Of all the Emperor’s immortal sons, the primarchs, it is Konrad Curze whose legend is the darkest. Born in the shadows of Nostramo, a world of murderers, thieves and worse, is it any surprise that he became the figure of dread known only as the Night Haunter? Heed now the tragic story of the creature Konrad Curze, master of the Night Lords Legion, of how he became a monster and a weapon of terror. He who once served the Imperium saw the truth in a maddening universe and the hypocrisy of a loveless father, and embraced the only thing that made any sense – darkness. From the blood-soaked gutters of his hiveworld upbringing, to the last days of his ill-fated existence, Curze is a primarch like no other and his tale is one to chill the very bone…
Author: Guy Haley
Publisher: The Black Library
Release Date: 10/09/2019
Page Count: 208
My Chosen Format: Kindle
My Rating for ‘Konrad Curze: Night Haunter’: 5 out of 5
I received a copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
The most recent Primarch novel I had read was ‘Angron: Slave of Nuceria’. Whilst I enjoyed it, I can’t help but feel that my rating of four out of five might have been a little too generous. That is entirely the fault of Konrad Curze. This novel was what Slave of Nuceria could have been but fell incredibly far short of.
The best way to describe it is ‘an insane novel that is all over the place … yet works all the better for it’. The novel has two settings. The first being the present day where Konrad awaits the arrival of the assassin he has foresaw, eager to let his demise play out as his foresight has shown him. Of course, waiting for one’s death must be terribly boring, So Konrad passes the time by having a raving mad discussion with a corpse-dummy he has made up to look like his father. Absolutely bonkers, right? Yep, but insanity is, sadly, one of the many traits that Konrad has in abundance.
The other time period is basically random parts of Kondrad’s past that he feels have all served to make him the man/demi-god/Primarch/beast that he is today. Through these parts of history we see the people Konrad interacted with (poor, poor people). We are shown his origins on Nostramo from his humble beginnings of a Batman-style vigilante … well, if Batman were a thousand times darker than he is. The primarch’s entire life up until the point at which he currently tells his tale is shown through these past sequences.
Normally, I am not one for flashbacks. So the thought of an entire novel of flashbacks (seemingly randomly thrown together no less) was a little off-putting to me. My love of the Night Lords history and the urge to know more of their primarch kept me hooked, though. Thankfully! For if I had stopped, I would have missed out on a truly wonderful primarch novel.
I think I enjoyed this one so much because it felt like it had more life to it than Angron’s novel. Anything involving Konrad just felt like it belonged whereas some of Angron’s felt a bit shoe-horned in.
For those of you more familiar with the 30k history, this novel throws up a fair few ‘hmmm, what if that’s what happened?’ scenarios regarding the Emperor and the Horus Heresy in general. For years we have been told of this glorious Emperor of Mankind and how he is a paragon of justice. Konrad Curze questions that, his visions of the future make the reader wonder why the Emperor ever allowed anything like the Heresy to happen given the fact that He is also able to peer into the future.
I really like the direction that 30k & 40k is going these days and this book just adds more cement into already solid foundations going forward.
Bravo, Guy Haley. You smashed this one out of the park.