Starting the books

Hey, im a long time Halo fan but I have never read the books. My gf told me she would like to try to get into Halo because i like it so much but she doesnt like gaming. I told her there was novels and she said she would really be interested in reading them. So I was wondering, in your opinion which books are the best written and easiest to get into with almost no knowledge of the universe. Also are there any I should avoid because they aren’t very good? Thanks Guys :smiley:

I like most of the Halo books but the best ones are the three written by Eric Nylund. Ghosts of Onyx is my personal favorite but those books most people read them in order of Fall of Reach,First Strike then Ghosts of Onyx. Though chronological order of all the books are Forerunner trilogy(Cryptum,Primordium,third book that hasn’t been released yet),Contact Harvest(this follows Johnson and the beginning of the war,Cole Protocol,Fall of Reach,The Flood(this one you can pass on it’s literally just Halo 1),First Strike,Ghosts of Onyx and lastly Kilo 5 Trilogy(Which these books I hate).

> I like most of the Halo books but the best ones are the three written by Eric Nylund. Ghosts of Onyx is my personal favorite but those books most people read them in order of Fall of Reach,First Strike then Ghosts of Onyx. Though chronological order of all the books are Forerunner trilogy(Cryptum,Primordium,third book that hasn’t been released yet),Contact Harvest(this follows Johnson and the beginning of the war,Cole Protocol,Fall of Reach,The Flood(this one you can pass on it’s literally just Halo 1),First Strike,Ghosts of Onyx and lastly Kilo 5 Trilogy(Which these books I hate).

basically this…

I would def read Fall of Reach first, if you don’t like that one, good chance you won’t get into any of the books.

This is my rank

1)Ghosts of Oynx
2)Fall of Reach
3)First Strike
4)Cryptum
5)Primordial
6)Cole Protocol

Start with The Fall of Reach(Definitive Edition).

Main series:

The Fall of Reach* -> The Flood* -> First Strike* -> Ghosts of Onyx -> Glasslands -> The Thursday War -> Next KT novel(Not out yet)

Forerunner Saga:

Cryptum -> Primordium -> Silentium(Not out yet)

Other:

Contact Harvest, The Cole Protocol, Evolutions, Uprising.

*Definitive Edition available for this book, I highly recommend getting the Definitive Editions when you can.

whats the difference whith the definitive edition

> whats the difference whith the definitive edition

The definitive editions are the “updated” books to link with what happened in Halo: Reach.

> > whats the difference whith the definitive edition
>
> The definitive editions are the “updated” books to link with what happened in Halo: Reach.

That means, less errors that the original had. Plus small extras, and a new bonus section at the end of it. There’s one for The Fall of Reach, The Flood, and First Strike.

Oh and if you want my opinion.
Let her read The Fall of Reach first, that kinda starts Master Chiefs(well the Spartan II story) story.

This what I would suggest as the best order to read the books in:

  1. Contact Harvest (as it explains the origins of the war with the Covenant, which is really important, so yeah, read this one first)

  2. The Fall of Reach (as it covers the origins of the Spartans)

  3. The Flood (it covers the events of the first game, and if your girlfriend doesn’t really want to play the games, it’s the perfect way to get the plot of the first one)

  4. First Strike (picks up directly after The Fall of Reach and The Flood end and carries on the story of the Spartans introduced in TFoR and Master Chief)

  5. Ghosts of Onyx (sequel to First Strike)

  6. Cole Protocol (though you could read it any time you want, I would probably read it as one of the earlier ones as it details more stuff about the Spartan Program and you see more of and learn more about Captain Keyes)

  7. And then I would read the Forerunner Saga/Trilogy: Cryptum, Primordium, and Silentium.

What you should avoid (whether you want to read it or not is up to you, but it should most definitely be read last of every as it sucks so very badly when it comes to the lore and sticking to what’s been established and so on) is the Glasslands Trilogy: Glasslands, Thursday War, and the as yet unnamed third book…unless you want a big headache from trying to bash your brains out I would suggest not reading it at all. The characterization for well established characters is completely thrown out and trampled on by the author, the Elites are derailed from the character development Bungie started doing for them after Halo 2…and in regards to the Elites the positive ending note in Halo 3 for the Elites and humanity is completely thrown down the crapper and Elites are made into evil sociopaths again that are just looking for a chance to kill off the human race…so regardless of whether your girlfriend (or you yourself if you start reading the books too) does decide to read it or not, make absolutely sure that it’s read last so that the way the universe is supposed to be understood is gotten first.

> This what I would suggest as the best order to read the books in:
>
> 1. Contact Harvest (as it explains the origins of the war with the Covenant, which is really important, so yeah, read this one first)
>
> 2. The Fall of Reach (as it covers the origins of the Spartans)
>
> 3. The Flood (it covers the events of the first game, and if your girlfriend doesn’t really want to play the games, it’s the perfect way to get the plot of the first one)
>
> 4. First Strike (picks up directly after The Fall of Reach and The Flood end and carries on the story of the Spartans introduced in TFoR and Master Chief)
>
> 5. Ghosts of Onyx (sequel to First Strike)
>
> 6. Cole Protocol (though you could read it any time you want, I would probably read it as one of the earlier ones as it details more stuff about the Spartan Program and you see more of and learn more about Captain Keyes)
>
> 7. And then I would read the Forerunner Saga/Trilogy: Cryptum, Primordium, and Silentium.
>
> What you should avoid (whether you want to read it or not is up to you, but it should most definitely be read last of every as it sucks so very badly when it comes to the lore and sticking to what’s been established and so on) is the Glasslands Trilogy: Glasslands, Thursday War, and the as yet unnamed third book…unless you want a big headache from trying to bash your brains out I would suggest not reading it at all. The characterization for well established characters is completely thrown out and trampled on by the author, the Elites are derailed from the character development Bungie started doing for them after Halo 2…and in regards to the Elites the positive ending note in Halo 3 for the Elites and humanity is completely thrown down the crapper and Elites are made into evil sociopaths again that are just looking for a chance to kill off the human race…so regardless of whether your girlfriend (or you yourself if you start reading the books too) does decide to read it or not, make absolutely sure that it’s read last so that the way the universe is supposed to be understood is gotten first.

Opinions opinions opinions. First off the first book that should be read should be The Fall of Reach NOT Contact Harvest. The Fall of Reach was the first Halo novel made, it introduces the reader to the UNSC and the Covenant and is a better starting than any other novel. And Glasslands and The Thursday War don’t suck, the idea that every single Elite would be happy and cheery with Humanity after a 30 year long war is ridiculous and completely idiotic. And remember before the KT novels we only saw Halsey through the eyes of the Spartans, a bit of a biased view I would say.

It’s a tough call to be honest, but here is my list.

Contact Harvest: Yes I understand Fall of Reach was the first book written, but this is still a good entrance point. You get background information on the Insurrection and the Covenant’s culture. It is also the start of the war.

The Fall of Reach: This details the origins of the Spartans and jumps around all over the war until the aforementioned fall of Reach.

Cole Protocol: This is set before the fall of Reach, but gives more insight on the rebels, Covenant, Captain Keyes and Grey Team.

The Flood: It covers Combat Evolved’s story and all the behind-the-scenes stuff the game doesn’t show like the ODSTs on the ring and an Elite’s quest to hunt down the Master Chief.

First Strike: This is after Combat Evolved and explains how Chief gets to Earth and what he does before then.

Ghosts of Onyx: This details the end of Halo 2 when the Covenant breaks apart and talks about the Spartan-IIIs and the planet of Onyx.

After that go into the Forerunner Saga and then I’d recommend going into the Kilo-Five trilogy by Traviss, do this so you can get a general understanding of the characters first through the other books then expose yourself to different view. It isn’t one I agree with in the slightest, but the Traviss books do have relevance for Halo 4 and beyond so they may as well be read.

Read in order of Publication date and read all of them. Start with The Fall or Reach, then The Flood, then First Strike, etc.

> Opinions opinions opinions. First off the first book that should be read should be The Fall of Reach NOT Contact Harvest. The Fall of Reach was the first Halo novel made, it introduces the reader to the UNSC and the Covenant and is a better starting than any other novel. And Glasslands and The Thursday War don’t suck, the idea that every single Elite would be happy and cheery with Humanity after a 30 year long war is ridiculous and completely idiotic. And remember before the KT novels we only saw Halsey through the eyes of the Spartans, a bit of a biased view I would say.

So, let me get this straight, you’re going to attack me because I don’t agree with you that The Fall of Reach should be the first book read? That’s a really silly reason to do anything! What does it matter to you if I think Contact Harvest is the better starting point or not? And just because something is the first one made does not automatically make it the most informative and containing the most backstory…really all TFoR does is give the backstory and background to the Spartans and to a limited extent Dr. Halsey, and really that’s it. We don’t learn that much about the UNSC, we don’t learn anything at all about the Covenant. I think Contact Harvest is the better choice for all of this as it actually does give plenty of background and backstory to the UNSC, as well as the Insurrection the Spartans were created to fight and how much of a threat they were; as well as giving us our key insight into the Covenant and how and why exactly the whole war started. I learned more from Contact Harvest about the different factions and their backgrounds and so on than I did with TFoR…and TFoR was where I started out too, it’s an OK place to start as it does give you some insight, but not very much…Contact Harvest is a better introductory book imo. And what does it matter where someone thinks a new reader should start?

From a purely formula standpoint (grammar, structure, etc.) the Glasslands Trilogy is just fine, and from just the basics and formula, Traviss is just fine as a write (I never said she wasn’t), I mean, if she wasn’t then she wouldn’t have gotten hired by anyone as a writer in the first place or been published for her original fiction…when it comes to writing for someone else’s story though, she is awful. She doesn’t stay within established lore or characterization, doesn’t research the story and won’t read the books, play the games, or watch the movies (however many of those may apply to the series in question), and she has openly admitted to rebuilding and changing already established characters (such as Halsey, Parangosky, Mendez, Lord Hood, etc.) as she saw fit and to whatever struck her fancy. That is just not how you write a story or proper writing at all if you’re hired to work with someone else’s story and characters, that’s very poor writing.

As for the Elites, I think you need to re-read every single piece of literature (game manual, book, or otherwise) ever put out after or around Halo 2 and close to Halo 3 again. Because they made it quite clear that the majority of the Elites never hated humans at all and actually had a whole great big load of respect for them. The minority (such as Ripa Moramee) were the ones who hated humans at all…and as I said, they’re the minority. Elites don’t have any kind of issue or beef with humans…humanity is where you will find your difficulties and issues with peace coming from, not the other way around. And no, we saw Halsey from a neutral standpoint, Nylund didn’t try to persuade us about Halsey one way or the other…we were left to our own interpretations of the character. Traviss on the other hand rams her opinions and take on Halsey down the readers’ throats and doesn’t give them any kind of choice in the matter, even when presenting the other side of an opinion or argument in fiction (unless it’s the personal thoughts of a character), you still need to acknowledge and at least include a token representation of the other side of it, even Nylund did that, in all three of his books we had Colonel Ackerson and in GoO we had the introduction of Parangosky, Traviss however doesn’t present any opposing views at all (either for the Elites or Halsey)…you only get Traviss own poorly disguised opinions coming out of the characters as her puppets and mouthpiece, rather than keeping the characters true to their previous characterizations, Traviss derailed them into spewing her own opinions rather than the character’s own. Like take Mendez for instance, he never hated Halsey and he got along just fine with her mere minutes ago in universe time. He suddenly goes from Ghosts of Onyx to working professionally with her and not hating her at all to turning into a whiny, immature brat with PMS when it comes to Halsey.

That’s all I’m going to say about the subject of Glasslands Trilogy, I don’t want to derail the thread…if you want to continue then do it over PM, I’m not responding if it’s here in this thread, because I said, I don’t want to derail it.

> It’s a tough call to be honest, but here is my list.
>
> Contact Harvest: Yes I understand Fall of Reach was the first book written, but this is still a good entrance point. You get background information on the Insurrection and the Covenant’s culture. It is also the start of the war.
>
> The Fall of Reach: This details the origins of the Spartans and jumps around all over the war until the aforementioned fall of Reach.
>
> Cole Protocol: This is set before the fall of Reach, but gives more insight on the rebels, Covenant, Captain Keyes and Grey Team.
>
> The Flood: It covers Combat Evolved’s story and all the behind-the-scenes stuff the game doesn’t show like the ODSTs on the ring and an Elite’s quest to hunt down the Master Chief.
>
> First Strike: This is after Combat Evolved and explains how Chief gets to Earth and what he does before then.
>
> Ghosts of Onyx: This details the end of Halo 2 when the Covenant breaks apart and talks about the Spartan-IIIs and the planet of Onyx.
>
> After that go into the Forerunner Saga and then I’d recommend going into the Kilo-Five trilogy by Traviss, do this so you can get a general understanding of the characters first through the other books then expose yourself to different view. It isn’t one I agree with in the slightest, but the Traviss books do have relevance for Halo 4 and beyond so they may as well be read.

If you wanted to have the perfect reading list in terms of chronological events, you’d have to stop reading Fall of Reach halfway through and read the Cole Protocol first. The thing about Nylund’s novels was that they kept randomly jumping twenty years into the future or past. Except for First Strike, which mostly stay contained in it’s own setting.

> Read in order of Publication date and read all of them. Start with The Fall or Reach, then The Flood, then First Strike, etc.

I wouldn’t do that. Contact Harvest is bursting at the seams with backstory that truly enriches the entire universe.

I think it’s best to read them in the order of release, substituting the rereleases of The Fall of Reach, The Flood, and First Strike for the originals. As long as you remember that in the rerelease of The Fall of Reach for dates at the beginning of chapters the year 2552 is misprinted as 2542.

There’s a problem though, the novels are very closely tied to the games. You’ll miss out on a lot of the story if you don’t play them.

Personally, I would suggest reading the fall of reach as well. It sets a great tone for the universe to follow!

Regarding kilo5, all I will say is be mindful who is in the driver seat with the direction the story takes. 343. Kilo and forerunner stories were penned to set context for Halo 4. I I agree I would have handled Halsey differently, but I enjoy her handling of the covenant.