Fell times have come to the galaxy. Cadia has fallen, destroyed by the onslaught of Chaos. A Great Rift in the warp has opened, and from its depths spew daemons and the horrors of Old Night. But all hope is not lost…. A hero, long absent, has returned, and with him comes the wrath of the Ultramarines reborn.
Roboute Guilliman has arisen to lead the Imperium out of darkness on a crusade the likes of which has not been seen since the fabled days of the Emperor. But never before have the forces of Ruin amassed in such numbers, and nowhere is safe from despoliation. From the dreaded Scourge Stars come the hordes of the Plaguefather, Lord Nurgle, and their pustulent eye is fixed on Macragge. As the Indomitas Crusade draws to an end, Guilliman races to Ultramar and a confrontation with the Death Guard.
Author: Guy Haley
Narrator: John Banks
Length: 12hrs 44 mins
Publisher: Black Library
Audio Release Date: 31/12/17
My Rating of ‘Dark Imperium’: 4 out of 5
Dark Imperium, for me, is an absolutely fantastic book for those who are looking at getting back into the Black Library books but don’t want to be massively confused. It gives you scenes from the Horus Heresy as a sort of prologue and then brings you into the present day Imperium for the rest of the book.
The underlying plot is Roboute Guilliman trying to take the Imperium by the scruff of the neck and turn it into a body that the Emperor, himself and his fallen brothers would have recognised and been proud of. The main plotline sees him trying to thwart the nefarious plans of his chaotic brother Mortarion, Primarch of the Death Guard and favoured champion of the Lord of Decay (Nurgle).
Dark Imperium also sees the introduction of a new form of Space Marine (The Primaris Space Marine). I have read several reviews where the main negative is that Dark Imperium feels like they are ‘advertising the Primaris Space Marines’. My main negative of the book is that people with the narrow-minded view that only people who are clued up on the current ins and outs of the franchise actually read the book. What’s worse, these same people are allowed to comment on the book. I have been away from the Warhammer 40k universe for a long time and have no clue what a Primaris Space Marine is. Thankfully there’s this book called Dark Imperium that tells me what they are and why they were created. Sadly there is a horde of people that assume everyone knows everything about the 40k universe.
I had never read anything by Guy Haley before and am glad to have had the chance now. He is a talented writer who seems to have a firm grasp on his subject and excels at telling a good story. It translated beautifully into audio and I’m almost a little sad that I have an advanced copy of the next book instead of waiting for the next audio to be released.
My main negative to the book is that it seemed to end right where I thought a lot more was going to happen. Obviously, this is to set up for the second book (which it has done well as I am looking forward to getting stuck into it).
As I mentioned earlier, Dark Imperium has a bit of everything as far as past and present are concerned. It also has numerous viewpoints (Space Marines, humans, Chaos, daemons) all of that adds to a wonderful overview of a very dark universe. One might almost be tempted to say a grim and dark far future … It is those varied viewpoints and time periods that really made Dark Imperium a success for me. That and it was a good book to ease me back in to a universe I don’t remember all too well.