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Book 2 in the Bequin series Alizebeth Bequin's world has been turned upside-down. Now she must choose who she will follow as Inquisitors Eisenhorn and Ravenor battle to discover the secrets at the heart of Queen Mab. READ IT BECAUSE The latest chapter in Dan Abnett's Inquisition saga is here, and it's packed with shocking twists and stunning revelations that will change the w Book 2 in the Bequin series Alizebeth Bequin's world has been turned upside-down. Now she must choose who she will follow as Inquisitors Eisenhorn and Ravenor battle to discover the secrets at the heart of Queen Mab. READ IT BECAUSE The latest chapter in Dan Abnett's Inquisition saga is here, and it's packed with shocking twists and stunning revelations that will change the way you look at the Warhammer 40,000 universe forever. THE STORY In the mysterious city of Queen Mab, the forces of light and darkness are locked in a murderous struggle for truth. The dedicated agents of the Holy Inquisition battle with their shadowy counterparts, the infamous Cognitae, to discover the encrypted identity of the enigmatic, all-powerful King in Yellow. Caught at the heart of this struggle is the pariah Alizebeth Bequin. Will she stand with the Inquisition or with the Cognitae that raised her? And if she chooses the Inquisition, will it be the wise but ruthless Ravenor or his rival, the denounced heretic Eisenhorn? Bequin must withstand an onslaught of angels, daemons, and even the monstrous warriors of the Traitor Legions, to unpick the greatest riddle of her life. The beloved characters of Eisenhorn and Ravenor return, as implaccable adversaries in a novel of esoteric mystery, macabre intrigue, and vivid action, where the revelation of true identity could mean death… or might shake the Imperium to its very foundations.


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Book 2 in the Bequin series Alizebeth Bequin's world has been turned upside-down. Now she must choose who she will follow as Inquisitors Eisenhorn and Ravenor battle to discover the secrets at the heart of Queen Mab. READ IT BECAUSE The latest chapter in Dan Abnett's Inquisition saga is here, and it's packed with shocking twists and stunning revelations that will change the w Book 2 in the Bequin series Alizebeth Bequin's world has been turned upside-down. Now she must choose who she will follow as Inquisitors Eisenhorn and Ravenor battle to discover the secrets at the heart of Queen Mab. READ IT BECAUSE The latest chapter in Dan Abnett's Inquisition saga is here, and it's packed with shocking twists and stunning revelations that will change the way you look at the Warhammer 40,000 universe forever. THE STORY In the mysterious city of Queen Mab, the forces of light and darkness are locked in a murderous struggle for truth. The dedicated agents of the Holy Inquisition battle with their shadowy counterparts, the infamous Cognitae, to discover the encrypted identity of the enigmatic, all-powerful King in Yellow. Caught at the heart of this struggle is the pariah Alizebeth Bequin. Will she stand with the Inquisition or with the Cognitae that raised her? And if she chooses the Inquisition, will it be the wise but ruthless Ravenor or his rival, the denounced heretic Eisenhorn? Bequin must withstand an onslaught of angels, daemons, and even the monstrous warriors of the Traitor Legions, to unpick the greatest riddle of her life. The beloved characters of Eisenhorn and Ravenor return, as implaccable adversaries in a novel of esoteric mystery, macabre intrigue, and vivid action, where the revelation of true identity could mean death… or might shake the Imperium to its very foundations.

30 review for Penitent

  1. 5 out of 5

    Michael Dodd

    Excellent. Worth the long wait, no doubt about it. I’m already looking forward to re-reading this and enjoying it once again! Roll on Pandaemonium...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ignas

    This is probably one of the best Warhammer 40k books written so far. At least for me, it's at the very top with Requem Infernal by Peter Fehervari. Why is it so good? The prose, the characters and the batshit insane stuff that happens. The Lovecraft's influences, the old mythos of our past, the sheer amount of little details hiding in words! I can't wait the see the theories that people will come up with! This is peak Warhammer! Definitely worth the price of admission that is the Eisenhorn and Ra This is probably one of the best Warhammer 40k books written so far. At least for me, it's at the very top with Requem Infernal by Peter Fehervari. Why is it so good? The prose, the characters and the batshit insane stuff that happens. The Lovecraft's influences, the old mythos of our past, the sheer amount of little details hiding in words! I can't wait the see the theories that people will come up with! This is peak Warhammer! Definitely worth the price of admission that is the Eisenhorn and Ravenor books!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Joseph Wilson

    Voice. Dan Abnett's voice in this is so very different; maybe it was similar to Pariah (should have reread that instead of Eisenhorn) but it fits Beta wonderfully. It was a bit of a slow start, a few things happened that I took small issue with, mistakes that seemed too sloppy for the characters to make. But given the length of time its been between Inquisitor books I can expect a bit of rustiness and he makes up for it with even more skill. Abnett does good stories but his skill is always in th Voice. Dan Abnett's voice in this is so very different; maybe it was similar to Pariah (should have reread that instead of Eisenhorn) but it fits Beta wonderfully. It was a bit of a slow start, a few things happened that I took small issue with, mistakes that seemed too sloppy for the characters to make. But given the length of time its been between Inquisitor books I can expect a bit of rustiness and he makes up for it with even more skill. Abnett does good stories but his skill is always in the ability to show how (in)human these lowly creatures are in the grandscope of 40k. He does it better than anyone else on the BL Staff imo and Pentient is more of what you've come to expect from him. The details and how he describes xenos technology, the warp, everything that much of the genre takes for granted is really refreshing. The bit about the numbers is truly impressing as well, the 1800s esotericism is completely my wheelhouse and I'm embarrassed to say I would have ended up one of the characters at the bar but the level of detail and effort involved with the numbers themselves is insane. I didn't even bother trying to fact check it as I tend to do, you'll know it when you get to it. And get to it you should, even for my non 40k friends I'll recommend this one which I am loathe to normally do. I apologize for how all over the place this review is, I just finished it up and wanted to get my thoughts down because honestly, if you are remotely interested in this one just go ahead and snag it. Snag it and be pissed off with me we gotta wait god knows how long for the next book. I had notes written down but the way goodreads works it seems to have nuked them.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nick Quenga

    Every time I think Dan has peaked (Saturnine), he just keeps getting better. Beta grows into her power and strength of character. These series are great for the human elements and moral situations. Also excellent for so many tie-ins to throw away lines from decades of Dan's writing. Here's hoping we don't have to wait 9 more years for the last book! Every time I think Dan has peaked (Saturnine), he just keeps getting better. Beta grows into her power and strength of character. These series are great for the human elements and moral situations. Also excellent for so many tie-ins to throw away lines from decades of Dan's writing. Here's hoping we don't have to wait 9 more years for the last book!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Peter Christian

    Very tedious watching Dan Abnett fanwank over himself. WAY too much Horus Heresy, WAY too many Legionnaires - this is a 40k book, old man. Suddenly Eisenhorn and Ravenor, acting somewhat like they used to, but not really. Feels disjointed in a fundamental way - the universe has changed so much, while Eisenhorn and Ravenor (the books) are still exactly as they were back then. Dan Abnett is a skilful enough writer, especially in this franchise of mostly recycled plots, violence, tropes and pulp. He do Very tedious watching Dan Abnett fanwank over himself. WAY too much Horus Heresy, WAY too many Legionnaires - this is a 40k book, old man. Suddenly Eisenhorn and Ravenor, acting somewhat like they used to, but not really. Feels disjointed in a fundamental way - the universe has changed so much, while Eisenhorn and Ravenor (the books) are still exactly as they were back then. Dan Abnett is a skilful enough writer, especially in this franchise of mostly recycled plots, violence, tropes and pulp. He does have certain linguistic skill that almost come to the surface in this book, but then is dragged down at his own marvelling over himself. And as usual, he has *absolutely* no respect for established cannon. Null psykers, in Abnett's version of 40k, isn't a fundamental difference inside people, it's just a minor inconvenience that can be technologised away. Ravenor actually speaks in the mind of a null: utterly ridiculous and dumb. Heavy-handed and unnecessary "references" to Robert W. Chamber's "King in Yellow" - I personally think it would have been a lot better to allude to it, like you would "a dark, tentacled creature of primordial nightmare, flabby of body and bearing to huge, dragonlike wings" instead of just writing "Cthulhu". Maybe the Amber Monarch would have been better and a lot less obvious. Also namedropping Leng and a few others along the way. Supposedly this Yellow King is such a badass that traitor Marines (of which there were basically none in the first two trilogies, but now are a ton of in this, the third trilogy) fear him. Why? Oh, because he might be one of the Lost Primarchs. Right. That makes a lot of sense. Sure. If this was supposed to hook me or have me hyping the next book, well, what a shit try. I know the lost primarchs are lost forever, so why even try and set that up? Or GW shocks me beyond belief. Sure hope someone's around when I hear, because that could stop my heart. ...but then, we suddenly get his name at the end. Constantine Valdor. So I guess the "exciting cliffhanger" is more like "how does this fit together?". But that's Dan "Blue-Flames-Crozius" Abnett for ya. So impressed with himself, anything he finds a good idea must come to pass, even if it means rewriting the entire setting to allow it. Editor, please, for the love of lore, get your stuff together.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tepintzin

    Well. I did not see that coming.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Dani

    Bequin is soooooo boring The overall arc is interesting, we know the characters and love them, the city is a fresh new thing unique in the 40k universe, Eisenhorn's brief appearences only make him better, and both warbands are great. So why does is this book such a boring slog to get through? I found my answer after I finally finished this. It's Beta. Everything is allegorry, everything is reminicient, everything is flourish and pompous decorum and previous training and everything is significant. Bequin is soooooo boring The overall arc is interesting, we know the characters and love them, the city is a fresh new thing unique in the 40k universe, Eisenhorn's brief appearences only make him better, and both warbands are great. So why does is this book such a boring slog to get through? I found my answer after I finally finished this. It's Beta. Everything is allegorry, everything is reminicient, everything is flourish and pompous decorum and previous training and everything is significant. She exposes all her previous life over and over in each memory she has. So while it has fun enemies, an intriguing premise, it also puts together the two least interesting and most boring characters Dan has ever written, Patience and Beta. It's a boring slog, despite how cool the area around that slog is. It's only in the very final chapter when things become interesting, when it stops being about the allegories and myths of the Queen Mab and we realIize what they are facing, and then as suddenly as it became interesting, it ends.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rich Marks

    Like most, I have waited a long time for this book. Long enough perhaps, that the initial shine and excitement of Abnett's Inquisitor books being my gateway into an obsession with the Black Library to dull and fade away. I even missed the release of this book, so out of the loop I have been. When I saw the book had been released, I fervently rushed to finish the book I was reading, so that I could start on this. And oh my... The book doesn't take long at all to plunge you into the action, and it Like most, I have waited a long time for this book. Long enough perhaps, that the initial shine and excitement of Abnett's Inquisitor books being my gateway into an obsession with the Black Library to dull and fade away. I even missed the release of this book, so out of the loop I have been. When I saw the book had been released, I fervently rushed to finish the book I was reading, so that I could start on this. And oh my... The book doesn't take long at all to plunge you into the action, and it almost doesn't stop as Beta Bequin guides you through a story, that starts to pull together some very important narrative in the wider 40K universe. Who is the King in Yellow? Abnett's books in the 40K era are unlike any other. To Abnett, Space Marines are a rare commodity. A terror to an every day normal human. This fact is forgotten when you read books based around them. The imperium viewed through the lense of the inhabitants of Queen Mab, is quite a different beast. I have just finished the book and I am honestly just trying to digest what I have read. The implications of this book in the 40K universe as a whole is gargantuan. Depending on how this wraps up in the final volume of the trilogy and whether BL have the balls to do it, could very much take the 40K story the next step further. Please read this book. Get excited about it. It is classic Abnett. It is characters you grew up reading. He is giving Eisenhorn and Ravenor the fitting send off that they have always deserved. I can't wait for Pandemonium.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Dawfydd Kelly

    WARNING - Here Be Potential Spoilers Okay, first off I have to say that I am extremely glad that I did not get around to reading the first book of the Bequin Trilogy - Pariah - until it got re-released alongside Penitent. I cannot imagine the agony of having to wait so long between volumes (although saying that it was a helluva agap between Salvations Reach and Warmaster so I can relate) but, my gods, the WAY this book ends. If you have any knowledge of 40k lore, and especially of the Horus Heres WARNING - Here Be Potential Spoilers Okay, first off I have to say that I am extremely glad that I did not get around to reading the first book of the Bequin Trilogy - Pariah - until it got re-released alongside Penitent. I cannot imagine the agony of having to wait so long between volumes (although saying that it was a helluva agap between Salvations Reach and Warmaster so I can relate) but, my gods, the WAY this book ends. If you have any knowledge of 40k lore, and especially of the Horus Heresy, then this book will have you making all sorts of odd noises at each aside and revelation. And it's quite clear that it could not have been written earlier as Dan has cast his net wide across the breadth of the lore, using material that honestly did not exist before the last decade. But oh my. This book is truly something special. Beta Bequin continues to be one of the more fascinating protagonists of the Black Library, and how she contrasts to & plays off the legendary Inquisitors Eisenhorn and Ravenor is immensely satisfying to follow. And the mysteries of Queen Mab & The Yellow King just get more and more complex as the layers get stripped away. I hope the gap between Penitent and the finale of the Bequin Trilogy - Pandemonium - is not as long as the wait following Pariah, but I can safely say that however long it is I will be here for it, hoping that it can stick the landing.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Gareth

    This was a great read. While in theory a long wait between 1 and 2, at least I re-read Pariah more recently, so didn't feel too bad. A lot of fascinating scenes in here, and very interesting surprises, especially having read many of the Horus Heresy books - some surprises probably wouldn't have as much impact if didn't. Compared to Pariah, I think more balanced view of Eisenhorn and Ravenor here, which made me happier as well, though does show the flaws of both characters quite well here as well. This was a great read. While in theory a long wait between 1 and 2, at least I re-read Pariah more recently, so didn't feel too bad. A lot of fascinating scenes in here, and very interesting surprises, especially having read many of the Horus Heresy books - some surprises probably wouldn't have as much impact if didn't. Compared to Pariah, I think more balanced view of Eisenhorn and Ravenor here, which made me happier as well, though does show the flaws of both characters quite well here as well. Beta Bequin is a great character here, really coming into her own as well, and still get to see the other characters we have got to know, though they are a little more in the background this time round, and some very interesting new characters as well. A lot of intrigue and action, nicely balanced, and some good slow burning suspense at times as well, especially with the parallel running plot threads that were occurring near the end. Very much though a middle book of a trilogy, so really want book 3 to read now, hopefully it won't be as long a wait this time for the next book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    J.C. Stearns

    Can't think of anything else I could have wanted. (Vague spoilers ahead.) The series was titled Ravenor vs Eisenhorn from the jump, so I had a good idea what was in store, and Dan Abnett doesn't disappoint. The conflict plays out exactly how you think it should between the two warring Inquisitors, but doesn't for a second shrink away from an even larger plot, drawing story elements from the author's twenty years of literary history in the setting. At the same time he doesn't forget that it's the Can't think of anything else I could have wanted. (Vague spoilers ahead.) The series was titled Ravenor vs Eisenhorn from the jump, so I had a good idea what was in store, and Dan Abnett doesn't disappoint. The conflict plays out exactly how you think it should between the two warring Inquisitors, but doesn't for a second shrink away from an even larger plot, drawing story elements from the author's twenty years of literary history in the setting. At the same time he doesn't forget that it's the characters that make us fall in love with a book. There are some great moments of reflection and introspection, or Greek-chorus-like callouts where one character will perfectly encapsulate another's core being, flaws and all. Mysteries are resolved, and a whole lot more are teased. I can't wait for the third one.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kyle Kozlowski

    Wow, this was great! I don't know what I expected but this blew it out of the water. I am so glad I got the collectors version of it. Dan has nailed it, he found his voice with Bequin, and the twists and the turns were great. It's amazing to see the whole cast from the last books at it again, with all their faults and complaints and beefs with each other. The story at first feels a bit slow, but it quickly picks up the pace and keeps a nice pace that leaves you wanting more every time you set it Wow, this was great! I don't know what I expected but this blew it out of the water. I am so glad I got the collectors version of it. Dan has nailed it, he found his voice with Bequin, and the twists and the turns were great. It's amazing to see the whole cast from the last books at it again, with all their faults and complaints and beefs with each other. The story at first feels a bit slow, but it quickly picks up the pace and keeps a nice pace that leaves you wanting more every time you set it down. The story works and has a twist that I wouldn't have guessed. If you liked the Eishenhorn books and the Revenor then you have to pick up this series because it keeps getting better.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Winston

    The greater series is largely solid and frequently exceptional. While somewhat transparent here or there, this might easily be the best of them all. Dan Abnett manages to perfectly pace what I think would be a challenge to any writer. Everything from the small to titanic rings relevant and interesting but regardless the monolith of events piling on top of each other, instead of becoming exhausting he meticulously builds further and further towards a grand finale equitable to the Fall of Cadia.

  14. 4 out of 5

    David

    The bequin novels are far different from both the Essendon and ravenor trilogies and have to say surpass them for me. The pacing and mood really does it for me, the city of Queen Mab seem unsure of itself and its people seem to be damaged in some way. Loved the mystery of the king in yellow and his ultimate goal. Can't wait for the last book The bequin novels are far different from both the Essendon and ravenor trilogies and have to say surpass them for me. The pacing and mood really does it for me, the city of Queen Mab seem unsure of itself and its people seem to be damaged in some way. Loved the mystery of the king in yellow and his ultimate goal. Can't wait for the last book

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jacob Bennike

    I didn’t much like it’s predecessor, but this is probably the most interesting 40k novel and amongst the best warhammer books that I have read. It’s cliffhanger ending sells it short. This is my first trilogy, and I only picked it up with its predecessor when they recently became available as audiobooks, but I sure hope it doesn’t take 8+ years before we get an ending.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Anders Björkman

    Great book! I just hope we don't have to wait many years for Mr Abnett to finish the third part. Comparing this to many of his earlier works, some of which are masterpieces, he is still growing as an author, which this book is a testament to. Well done Mr Abnett, a well deserved 5 star rating from me. Great book! I just hope we don't have to wait many years for Mr Abnett to finish the third part. Comparing this to many of his earlier works, some of which are masterpieces, he is still growing as an author, which this book is a testament to. Well done Mr Abnett, a well deserved 5 star rating from me.

  17. 5 out of 5

    John Poole

    About 8 years after the first book, Abnett is back. In truth, this doesn't feel like the usual grim dark 40k novel but something perhaps a bit more nuanced. Good fun although without the bombasity of his earlier work. About 8 years after the first book, Abnett is back. In truth, this doesn't feel like the usual grim dark 40k novel but something perhaps a bit more nuanced. Good fun although without the bombasity of his earlier work.

  18. 4 out of 5

    RecursiveHaiku

    First of all: This book is amazing! Second: This might be the biggest twist in the history of literature.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Phillip Wyrick

    Slow to start up and ends with a cliffhanger. I felt like there could've been more to this book. Slow to start up and ends with a cliffhanger. I felt like there could've been more to this book.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Skywatcher Adept

    The name of Penitent is: BOOK OF THE YEAR 2021. [119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 + 119 - 2 (the volume of the book) = 2021]

  21. 4 out of 5

    Daeron

    That was cool, bring on Pandemonium! Just don't take years this time please. 4.5 That was cool, bring on Pandemonium! Just don't take years this time please. 4.5

  22. 5 out of 5

    Joanne

    4.5

  23. 5 out of 5

    Hilary Scroggie

    Sometimes you just really feel like a Byzantine science fiction Lovecraftian medieval detective thriller that's actually a dysfunctional family drama, you know? Sometimes you just really feel like a Byzantine science fiction Lovecraftian medieval detective thriller that's actually a dysfunctional family drama, you know?

  24. 5 out of 5

    Fred Baumgärtner

    Holy. Shit.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Liam Loftus

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Well I certainly didn't see 'that' coming Well I certainly didn't see 'that' coming

  26. 4 out of 5

    Philip

  27. 4 out of 5

    Harish

  28. 4 out of 5

    Peter Drummond

  29. 4 out of 5

    Artem Parakhine

  30. 4 out of 5

    Dave Kirlin

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