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donderdag 29 januari 2009

Malus Darkblade: The Daemon's Curse

Dan Abnett & Mike Lee's The Daemon's Curse is the first in the Malus Darkblade series. Malus is a well-known character from the Warhammer fantasy tabletop game. He is a Dark Elf, who is especially cruel (even for his race). This series tells the story of how he gets possessed by the demon (or daemon if you will) Tz'arkan. The first installment recounts the events leading up to the possession.

Malus is a highborn Dark Elf, a noble, who has not been able to gather the amount of bounty which is expected given his place in society. On the instigation of his sister Nagaira he leaves the race's capitel Hag Graef in search of an unknown source of great power and wealth. During his search and travels, accompanied by a score of retainers, he basically gets in fights, captured and tortured all of the time. This is followed by him worming or fighting himself out of the predicament of the moment. It goes on like that right up until he gets possessed.

The description above doesn't really do justice to the crafty writing of the authors, but this is how the book feels. Things happen one after the other. There isn't a real deepening of the main characters, apart from Malus' cruelty and hateful temparement. Maybe I'm missing something because I'm not a Warhammer player. I only know what the game is about thanks to what some of my friends have told me about it and the few times I joined them. So for the Warhammer fans there might be an extra layer to the story that went straight over my head. In short, if you're not really into the whole Dark Elf thing, I wouldn't especially recommend the book. In my opinion Dan Abnett's Warhammer 40,000 books are a lot more interesting (even for a 'layman' like me).

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