aware, but on the subject of Cain, did you get a chance to pick up Dead In The Water? I'm looking forward to that.


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PostSubject: Re: BL: Looking for recommendations on books featuring DE.   Sat Oct 15 2011, 04:48

Your disrespect for Sulla is duly noted, and you shall be properly disciplined later.
I'll agree with Amberly, they do need more of her in the books...more Sulla too Wink

I did get Dead In The Water, my personal take was...meh. Maybe I'm just not an audio book type of guy, it felt more like about a two chapter short story than anything else, and Cain's voice was not what I imagined it to be. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't meaty enough for me to take pleasure in - sort of like the Chinese Food of literary achievements if you will - tasted great, but an hour later I'm hungry again.

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