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Alpha_Battlebrother

Guardsmen Novels - Books

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What books that have been written about WH40K are about the Imperial Guard Duty / War Drama.  I remember seeing one online several years ago but didn't buy it at the time and was just curious if anyone had any suggestions on which titles are good and which ones can be used as great background material for Only War.

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Dead Men Walking, the Gaunt's Ghosts series, the Ciaphas Cain series, and I guess that Double Eagle technically counts.

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So far most important IG series are above mentioned Gaunts Ghosts (Sharpe in Space), Caiphas Cain (Flashman in Space), and my first 40k read Last Chancers (Dirty Dozen in Space), which I think are essential to the knowledge about Guard. Then we have a lose series of independent novels of variing quality dealing with various regiments, so far we have:

15 Hours (generic regiment but cultish and essential). Deathworlds (Catachans), Rebel Winter (Vostroyans, good), Desert Raiders (Tallarans), Ice Guard (Valhallans), Gunheads (cadians but more focus is on their identity as Armored regiment), Cadian Blood (Cadian Shock Troops proper), Redemption Corps (Stormtroopers frak yeah), Dead Men Walking (Death Korps of Krieg), Iron Guard (ebook only, Mordians) and there is incoming Fire Caste (generic guard against Tau and Traitors), Baneblade (about fifteen barrels of hell) and Commissar (about that guy and Vostroyans, ebook only)

 

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Previous covered pretty much everythin though id add my weight behind reading the gaunts ghosts books - Dan Abnett has been so influential in shaping the current 40k canon that his books are a must for getting into the feel of these games. Also while the Tanith 1st & Only as depicted in the Gaunts Ghosts novels are essentially a recon/light regiment, the novels contain dozens of other regiments they fight besides which gives a good overall impression of the differing fighting styles of the guard. It also has seccesionist and chaos forces, as well as a smattering of mercenary xenos (http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Loxatl#.UPqOwTUZcSE being a personal fav of mine!).

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First things first: Gaunt's Ghosts is my favorite book series of all time. So yes, I may be a little biased when I say that Dan Abnett has written the best series in the history of si-fi. It does not change the fact that they are great books, and very intense. Just remember though, they are expendable. Yes, even your favorite character. I have not read any of the other Guard novels listed above, but I HAVE heard good things about Ciaphas Cain and Last Chancers.

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Currently readign Hammer of the Emperor, a compilation of Gunheads, Ice Guard & Desert Raiders plus a few shorts. Second most stuff by Dan Abnett, including Titanicus for the discerning Enginseer - great for how the cogboys talk among themselves.

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I can only support the recomendations made above. Caiphas Cain is a particular favourate of mine as it offers a less grim-dark view of the universe (I call it blackadder in space most of the time) but Guants Ghosts is far better at detailing the Guard side of the setting.

If you want something outside the setting that can provide you with some inspiration I can recomend Sniper One by Dan Mills which gives a very interesting look inside the modern British Army (and from a very 'Soldier' point of view), and Rainbow Six by Tom Clancy (for the more Special Forces themed game really)

Hope this helps

Surak

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From non-40k novels I highly recommend Complete McAuslan by George MacDonald Fraser for every Game Master who want to flesh out what guardsmen do while they are not fighting. Watch out for your uniforms on parades.

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