A century after his recovery of the alien Necroteuch, Gregor Eisenhorn is one of the Imperial Inquisition’s most celebrated agents. But when a face from his past returns to haunt him, and he is implicated in a great tragedy that devastates the world of Thracian Primaris, Eisenhorn’s universe crumbles around him. The daemon Cherubael is back, and seeks to bring the inquisitor to ruin – either by his death, or by turning him to the service of the Dark Gods.
A coloured version of the cover.
It has taken me five years to aquire all three books in the original Eisenhorn trilogy. The first time I found out about him was when reading Abnett’s Ravenor series. This was five years ago and it is still one of my favorite books. It was also one of the first Warhammer books I started my 40K obsession with… Last year saw Black Library issue new books also regarding Eisenhorn, it is called Magos and I do not yet have a copy of that, I think it will be decided when I finish the last book in this trilogy.
The cover version of earlier Malleus prints… I am quite glad I have a different print…
Malleus is the second book in the Inquisitor Eisenhorn series. The story takes place a hundred years after the events of Xenos. Eisenhorn has been busy building up a small retinue of people he trusts and can call upon when the shit hits the fan. Boy, does it hit the fan in this one…
Not only is he suspected for making pacts with daemons, but he also becomes an enemy of The Inquisition. This also goes to show that even people working for the Holy Ordos can be won over by the taint of Chaos from time to time. Eisenhorn needs to fight hard to prove his innocence, he also looses a good few friends along the way.
It was good to read about the three different Ordos within the Inquisition. How they work and in some cases refuse to work with fellows of their different factions. It can be a frustrating thing having to deal with stuff like that. It can become even more infuriating if the people that you believe fight the good fight alongside you can turn around and accuse you of Heresy by mere hearsay… (I am very proud of this last sentance, it is the only one I used from my notes while reading the book… the rest I pull out of my arse as I go along…)
In Malleus we read everything from the first person perspective. All from the voice of Eisenhorn himself. As Ravenor was done in the same way, I should’ve been used to the writing style by now. I mean Xenos was done the same way, yet I gave it a low score (3 out of 5 if I remember correctly).
I have had about two days to think things through regarding Malleus. I found it a bit boring and stupid, but relooking back at the story as a whole, Abnett actually wrote real well. I have stated in previous reviews that I sometimes feel very ill informed on all things 40K related, reading an Abnett makes me feel dumb and stupid. I think that is exactly what he wants. The story Eisenhorn tells you seems plotless and wishy washy. I have read some other reviews on Goodreads stating that that was exactly Abnett’s plan. In the end though you are left with a book where all loose things come together. It all works in some vague way and that is what matters.
Eisenhorn visits and escapes to a lot of planets during the events of Malleus. That’s what makes Eisenhorn a classic in many people’s opinion. You can discover what has existed for years and years in the 40K universe. Eisenhorn’s main quest was to track down and kill the Daemonhost Cherubael. All this while members of the Inquisition are also on his trail. He also uncovers greater evils in his quest for Cherubael. He takes years and in many cases months and weeks to travel from place to place and to train to become more than the puny Inquisitor that Cherubael thought he could best at any given moment. Eisenhorn tells us in certain detail of the trials an preperation he went through to get to that final standoff.
A little zoom in from the corner page of the previous picture above. I do love the artwork of the daemonhosts, it helped me a lot while reading Malleus.
All in all I had a blast reading this book. My rating on GR was a 3 out of 5 initialy, but after mulling things over I can see it going up a star. Maybe with a re-read later. It comes recommended for those who like the Inquisition stories. It does not come recommended to those that concider themselves enemies of The Emperor.
Have any of you finished this trilogy? Did you find it great or Meh? Let me know in the comments!
If you missed my review of Xenos, you can find it here
I hope you are all well.