Book Review – The Guns of Tanith

Gaunt’s Ghosts – 5 – By Dan Abnett

Continuing my re-reading of the Dan Abnett series – Gaunts Ghosts – next up is book 5, The Guns of Tanith.

‘The heretical forces of Chaos fight back in the Sabbat Worlds Crusade, cutting off Imperial forces. Gaunt and his men must recapture the key world Phantine, in order to save the Emperor’s beleaguered forces.

Tanith have been joined by Hivers from Verghast – and it’s rapidly becoming a noun for the new soldiers. In The Guns of Tanith Gaunt and his ghosts find themselves fighting on another planet, and being picked for a dangerous mission. They must infiltrate the chaos defenders, find their leader and kill him.

Four teams of Ghosts are assembled to take on the task, whilst the rest of the regiment stay fighting the arch enemy and preparing for the assault. Meanwhile Caffran is accused of killing a civilian and Gaunt and Hawk must try to get him free… but will they treat the Verghastites differently? The Regiment must be as one, but is that possible?

If you’re this far into the series, it’s safe to say you already enjoy the style – and it is unashamedly page turning pulp fiction – and will be eager to read Guns of Tanith… and you definitely should. Dan Abnett’s great idea to bring in new blood in the form of the Verghastites allows new stories (rivalry, and integration) that wouldn’t have been possible with just the Ghosts, but it also answers the question on many readers minds — what happens when they all die? This is the Imperial Guard after all.

The side plot involving Caffran is well done, and a welcome relief from the bullets, lasguns, and explosions — although they are included aplenty in the main plot. Meanwhile the plot races forward, with stories of daring from the infiltrators but just enough gaps in their stories that you are left wondering how exactly they proceed – a technique I really enjoyed and could be very useful as a plot hook if you like RPGs in Warhammer 40k

Another great novel and a good read.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

— Declan

Previous Gaunt’s Ghosts Book Reviews on Woehammer:

First & Only
Honour Guard

Check out the Woehammer Book Review Archive for more reviews!

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