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Mechanicum (The Horus Heresy #9)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  3,033 Ratings  ·  106 Reviews
As the flames of treachery spread throughout the Imperium, Horus plots to subvert or destroy all those who would stand against him. On Mars, home world of the Mechanicum priesthood, the great manufactory-cities have long produced much of the weaponry required for the expeditionary fleets across the galaxy - making the world invaluable to whoever controls it in the coming w ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published November 25th 2008 by Games Workshop
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Jun 22, 2011 rated it it was ok
Of every Horus Heresy novel to date, I think I was looking forward to this more than any. Boy was I setting myself up for a huge disappointment! Rather than the rise of the Dark Mechanicum and a massively draw-out high-tech war (which is after all McNeill's raisen d'etre), we get a plodding story which weaves several seperate strands together to knit an underwhelming whole.

Once again, we get one side told from the perspective of 'normal' humans, something which is overdone by this point in the s
Mar 18, 2013 rated it it was ok
We've met several 'alien' planets in the course of the series thus far but they've never been more than peripheral. That's never been an issue as those brief impressions served their purpose. Now, however, we're closer to home: Mars. Tens of millennia of history, second jewel in the crown of the Imperium an' all that. It's a shame that the book never quite captures the scale of the whole thing. Functionally, this is a whole world at war and yet we see only minute snippets as we're given an endle ...more
Keamy Loken
Apr 22, 2010 rated it really liked it
Good read, likable characters. (Possibly the first time I liked the normal humans in a story.)
Up to this point what I have read about adepts etc. Makes them all out as terrible not interesting characters. This showed their true colors :P
I'd recommend it to any heresy fan. The ending left me smacking my head, and added some interesting ideas for my fan fiction :D
Sep 28, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is Book Nine of the Black Library Horus Heresy series, the second novel of the series by Graham McNeill.

Thus far I have read the entire series. The series is overall exceptional; easily the best work but out by Black Library to date. There have been a few small “bumps” along the road. I point to Descent of Angels as the low point of the series as far as catching and holding my attention as well as staying true to the feel of the other books.

My favorites of the series so far are Flight of th
Kym Jackson
Mar 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
Another mildly enjoyable addition to the Horus Heresy series, which - though I think Pulp-Sci-Fi fiction (including Games Workshop, Star Wars, &c.) has a place - makes too many missteps which can't just be excused by the fact that these books are not meant to be fine literature. I also wonder what the non-initiated would make of this book - I think it would be incomprehensible.

Once again, there was no need to tell this story from the point of view of some lowly humans, it would have been be
Fabian Scherschel
Sep 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Definitely one of the best books in the series so far; on par with Dan Abnett's awesome opening. A great story, surprisingly epic, that sheds a long-awaited light on the nature of the Mechanicum. McNeill paints a brilliant picture of Mars and its cults, and while the book has a slow beginning and slow stretches in the middle, it is fascinating all the way. The final battle is nothing short of breathtaking and the characters are very well written. This is one of the books in the series where you ...more
Dylan Murphy
Apr 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Ah Mechanicum.
This truly glorious story was about the civil war that takes place on Mars at the start of the Horus Heresy, and details the fall of mars and the rise of the Dark Mechanicum.
The novel was really, really good. I read The Kaban Project before it, and the tie-ins were amazing. It provided some really good insight into some of the characters.

Now for the novel itself, there were so many awesome things. The very technological battles that took place were awesome, as well as what the Da
Mar 18, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: no one
This book continues to tell the story of the Horus Heresy.

Cheap fiction is one of my guilty pleasures, and I like to mix in these books with my more normal reading.

The book is written by one of the better novelists in the Black Library's cycle of writers. However, I feel the book is lacking in a few key areas.

1) It tries to follow 3 story arcs. None of the stories are very good to begin with, and trying to cram them all into 400 pages didn't work.

2) There are too many characters (this is norma
Alexander Draganov
Feb 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Frenetic ending made this book look much better than it actually is! That's the annoying part with McNeill, I know that when he is top, he is one of the best, but he takes a long time to set up the story. Here we follow the story of Dalia Cythera, a young woman with a gift for understanding technology. Within her, the secrets for better future of the humanity are hidden. Sadly, the Horus Heresy finally reached Mars and the Mechanicum is torn by a bloody civil war. In the same time Dalia understa ...more
Sven Mysterioso
An odd book.

Good filler for the Horus Heresy. There's got to be a lot of meat in the Mars Schism plotline. This book doesn't deliver it though. Its too caught up in its own micro-plotting and you miss the larger overtures. Just feels like it wants to be a human interest story.

Also, the Mechanicum is always portrayed a certain way with their surrender of humanity and emotion. This novel stands out alone in that it ignores that. I mean, you have to, in order to have good conflict and build up, but
Latrell Zacklane
Jul 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Well, The Black Library apparently has its own STC on writing Horus Heresy books xD Though, the emotions are vastly varies for me while I've been reading through three recent books of the series, which were "The Legion", "Battle for Abyss" and "Mechanicum". It was like "Wow, that's splendid!" during the "Legion" and "Oh, crap, what a disaster" on the "Battle for Abyss" and I was nearly about to drop wasting my time on the whole cycle. "Mechanicum" has returned me the faith that the wh40k novels ...more
Jan 06, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi, warhammer-40k
Great story that left me with more questions than answers. Very little in the way of Astartes action and what there was made them seem like total jerks, but there is a civil war going on so I suppose we can forgive them. I now want to know more about the Mechanicum in the present time line.
Gabriel Baciu
Dec 21, 2016 rated it liked it
Starts veeery slow but builds up nicely and gets really good at the end.
Too bad it didn't start the same way.
Nov 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: warhammer-40-000
I enjoyed the Titan battles in this book and wished that there were more stories about them. The rest of the novel is okay but I thought that the ending could have used a little more.
Jun 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sience-fiction
This must be the easiest book I've read in a while. Consequently it was also really fun. Despite it being probably classed as 'trashy' Sci-fi Graham McNeill is a good author with an able imagination and good writing ability. Occasionally an action scene might be slightly lacking in comprehensibility but that's about it.

In terms of the Horus Heresy series it doesn't quite reach the heady heights of the first five books, but neither does it stoop as low as Fallen Angels.
Jordan Steinhoff
Jun 01, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
An enjoyable look at the expanding Heresy, this time within the Mechanicum of Mars.

It was a nice break from the ever present space marines and the high drama of some of the other books. A ground level view, for the most part, of the events on Mars and the advent of the Dark Mechanicum.

The story focused a lot on some of the Titan and Knight pilots and these chapters definitely make me want to expand my 30k and 40k armies.

Michael Champion
May 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Another excellent read in the series. I think what I like most about them is that they all stand alone very well, I could pickup any of these so far and read them without having read the others, and not be lost in what's happening, but having read the others I'm able to appreciate them and see references I may have missed otherwise.
Richard Stuart
Jun 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 40k-horus-heresy
The birth of the Dark Mechanicum. Amazing descriptions of the Red Planet as the original Forge World. Legio Tempestus and Mortis God-Engines in battle blare galore. The Dragon of Mars. And beneath it all, the incredible lie that permeates everything happening. Why the hell aren't you reading this book?!
Veronica Anrathi
Jul 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: horus-heresy
This took me a while to finish, which probably means that it was not the most entertaining piece of HH literature for my taste. Was not bad though, but not spectacular enough to give 4 or 5 stars. Part of this is probably because Adeptus Mechanicus is not my ultimate favorite thing about the universe, even though i do appreciate them. Been thinking of drawing Koriel Zeth, if I ever find time.
Tuukka Tervonen
Jun 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
God-Machines walk and do plenty of other things too. Perhaps the most tragic book in the series so far and its saying plenty.
Jeff Sinclair
Jun 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: warhammer-40k
Good story of the revolt on Mars. Was very informative about the culture/thinking of the mechanicum and dark mechanicum. Knocked a star off because I didn't care for the "dragon slaying".
Jan 02, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
The writing is reminiscent of Frank Herbert, I mean this in the worst way possible.
Jan 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Games Workshop's “Warhammer 40,000” universe has so many cool and diverse elements, but one part of it that I've always been lukewarm and kind of “meh” about is the Machine Cult of Mars. They just always felt a little too weird and uninteresting to me. So I approached Graham McNeill's ninth entry in Black Library's “Horus Heresy” series (which is sort of a prequel series that chronicles the intergalactic civil war that sets the 40K universe up), “Mechanicum” with some trepidation. A whole novel ...more
Bob Cline
This is the ninth book of the Horus Heresy. It gives glimpses into one of the most mysterious branches of the Imperium as well as telling several different compelling stories.

The first section is Principia Mechanicum. It follows two storylines. One follows Dalia, a transcriber of the Mechanicum who possesses a gift for innovation as she helps to build a device that will tap into the Warp. The other follows a burgeoning war between the Titan Legions as they take sides in the coming Heresy.

The sec
Apr 22, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle-read
(view spoiler) ...more
Jun 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Knights and Titans and Skitarii and Ordinatus, oh my! The many worlds of the Imperium feel similar, because they're all governed by the Administratum. Mars is different: It feels almost as alien as any xenos homeworld. This is the first and last look we get of Mars at its zenith, before everything goes so very, very wrong.

Dalia Cythera was busy at work when she was struck by a strange idea: "Maybe I can improve this?" She is immediately accused of heresy and sentenced to be executed. Adept Korie
Derek Weese
Apr 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Graham McNeill did it again.
He made me lose sleep, he made me daydream in lecture, he made me wonder what the hell was going to happen next.

I never thought I'd care about a book on the Adeptus Mechanicum, I considered that a novel all about the 'cog boys' would be about as exciting as a depressed Ben Stein describing the sex life of a koala in a audio drama read by an irate Gilbert Gottfreid. (Ok, I'd actually listen to that just for the sheer comedy)
In truth, Mr. McNeill wrote a great book.

Jan 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mechanicum is the ninth instalment in the dramatic and tragic Horus Heresy science-fiction series. The book, through the writer Mr. Graham McNeill, explores Mars and the order of the Mechanicum, it's fall in unity after Horus Lupercal's decision to fight against the Emperor and describes the genesis of Dark Mechanicum.
Mr. McNeil once again proves that he is one of the best writers in the Black Library. He does well in describing the amazing creations and inovations of the Mechanicum and their cu
Michael T Bradley
Jan 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: w40k
I was a LITTLE worried with this book while reading it, because normally I enjoy Graham McNeill more, and this one really seemed to take its sweet time getting to any sort of point, and we had like ... four disparate-seeming plot lines that made me kind of shake my head a lot, asking what the hell the point was.

Essentially this story breaks down into two parts: one, we get to see different bits of the whole Mechanicum splitting into factions because of the Horus Heresy; and, two, we follow Dahl
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  • Nemesis
  • Tales of Heresy
  • The First Heretic
  • Battle for the Abyss
  • Prospero Burns
  • Fallen Angels
  • Age of Darkness
  • Deliverance Lost
  • Descent of Angels
  • Scars
  • Mark of Calth
Hailing from Scotland, Graham McNeill narrowly escaped a career in surveying to work for Games Workshop as a games designer. He has a strong following with his novels Nightbringer, Warriors of Ultramar, Dead Sky, Black Sun and Storm of Iron.
More about Graham McNeill...

Other Books in the Series

The Horus Heresy (1 - 10 of 91 books)
  • Horus Rising
  • False Gods
  • Galaxy in Flames
  • The Flight of the Eisenstein
  • Fulgrim
  • Descent of Angels
  • Legion
  • Battle for the Abyss
  • Tales of Heresy
  • Fallen Angels

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