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Isha's Lament

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The Blackstone Fortress is a haven for those seeking fame, glory and power amongst the horrors of the galaxy. To many, it is a treasure trove beyond imagination, to others, it is an escape from their past, a chance to put their skills to use on the edge of the galaxy far from prying eyes. Brakus Andradus is the latter. A former sniper in the Astra Militarum, now a deserter The Blackstone Fortress is a haven for those seeking fame, glory and power amongst the horrors of the galaxy. To many, it is a treasure trove beyond imagination, to others, it is an escape from their past, a chance to put their skills to use on the edge of the galaxy far from prying eyes. Brakus Andradus is the latter. A former sniper in the Astra Militarum, now a deserter aiming to drown his memories, Brakus stumbles from job to job. But, after a deadly plague breaks out following his last expedition and threatens to wipe out the denizens of Precipice, the sniper is forced back into the Fortress in search of a cure, with only the slimmest hope of finding one.


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The Blackstone Fortress is a haven for those seeking fame, glory and power amongst the horrors of the galaxy. To many, it is a treasure trove beyond imagination, to others, it is an escape from their past, a chance to put their skills to use on the edge of the galaxy far from prying eyes. Brakus Andradus is the latter. A former sniper in the Astra Militarum, now a deserter The Blackstone Fortress is a haven for those seeking fame, glory and power amongst the horrors of the galaxy. To many, it is a treasure trove beyond imagination, to others, it is an escape from their past, a chance to put their skills to use on the edge of the galaxy far from prying eyes. Brakus Andradus is the latter. A former sniper in the Astra Militarum, now a deserter aiming to drown his memories, Brakus stumbles from job to job. But, after a deadly plague breaks out following his last expedition and threatens to wipe out the denizens of Precipice, the sniper is forced back into the Fortress in search of a cure, with only the slimmest hope of finding one.

40 review for Isha's Lament

  1. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Summerbell

    Isha’s Lament introduces the engaging character of Brakus Andradus into the world of Blackstone Fortress. A salvaging expedition to a burned out vessel has unintended consequences - although not in a way that even a veteran reader might expect. Strong action sequences are interspersed with a compelling story involving captivating and multi-dimensional characters. Not only is there a great deal of depth in this short but satisfying work, but it also sets up intriguing possibilities for future Isha’s Lament introduces the engaging character of Brakus Andradus into the world of Blackstone Fortress. A salvaging expedition to a burned out vessel has unintended consequences - although not in a way that even a veteran reader might expect. Strong action sequences are interspersed with a compelling story involving captivating and multi-dimensional characters. Not only is there a great deal of depth in this short but satisfying work, but it also sets up intriguing possibilities for future stories. Parrott has provided an introduction to a complex world that is accessible to a relative newcomer like me, but I’m sure will be a welcome extension to the canon to even the most avid fan. Highly recommended.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Alex Khlopenko

    Dark, unapologetic, heartbreaking.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Bees

    Isha's Lament is a fantastic story of mystery, intrigue and cooperation between unlikely allies. It's centred around the Blackstone Fortress, one of the only places in the 40k Universe where different races intermingle and cooperate. This leads to some amazing opportunities for character interaction that you don't get anywhere else in 40k, and Parrott takes full advantage of this. We have human, aeldari, drukhari, Mechanicus and a whole host more, all acting true to their factions and Isha's Lament is a fantastic story of mystery, intrigue and cooperation between unlikely allies. It's centred around the Blackstone Fortress, one of the only places in the 40k Universe where different races intermingle and cooperate. This leads to some amazing opportunities for character interaction that you don't get anywhere else in 40k, and Parrott takes full advantage of this. We have human, aeldari, drukhari, Mechanicus and a whole host more, all acting true to their factions and interacting in appropriate and satisfying ways. The characters are all deep and complex, as we've come to expect from Parrott's writing, and they are as much a focus to this story as the Blackstone Fortress itself. Rooted deeply in the fantasy heart of this Sci fi tale, the Fortress is a character in its own right, thwarting our characters at every turn in ways that continue to amaze and astound. The story is high stakes and weaves together exciting action and fight scenes with meaningful character interaction and thoughtful perspectives. I really loved seeing a snippet of life on Precipice, the void station that serves as a base near the Blackstone Fortress. We get to see how the races live together in some semblance of peace, and even get a quick look at some of their differing religious beliefs regarding the Emperor. Isha's Lament introduces some really memorable characters who I desperately hope we'll see more of in the future. It left me both wanting to delve into more Blackstone Fortress fiction and read more of Parrott's writing. I'd recommend it highly to anyone and I think it would also make a great introduction to 40k literature.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Edoardo Albert

    Number 3 in the second Black Library Novella series and the standard hasn't dropped at all - if anything, it's improving. Brakus Andradus, the ex-Imperial Guard sniper with a mordant tongue and a death wish, makes for a suitably driven 40k hero, but Parrott skillfully blends him with a varied cast of Aeldar, Dark Aeldar and the other ne'er do wells that skulk around the Blackstone Fortress, hoping to make their fortunes or find their souls. It's a great setting, and Parrott does it justice, with Number 3 in the second Black Library Novella series and the standard hasn't dropped at all - if anything, it's improving. Brakus Andradus, the ex-Imperial Guard sniper with a mordant tongue and a death wish, makes for a suitably driven 40k hero, but Parrott skillfully blends him with a varied cast of Aeldar, Dark Aeldar and the other ne'er do wells that skulk around the Blackstone Fortress, hoping to make their fortunes or find their souls. It's a great setting, and Parrott does it justice, with something of the deep weirdness of the Fortress itself coming across in the denouement. A fine novella and hopefully notice of a major new 40k writer.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Danie Ware

    Nicely done, with an almost hypnotic rhythm to the sentence structure - unusual, and kept the flow of the narrative up very well.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Alina Zabiyaka

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. “The moment you decide you’re safe in the fortress is the moment you die.” More than a year ago Warhammer Quest: Blackstone Fortress dungeon-crawler was released, offering ample potential for the scores of new stories. Black Library’s novelisations of the game do much to enliven this recent branch of the wider 40K universe, and so for the fans of the titular subsetting it will be great fun to try and replay the events of Thomas Parrot’s latest novella as well. Isha’s Lament is a nicely wrought, “The moment you decide you’re safe in the fortress is the moment you die.” More than a year ago Warhammer Quest: Blackstone Fortress dungeon-crawler was released, offering ample potential for the scores of new stories. Black Library’s novelisations of the game do much to enliven this recent branch of the wider 40K universe, and so for the fans of the titular subsetting it will be great fun to try and replay the events of Thomas Parrot’s latest novella as well. Isha’s Lament is a nicely wrought, engaging read that vividly showcases the unique atmosphere of the cryptic Blackstone Fortress – a veritable ‘Space Babel’, if you like – far away from xenophobic reach of the Imperium of Man. Contrary to the harsh Imperial edicts, such a void fortress – dangerous, enigmatic, wayward and seemingly alive in more than one way – is a truly cosmopolitan place, attracting the daring and the desperate from each and every warring faction from around the galaxy. Most of them spend their time coming to blows with one another in the bid to reach the fort’s countless prizes, but many more have to act in concert to brave the blackstone depths and achieve their goals. Thus a Biel-Tan Craftworld ranger Amallyn Shadowguide has to swallow her pride and enlist the help of a former Imperial guardsman Brakus Andradus (who had lost his homeworld to an Exterminatus after a massive tyranid incursion), a wytch from the starkly differing branch of her ancient race, and a lone cyborg – always a welcome addition to a 40K story! At first, predictably, these adventurers don’t really seem to have any love lost between them; and yet the good old teamwork eventually gets them right where they need to be. Soon the human and the aliens earn mutual, if grudging, respect – and even find something in common besides their primary target. Expect also some nicely woven hints at the larger picture concerning their peoples’ current state of affairs… Granted, the aeldari are not the viewpoint characters here (for which I’d initially hoped) – instead we see the events from the perspective of the human sniper-turned-deserter with a complex backstory – but still they play a decisive role in the narrative, as the two xenos are forced to find common tongue with Andradus on their expedition to an ancient, derelict ship. The vessel in question proudly (or not...) bears the name of Goddess Isha – better known as the spouse/captive/unwilling participator in the medical experiments of the Chaos Lord of Decay – and so instantly brings to mind certain correlations which actually prove right as the plot progresses – it even put me in mind of Steven King’s The Stand (albeit on a smaller scale of course). Despite its comparative brevity, Isha’s Lament displays some of the myriad ways in which the mysterious Fortress plays games of its own with an explorer’s mind. Yet the heroes and their foes generally manage to remain themselves – a great example is a certain Astra Militarum commissar firmly holding sway over his charges even after their treachery against the Imperium. In all, it’s an entertaining sci-fi novella celebrating valour and comradeship in the face of unimaginable perils. In my humble opinion it would’ve been even better with a little more focus on the aeldari and their mythology… Still, its plot straightforward but lively, dialogues and fight scenes well rendered, the novella is deeply psychological and action-heavy in equal measure. Parrott’s flowing, energetic and thoughtful style and his impressive knowledge of the wider setting easily make him one of the best ‘new cohort’ authors contributing to the ever-expanding world of Warhammer.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Michael Dodd

    Brakus Andradus – once a soldier, now a hunter – is part of a group of explorers who find a ruined, dead ship within the Blackstone Fortress, and in doing so unwittingly trigger a calamity that endangers everyone on both the fortress and Precipice. Despite his failing health Brakus ventures back in search of a way to prevent disaster, accompanied by a motley group of uneasy companions, and in the darkness faces up to his fears. It’s a tremendously entertaining adventure story full of excitement Brakus Andradus – once a soldier, now a hunter – is part of a group of explorers who find a ruined, dead ship within the Blackstone Fortress, and in doing so unwittingly trigger a calamity that endangers everyone on both the fortress and Precipice. Despite his failing health Brakus ventures back in search of a way to prevent disaster, accompanied by a motley group of uneasy companions, and in the darkness faces up to his fears. It’s a tremendously entertaining adventure story full of excitement and action but also empathy and pathos, primarily (but not exclusively) with Brakus as he’s forced to process his past and his emotions in ways he hasn’t been able to before. It would make an excellent introduction to the setting, but also stands perfectly alongside Darius Hinks’ novel Blackstone Fortress to expand things out a little more – either way it’s an excellent novella, and well worth checking out for any 40k or Blackstone Fortress fan. Read the full review at https://www.trackofwords.com/2019/11/...

  8. 5 out of 5

    Danny Montgomery

    It wasn't bad. I almost gave this 3 stars but figured that was a little harsh when there wasn't anything really wrong with this. It did feel like a book made with a game in mind and that is saying something when its part of universe that is a game. (that sounds confusing) I guess I am trying to say that this felt more like a Black Stone Fortress book then a Warhammer 40k, even though BSF takes place in the 40k world. That's not a bad thing, its just an observation. So if if your into Black Stone It wasn't bad. I almost gave this 3 stars but figured that was a little harsh when there wasn't anything really wrong with this. It did feel like a book made with a game in mind and that is saying something when its part of universe that is a game. (that sounds confusing) I guess I am trying to say that this felt more like a Black Stone Fortress book then a Warhammer 40k, even though BSF takes place in the 40k world. That's not a bad thing, its just an observation. So if if your into Black Stone Fortress or are interested to check it out this looks like a good spot for it.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Declan Waters

    Isha's Lament follows the arrival of a disease on the Blackstone Fortress and it's impact on the denizens of Precipice. A fun little novella, which provides a little more background on one of the latest additions to a corner of the Imperium of Man - in the 41st Millenium.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Strugnell

  11. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Acosta

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jakub Sládek

  13. 4 out of 5

    Brian Stabler

  14. 5 out of 5

    Adam Selby-Martin

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lee Rawnsley

  16. 5 out of 5

    Dennis Gamst

  17. 4 out of 5

    Demetrius James

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jack Doud

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ryan

  20. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Sayer

  21. 4 out of 5

    Frank

  22. 5 out of 5

    Paul

  23. 4 out of 5

    David

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stuartcuth

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tim Van Lipzig

  26. 5 out of 5

    Evil Kipper

  27. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sean McKee

  29. 4 out of 5

    Robert Gustavsson

  30. 5 out of 5

    Wilfried

  31. 5 out of 5

    Michael Hollows

  32. 5 out of 5

    Molly (MBN)

  33. 4 out of 5

    Ryan

  34. 5 out of 5

    Dave

  35. 5 out of 5

    Ferpari

  36. 4 out of 5

    Paulo "paper books always" Carvalho

  37. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Merrill

  38. 4 out of 5

    Linda Verchick

  39. 5 out of 5

    Ogbaoghene

  40. 5 out of 5

    Joel Harris

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