Wednesday, September 24, 2014

In Vulkan's Name, The Arrival of Rebirth

I myself being a lifelong follower of Vulkan and his sons, and a strict disciple of the Promethean Creed, (so why am I not doing Salamanders right now you ask, more on that later), I was so excited when when Rebirth was announced as the next First Edition title. I eagerly sat and refreshed the page over and over again on the release date until the book became available for preorder. I didn't have to be too worried; though,  as Rebirth has not been as successful as its predecessor The Talons of Horus, and there are still copies available on the Black Library website. The Talons of Horus sold out in under six hours, while Rebirth was made available nearly three weeks ago and some copies remain, albeit just a few.

I love the Salamanders. Their lore, their resolve, determination and just sheer toughness in battle won me over in the first trilogy by author Nick Kyme who has done a fantastic job with a lesser known chapter like the Salamanders. I have stayed away from doing Salamanders of my own because I wanted to increase my painting skills first, and green can be a hard color to get right, especially for the paint scheme I had in mind.  But one day my painting studio will be full of fire and ash, and I will take my rightful place among the fire born.

Forge World has recently released an epic piece of the Primarch Vulkan, as well as some equally inspiring Firedrakes, which are a must have for any true Salamander army. FW also makes a lot of heresy era armour and shoulder pads for the Salamanders. Doing a 30k army of Salamanders intrigues me greatly. Maybe I'll rebuild the legion, who knows.

Anyway, Rebirth came in last week and I was not disappointed. The book itself is a piece of art. A handsome cover is complemented by a few but wonderfully done illustrations. The writing is what you would expect from Nick Kyme. Gritty and pounding. You can hear the crunch of broken rockcrete and smell the fire and ash in the air. The war is intensely personal, the blood splatters across your armour and the sound of vengeance is the crack of your enemies' bones shattering beneath your righteous blows.

The characters themselves are excellent mainly because they are different. We all may love the tough guy Space Marines, but Rebirth shows Salamanders wrestling with deeper questions and personality clashes in a very real and engaging way. The alliance between the Sisters of Battle and the Salamanders is tense and hangs by the slimmest thread, which I did not expect when I first started reading the book. 

The Captain of Sixth Company is not your typical Space Marine captain, which I found more interesting. The war is fought inwardly as much as outwardly and Kyme captures that well. In typical Kyme fashion, he does leave you hanging in pretty much every story line, although more light is shed on many of the characters from past series, but once again nothing concrete is revealed. Honestly, it seems that they will be chasing Tsu'gan until the 50th millennium. I really enjoyed reading Kyme's latest book, and I highly recommend it.