Friday, 5 April 2013

Warhammer Time of Legends Book Review: Caledor By Gav Thorpe

I've been meaning to read Caledor for ages, having bought it when it first came out. Having finally got round to it i must say i enjoyed it a great deal. Caledor is the end of The Sundering, a long standing staple of Warhammer lore that tells of the Elvish civil war leading to the fall of Ulthuan and the creation of the Dark Elves or Druchii, to give them their proper title.

The Sundering is a slightly unusual trilogy in that the books overlap, each told from a different perpective. Malekith told of The Prince of Naggarythes rise and I found it to be a well written tale only the characterisation of a few of the pivotal figures letting the book down. The stuff about Malekith days as High Elf general and his ultimately tragic friendship with the Dwarf Snorri Whitebeard I found particularly compelling. Shadow King, the second book in the series was excellent, more tightly focussed, telling the story of Alith Anar as he rallies the loyal left in Naggarythe against the Druchii.

Shadow King really was a brilliant book and one I vastly enjoyed. The plot is compelling and despite the more focussed nature of the narrative the story seems just as far reaching and important as that of Malekith. Which brings us to Caledor. Bridging events of both Malekith and Shadow King it is certainly the more action packed of the novels of the Sundering, and although the actually Sundering itself is only in the book in a Prospero Burns kind of way it can be argued that the events leading up to the cataclysmic event itself are just as important.

Caledor deals with Prince Imriks appointment as Phoenix King and his war against the Druchii, taking in nearly the entire of the realm of Ulthuan in its scope. Now Gav Thorpe is often unfairly (in my opinion) maligned as an author but I have for the most part had no problem with any of his novels. I have yet to read the Eldar books but his other series I have for the most part enjoyed and I do feel that his writing has developed and matured as time has passed. Certainly we are a long way from his 'Last Chancer' novels (although I enjoyed those too) Probably the highest praise I can give to Thorpe’s Caledor is that at times I truly forgot I was reading a Warhammer novel, rather impressive given the epic nature of the subject matter.

In a very real sense Caledor IS The Sundering in a book and you could probably read just this one novel (although I would strongly recommend Shadow King as well) you could also read these books in any order, Indeed I think they work better as individual entities than they do as a trilogy. (You can now pick up this series in an Omnibus edition)

That said, Caledor takes a while to get going and I struggled a little through the opening chapters as the book attempted to establish itself. Once it does get going however, its hard to put down.

Caledor gets 4 out of 5 from me.


1 comment:

  1. One of my main projects at the moment is building up the 4th Edition High Elf Army I started when I was 14, which is Caledor themed - didn't know I needed this book (or the other two in the trilogy) before reading this post! ;)