book · miniatures.

The Coolest Notebooks!

As some of you know, I indulge occasionally in Live Action Role Play. With the pandemic easing off, we’ll soon be allowed back out in the field again. Time to shed the weight, get fit again and get running about in the woods, be it in Post Apocalyptic Style, or High Fantasy. Last weekend was LarpCon – albeit in a different form. Outside in the sunshine and ticketed so as not to overcrowd. There were plenty of traders, plenty of hand sanitizer and lots of seeing old friends again, and meeting new ones.

I did manage to pick up a few things, but my favourite purchase was a hand bound book in green leather and gold metal. Anyone who knows me, knows I love notebooks and this one just had to be mine! It is far too heavy to carry around as a spell book, but I had to have it anyway.

The lady who made it was a lovely person too. She makes all her books by hand, which is quite a skill, and I happened to catch sight of some of her calligraphy too, which was awe inspiring. She has other glorious notebook for sale – some of which I have pictured here, and she can be found on Facebook here:

https://www.facebook.com/tonilea.marris

Or send her an email t.l.marris01@gmail.com

Here are some of the books she had made lately, which are currently for sale. You’ll have to get in touch with her to find out prices, but please, please do. They are wonderful creations!

miniatures.

Review: Primogenitor – Josh Reynolds

Seeing how I shall very soon be painting the miniature of Fabius Bile, I thought it was about time I listened to the story. Many people have recommended it to me, so I got the book on Audible and listened to it while I was painting. Here are my thoughts:

The premise of the book is pretty simple. An old apprentice of Fabius Bile’s returns to him with a proposition to help another warband take a not-too-well defended Eldar Craftworld. Seeking new samples and some delicious spirit-stones, Bile agrees and chaos ensues on the way to do so. Add in somem Harlequins and you get a twisty, turvy plot that it a pleasure to read.

The characters within the novel are amazing. As with all chaos, none of them truly like one another. There is plenty of back-stabbing and intrege to go around, though some are more inclined to do so than others. The main protagonist, Oleander Ko, is a former member of the Emperor’s Children but his excesses are not so extreme as to become tiresome. He is witty, amusing and not above singing the odd song here and there. Tzimeskes – an Iron Warror with a preference for machinary – is perhaps the sassiest, mute character I have ever read about. Without uttering a word, he manages to give as good as he gets. That is a credit to the author’s characterisation and writing skills. There are other characters that deserve mention too: The Word Bearer Prisoner, the World Eater apothecary and Bile himself of course – all of them are brought to life well and are not carbon copies of one another either.

I want to give a special mention to the Kakaphonie (noise marines) too. The reminded me very much of the Raptors from the Night Lord trilogy. Lucoryphus and his band of nutters kept to themselves in much the same way, until they were needed to do something bonkers. The noise marines proved themselves every bit as insane – and useful – in the story and they were one of my favourite events. Butcher Bird – a gunship – comes a close second.

Some of the scenery within the book is delightfully well written. At one point, Bile and Co have to go to a market and the description allows the reader to picture that place perfectly. I want to go there – or at least make a diorama of sorts displaying it. The battle description is every bit as interesting. I didn’t find it tedious or too lengthy either as I have with some novels in the past. Every word did its job and did it well. There are some exceptionally well written metaphors within the pages of this book as well.

This tale is definitely worth reading, I thoroughly enjoyed the listen and I am eager to listen to the next part of the tale, if only to find out what wonderously disgusting things the Primogenitor does next!

book review · miniatures.

Review: Revenant Crusade – Darius Hinks

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Such a calm and collected Space Marine he is…

It did not take me long to chew through this novel – this is a good thing. A very good thing. I picked it up at the Warhammer Open Day and have now finished it, which for me, is good timing. There were a few late nights involved…

So, what’s good about this book?

It’s the second of a trilogy (maybe more I am not Black Library and for once I am fairly up to date with publications). Usually, when it comes to the middle book, they can be a bit slower and filled with more ‘filler’ material. Not so in this case. The synopsis is that Mephiston’s psychic abilities are being stifled by something and in order to find that oh so nasty daemon mentioned in book one, he needs to get that sorted out. Aparrently, it is a bit hard to track a daemon when you can’t ‘see’ it. Who knew. Cut to a planet occupied by some bonkers Necrons and you can probably guess what happens, at least to some extent.

Why was this book good? It has more of the Rhacelus-Mephiston-Antros dynamic which was so good in the first one. The relationship is explored further, pushed further and we learn some of the history there as well. It is gloriously well written, emotive (there might have been tears) and heartwarming in many places. No point is over laboured, but nor is it skimmed. It is well balanced and shows good character development throughout.

It also has crazy Necrons. I confess to not knowing a great deal about these xenos, and still don’t but what I learned, I really liked. It explores an old dynasty and how having a metal body does not always protect the mind! It was great to see how an ‘outsider’ Necron viewed those he had been sent to help. That said, I did wonder if they were a bit too human. I don’t know much about them though, so that might be just me not knowing things!

Another parallel I want to mention is that Mephiston, at one point, is bothered by the dead. Ghosts scream at him while he is trying to do tasks and it becomes quite the distraction. I was reminded how another Space Marine has similar problems with being screamed at *cough Abaddon* and wonder if that was intentional or not.

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Just another day at the office…

Anyway, to bring the review to a close. Read this book, its quick paced, full of interested characters and details and brings to life some less than familiar aspects of the Warhammer 40k universe.

miniatures.

Book Review: Void Stalker – Aaron Dembski Bowden

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading these novels and the last one was no different to the last in that factor. It was a whirlwind of a read with some definite high points. I don’t want to spoil any of the novel, and you should definitely go and read this for yourselves. However, here are some of the high points:

Uzas – The Night Lord struggling with Khorne comes through with some excellent insight and character development.

Lucoryphus risking his butt to save a tech adept on the outside of the ship.

Cyrion’s sharp wit and one line quips are as good as ever.

Variel being his glorious self.

Talos trying to be something he isn’t and not doing a bad job of it.

The writing is spot on as always, which made the reading a pleasure. The development of the characters and setting is engaging and of course the world setting is very familiar too. The last part of the book is tough on the feels but the ending is worth it.

Give this one a read, the entire series is great!