TREACHERIES OF THE SPACE MARINES edited by Christopher Dunn,Â Black Library, p/b/ â‚¬10.50,Â http://www.blacklibrary.com/
Reviewed by David Rudden
The fourth in a series of anthologies focusing on the Space Marines, ‘Treacheries’ focuses rather unsurprisingly on the darker side of humanityâ€™s defenders. (‘When Space Marines Go Wild’ was discussed as a title, and then dismissed) Anthologies like this are always hit-and-miss; for every gem you come across, thereâ€™ll always be a lacklustre, by-the-numbers effort. Unfortunately with ‘Treacheries’, the bad far outweighs the good.
The majority of these stories are forgettable, the details blurring into each other a few moments after youâ€™ve finished reading. Thereâ€™s also a couple of reprints and the text of an audiobook, which is nice I suppose if youâ€™re not a huge fan of audiobooks (which Iâ€™m not) but which also strikes me as a bit lazy. A few of the stories are entertaining; Matthew Farrerâ€™s and David Annandaleâ€™s are solid, and Aaron Dembski-Bowdenâ€™s is good if you havenâ€™t already shelled out for the audiobook or MP3. Anthony Reynoldsâ€™ story sees the return of two relatively vintage Black Library characters, which I was pleased to see if only for nostalgiaâ€™s sake.
My pick of the bunch would have to be Farrerâ€™s; itâ€™s got an imaginative voice and has a touch of humour as well. However the fact remains that for the price this is a very patchy affair. Iâ€™d read three of the stories before and only one of the rest was in any way interesting. Give this one a miss.