Deliverance Lost – Gav Thorpe

Published: 27 December 2011 
Publisher: Black Library 
Pages: 408
Series: Horus Heresy #18
Format Read: Physical Copy


As the Horus Heresy divides the Imperium, Corax and his few remaining Raven Guard escape the massacre at Isstvan V. Tending to their wounds, the bloodied Space Marines endeavour to replenish their numbers and return to the fray, taking the fight to the traitor Warmaster. Distraught at the crippling blow dealt to his Legion, Corax returns to Terra to seek the aid of his father – the Emperor of Mankind. Granted access to ancient secrets, Corax begins to rebuild the Raven Guard, planning his revenge against his treacherous brother primarchs. But not all his remaining warriors are who they appear to be… the mysterious Alpha Legion have infiltrated the survivors and plan to destroy the Raven Guard before they can rebuild and threaten Horus’s plans.


img_2480Color Cover for the Mass market paperbacks.

Man, does it feel great to be able to read a physical book again and what a book at that! Even though it took us a month to get through Deliverance Lost, I still had a great time with it. Gav had a momentus job of tying certain story lines together as well as make this book an actual Heresy novel, it has been starting to feel like way too many short story compilations in a short time as  well as books that were added that should have rather been stand alone. I am glad I still have Jenn on board this buddy read. We did not have a lot of contact like with previous books, but I am still happy we got to interact with one another as she helps fill in blanks I end up overthinking too much about. If you have not read Jenn’s review just click her name above and it’ll take you to her review highly recommend following her blog as well as she does a lot more than just Warhammer reviews.

With Deliverance Lost I was fortunate enough again to own the copy that had a lot of artwork in that is part of the Hatchette Partworks collection I have talked about earlier this month. Corax featured in most of them and I also felt a lot more thought went into this novel regarding the picture that were included. Where to start with this review though? So much has happened since I started the novel that I am afraid I might touch down on certain key points and forget other things I wanted to say.

The first elememt for me was the mention of the Dropsite Massacare that I had no idea had happened already, and if it did, it was either dropped during one of the short stries in previous books, but there is to my knowledge no mention in a novel before that that THAT was it´s given name which gave me some pause as I thought I missed something some where. I know the part wher there was a big battle at Istvan III but never thought this was part of that battle. Or that it took place after the events of Istvan III. There was a short story telling how Corax was saved from that ordeal and I guess most of what Thorpe wrote sprung from that tale as some of those characters were prominent figures within the novel. That was cool and neatly done as I believe the short story in question was done by a different author. All confusion aside though, I ended up not trying to overthink it too much and after that it became easy to follow the aftermath of that event.


Not to sound biased in any way, but Corax came of as a great gene father for his Legion. This novel not only moved the overall Heresy Plot along, but it also touched down on Corax´s upbringing and his lore. I felt this a breath of fresh air as other novels so far had Primarchs either meet up with their legion later or after overcoming great ordeals of some kind only to be introduced to their Legion and then face of their first enemy throughout the novel. Deliverance Lost put a whole new perspective on telling of an origin story. Corax gets reminded about certian things back in the day as the story unfolds and we get his flashbacks that did not hamper the overall plot of the novel in any way what so ever. Deliverance Lost I thought was going to be a hopeless case of Corax makes it out alive only to be killed on his home planet, which turned out not to be the case (sorry, late spoiler warning). It told us the story of how Deliverance came to be as well as how Corax grew into the person he was in the novel. Corax so far has also been the only Primarch that was somewhat straight forward with warriors of his Legion, he did not piss about with secrets and clandistine brotherhoods. I say that but there was the fact that there was a devide between those that survived Isstavan V and those that were not there, but the way Corax decided to settle that account was dealt in such a great way that he has easily become one of my most liked Primarchs. This was my first Raven Gaurd novel tho, so I will have to see what they all get up to.


Joining Corax on his journey home, via a detour to Terra to ask The Emperor for help in rebuilding his Legion that suffered heavy casualties, it was amazing to see Thorpe let fall little hints here and there and give nods to certain novels or short stories that went before. Corax confronts Dorn that wants to keep him and bring his Legion all in preperation for fortifying Terra, but he refuses and just before sparks fly, Emperor fucking finally made an appearance of sorts and decides to help Corax on exacting his vengeance. This was great but not with its own trails and tribulations. Seeing as Corax, neither the most brilliant telepath in the wole 40K galaxy can detect that there has been infitrations done and some of the Raven Gaurd are actually very well disguised Alpha Legion opperatives…

I have not seen the Alpha Legion in action since Legion and it was great to see how they work. I was a bit confused with all the “I am Alpharius,he is Alpharius, we are all Alpharuises”, that was going on, but I was over all real happy with what I got. What I still did not get to figure out is are the Alpha Legion now truely against the emperor or are they undecided when it comes to the Heresy in general. I am yet to make up my mind if I trust them, as with what happened in Legion, it looked like they were going to actually be good guys. I’ll have to wait and see.

Another cool edition to Deliverance Lost was the inclusion of certain events spanning as far back as the Mechanicum novel. It is now finally understood that there was a schim between the Machine Cult and the fact that some Legions (read traitors) are better suited than the rest (loyalists) was evident within the novel. Countless throwbacks were made and I just loved all the back tracking through previous novels to keep me on my toes as to remembering what some of it meant. Corax, having been given the key to the Primarch Seed Project also saw him having to take a member of the Mechanicum on board. There was also a lot of things here and there only hinted at of how the seeds and Primarch technologies were put in together, but no concrete conclusions that I could understand all too much, but I did not care too much as I was just loving how the Heresy itself was moving along. 


One of the other things that made Corax such a great Primarch in my eyes was the fact that some of the experemantation they were doing back fired, back fired due to the hands of the Alpha Legion opperatives having their hand in the cookie dough. Due to this a certain amount of volunteers suffer transformations and rather than putting them down, Corax goes and asks them to make the choise of fight for and with the Legion as threats start coming through the woodwork. I also liked how they included this certain band of individuals to call them raptors, as far as I know within the WH table top Raptor squads are always revered veterans that can reign fiery death uppon their enemy as they all have jump packs. I could be wrong and this could all just be coincidence, but I liked that bit of lore thrown in there. I have never seen deformed Raven Guard units come around, but I now have a good Idea when it comes to one day painting my own Raven Gaurd units… One day…


dl happysml

Deliverance Lost was a great read. It took me a long time to get through it as general life and work stuff got in the way, but when I sat down to read I could easily do 20-60 pages at a time. The fact that chapters were also not long, helped as I was happy to do just one chapter per day, granted when I got to read. There are a lot of things that I probably forgot to say, but it’s been nearly two weeks since finishing the novel and I have struggled to get time to get a blog down for it. It got a 5 out of 5 from me on GR and will definitely be exited and on the lookout to see what the Raven Gaurd will do next. These guys are pissed off and with good reason to be so and I want to see more of that Space Marine against Space Marine action. The starter that I got with them taking on the Word Bearers on a close planet was great to read. This book will also be up there with my favorite Heresy books for sure.

18 thoughts on “Deliverance Lost – Gav Thorpe

  1. Glad to hear it turned out so well. Sometimes even a good book can suffer if read over a long period of time, so it’s nice to hear that wasn’t the case here.

    You mention painting. Have you given more thought about getting into the miniature side of things then?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ive gotten that miniature set earlier this year and a paint set to start with. The only problem i have now is time and the fact that i have a cat that finds everything i might be busy with to his liking😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh yeah, time. There’s just not enough is there?

        so your cat is nosy eh? I know some cats are and some avoid stuff like the plague. At least you know your cat loves you 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Nah, just have a lot going on at the moment mate.

        Oi certainly has take a liking to me. I took him to the vet yesterday to get his nails clipped back a bit. Had to help the vet hold him down. He was a real champ.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Wonderful, glad you liked it! I remember being surprised at just how much I liked this one, though having pretty much zero interest in the Raven Guard prior to reading it helped it to feel fresh, somehow. Plus, Alpha Legion! Even if they are pretty much just a meme at times, I still love them! 😃

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I guess that’s the point, though in the 40k setting they’re reduced to caricatures. I love Legion because it really sets them up as being this huge question mark over the whole Heresy, and it really starts off the idea of whether the Imperium can really be said to be the good guys. Layers upon layers, and wheels within wheels!!

        Liked by 1 person

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