William King's Space Wolf novels have helped shape the world of WH40K. This omnibus collection contains the first three (of five) and would serve as an excellent place for WH40K first-timers to get an introduction to the world and setting. Through reading of the ascension of Ragnar Blackmane and by witnessing his trials and battles throughout the Imperium, much can be learned about space marines and the WH40K universe.
The first book of this omnibus edition, Space Wolf (Warhammer 40,000: Space Wolf), chronicles the rise of Ragnar. From a young member of a small islander tribe of Fenris to the glory of an ultimate warrior of the Imperium, this is a tale of growing and learning. Because Ragnar is devoid of any knowledge about the universe and proceeds to learn and observe, this book serves as an excellent introductory book to the WH40K world. Principally, this first book serves as an introduction to Ragnar and the Space Wolves, and nothing much more. Almost like a primer for the next books in the series.
The second book, Ragnar's Claw (Space Wolves), tells of Ragnar's first adventure off-world of Fenris. He and his claw are sent to assist an inquisitor on a mission to collect an ancient artifact and save a hive city from a deadly plague. Their mission takes them through vast distances to fight orks, genestealers, and daemons in a multitude of different environments. The character of Ragnar is further developed, with him being critically wounded only to be revived with a new fear of mortality. There is an undercurrent of uneasiness throughout the book that is only explained in the last couple of chapters as the heroes discover the true puppeteer of their mission.
The third book of the trilogy, Grey Hunter (Space Wolves), is my personal favorite. It has a much more epic feel with a heavy involvement by many Imperial forces, including a battalion of Titans. The planet of Garm, an industrial world that has special ties to the Space Wolves and houses a Shrine to Russ, has entered a civil war in which the forces of Chaos seem on the verge or bringing about the resurrection of the Thousand Sons Chaos Marines. Nearly the whole Space Wolf chapter is mobilized for an immense invasion of the shrine world -where they find great adversity. The action and suspense of this final novel is the most intense of the three and caps off this omnibus edition in grand fashion.
The fighting scenes and descriptions of the Space Wolf Space Marines are excellent, and as Ragnar discovers the vastness of the Imperium the reader develops a better understanding too. Perhaps the best aspect of this book is the sheer epic feel. The multitude of enemies Ragnar encounters and the vast spaces he travels make this stand out as an excellent resource for those wishing to learn more about the WH40K world. The only complaints I have with these stories arise from the writing of King. He tends to over-use descriptive words and phrases, creating a very repetitive feel to some of the scenes. Overall, a must have for any WH40K fan and highly recommended for any fan of Sci-Fi.