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Lemartes: Guardian of the Lost

4715 Views 37 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  Brother Lucian
So with the deadline approaching, who here has completed the service stud challenge and earned themselves a copy of Lemartes: Guardian of the Lost, and what purchases did you make to earn a copy??

I earned my sixth stud today, these were my purchases in the challenge;

G&F Kinslayer and Rebirth: First Edition (1st)
The Fall of Altdorf, Wolf Hunt (CD) and Sagas of the Wolf (CD) (2nd)
The Lord of the End Times, Knights of the Imperium and Heart of Rage (CD) (3rd)
G&F Slayer, The Shape of the Hunt (CD) and Masque of Vyle (4th)
Adeptus Mechanicus: Skitarius (5th)
Archaon: Lord of Chaos, Kharn: Eater of Worlds and Howl of the Banshee/The Path Forsaken (6th)

So in the end I have not bought anything that I wouldn't have bought eventually, apart from maybe Sagas of the Wolf and (though only after listening to it) The Shape of the Hunt which was rather poor. But that's a moot point now, Lemartes will be shipped out next week and I am quite looking forward to reading it. That said though, if this thing turns out to be a novella that has been improperly labelled as a novel (like Tallarn: Ironclad) I will be livid.

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Look, no offense, but should anyone really be surprised by the length of Mephiston? As someone else mentioned, the preceding two entries in the same series were of considerably shorter length than most Black Library novels. You have to take that into consideration when making a financial commitment that probably exceeded £300/$400.

If you were going to spend that money on Black Library products anyways, then Lemartes is pure bonus and any disappointment as to its length has to take that into consideration. If you spent more than you normally would have, though, then I would argue you needed to do more research.

The Talon of Horus, for instance, was the first novel in an upcoming series; Sabbat Crusade was an anthology billed as a sequel to another Gaunt's Ghosts anthology, which itself was the same length as a novel. In both cases, there was reason to expect something with substantial word count. Lemartes, though?
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Guys, I feel your pain... but I'm - sorry to be blunt - not interested in a debate on whether or not Lemartes deserves a certain word count. I'm simply pointing out that:

1. The preceding two works of the same format (Arjac, Mephiston) were much shorter than normal novels;
2. That there has been an obvious shift toward higher prices for "exclusive" and "enhanced" formats, and audio dramas.

Given those two things, I never thought that Lemartes was going to be a substantial read. "Novel" or not in length, the precedent never led me to think it was going to be huge. I guess I just assumed Annandale went over the expected word count within the time he was allowed, and Black Library saw it as a bonus. Bad advertising? Yeah, probably. I guess Black Library could argue that the definition of a novel (in terms of word count) will vary by person, but all the same they had to know that Lemartes was shorter than any other novel they've released thus far (to my knowledge).

Still, I stand by my earlier words: if you spent £300/$400 to get an "exclusive" book that probably would have gone for £45 or more for free, then you needed to be more cautious with your investment. When you get into paying a premium (£45 or more for a book certainly qualifies as such) for items that are meant to be collectible, value and prices get incredibly muddled. I genuinely feel bad for those who spent more than they normally woulds to get Lemartes and were left disappointed.
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Lord of the Night,

Where the length of a novel is concerned, I'm pretty sure Black Library wouldn't have advertised Lemartes as a novel if it didn't technically meet the definition. So again, I go back to my earlier point, which is that Black Library wasn't cranking out a big word count for these character-driven entries... and that there has been a decisive shift toward premium prices for products whose biggest feature is collectability/limited availability. With the exception of Talon of Horus and Sabbat Crusade (both of which came from excellent authors and whose context indicated a significant word count/page number), not a single Limited Edition thus far has made me think "this book will be huge and/or worth the price of admission."

So believe me, I genuinely feel bad for anyone who spent more than they normally would have to get the six Service Studs and Lemartes... but I still think they should have been more... reserved in their expectations?
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Lord of the Night,

As to your question, I have no idea. Are they the exact same length?

As to your assertion, I agree. While I don't doubt Black Library has arguments as to why a "Limited Edition", "First Edition", etc, product is worth £45 or more, I also don't doubt they are aware that it stings quite a few people when they pay two or three times the price of a novel for a novella of half the size.

Black Library made a calculated business decision that is based on the fact that their customer base can be relied upon to purchase limited/exclusive products at a premium price in an amount sufficient to justify said pricing scheme. The Black Library Loyalty Scheme is part of that. Now, if the trend for the company is toward increasingly expensive entries that are also increasingly disappointing insofar as the quality/quantity of their content is concerned, one can't be surprised when their purchase falls within that trend. There has to come a time when the customer votes with their wallet.

I'll grant you that I have a very easy time preaching form my pulpit: my family life (toddler and infant increasingly trying to get their hands on their dad's prized possessions) and professional life (military guy on the go) mean that I've overwhelmingly bought eBooks from Black Library. I've resented the price creep that has seen me pay double what I was paying just a couple of years ago for full-length novels. At the same time, though, that price has remained low enough to not affect me... and I recognize that $17-19 for something that will occupy me for several days (just on the first read) isn't that bad a deal (assuming it's a good read).

I get that most people don't like eBooks, but - short of going to a Special Friend on the Internet - I wonder if that's not a better short-term solution than continuing to spend two or three times that amount of money on things that may piss you off.
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Yes, they are. Both Deathstorm and Lemartes are 173 pages long. Yet they are advertised differently.

I don't trust data that way. Too easy to lose. I have a friend who lost every single book he owed because his kindle broke. And i've lost all the data on my laptop due to a faulty hardrive.
I don't know about Kindles. All I can tell you is that I could break my tablet a million times, but it wouldn't matter because you can download any eBook you bought from Black Library or iTunes as many times as you want. Unless their servers go down, my purchase is safe. Now, you still have to deal with a broken laptop or a broken tablet, but that's a different issue altogether!

I could be completely wrong. Maybe Black Library wouldn't give a damn if people shifted to eBooks in mass numbers. I don't think that would be the case, though. I can only imagine that they went the novella/exclusive/limited route because their sales studies indicated they could profit from it and that people would buy that stuff. Thus, I can only imagine that if people stop buying that stuff then Black Library will be forced to scale back on those products (to a point where, you know, they become limited again :wink: ).
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