Category Archives: Fantasy

Starfest 2017 Schedule

Hey everyone.  Just a quick post.  Here’s my Starfest schedule for this year:

Friday, April 21
 8:00pm
Saturday, April 22
8:30am
Sunday, April 23
12:30pm
Starfest is this weekend (April 21-23) in Denver.  They’ve got a lot of neat events and guests, so if you’re in the area, I recommend checking it out!

Free Short Stories

The Freeport Mutineers, by Kal Spriggs
The Freeport Mutineers, by Kal Spriggs

Starting today and running through Monday, February 20th, I’ll be offering The Freeport Mutineers and Look to the Stars for free.  Most of my readers will already have free copies, but in case you’ve missed them before, here you are!

The Freeport Mutineers

Young Midshipman Wachter is about to face the rope.

Troubled by the rumors spread throughout the Southern Fleet, the young officer turned to the Marines and Sailors under his command… yet he and they were betrayed, arrested, and convicted of mutiny, all under the orders of the ambitious Lord Admiral Hennings.

Faced with the prospect of not only his own death, but that of the men under his command, Wachter must somehow find a way to do the right thing. Yet there is little hope with he and his men jailed, weaponless, and condemned, while the town of Freeport lies under martial law and the threat of dark sorcery.

Only one course lays open to him, to break his oaths and to swear allegiance to the cause of another, to become exactly what his enemies have accused him of being: a mutineer.

Look to the Stars
Look to the Stars, a short story by Kal Spriggs
Look to the Stars, a short story by Kal Spriggs

Mason McGann is a smuggler, a liar, and a cheat. With his ship impounded by customs, he figures he has no choice left but to auction off information about the lost Dreyfus Fleet.

But things are never what they seem when you hold information that can change the course of history.

 

Book Review: Fires of Caldarus

firesI’ve been a longtime fan of the comic series Crimson Dark, which is sort of a military science fiction version of Firefly.  It’s fun, has good humor, and has a solid story.  The graphics have also steadily grown better and better.  If you’re a fan of science fiction, I can’t suggest it enough.

Needless to say, I was excited to learn that the author, David C Simon, has also written a book.  Fires of Caldarus is a young adult fantasy novel, set in a new universe and it’s really fantastic.

The story is somewhat reminiscent of Robin McKinley’s The Blue Sword.   The main character has elements of magic that she doesn’t understand, that she can’t understand without breaking with the acceptable norms of her society.

Fires of Cadlarus is exciting and it’s a page turner, the reader is swept along with Nemara as she tries to learn about her past, about her magic, and at the same time, tries to protect herself and her father.  There are elements of dramatic tension, as she encounters dangerous authority figures who, if they knew what she was, would torture her.

There is violence and there are some dark themes in the book.  But there’s also a great deal of hope.  There’s great elements of friendship and trust.  It’s a fun read and I’d love to see more books from David Simon (especially in this world and series).  I highly recommend this book.

COSine 2017

For those in Colorado, I’ll be attending COSine, a Colorado Springs Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention.

It’s a fun little convention, if you haven’t been before.  I highly recommend it.  There’s always a few excellent authors in attendance and they have a variety of great topics for their panels.

My schedule:

SATURDAY  
11-noon    Characters in Combat (Breckenridge)
5:15 – 7pm   Author Reception and Mass Signing (Ballroom)

SUNDAY
10-11am   How much does that Star Cruiser cost – fictional economics  (Breckenridge)

The author reception and signing is particularly fun, so if you don’t get a chance to do much else, I recommend that especially.

Kal’s December 2016 Forecast

December is here!  Happy Holidays to those who celebrate.

I’ve finished The Temple of Light, fifth book of the Shadow Space Chronicles.  I’m putting the finishing touches on the first round of edits and hope to have it to my beta readers soon.  With the holidays, that means it probably won’t be ready to publish until early January.

I’m really excited to get this book out.  It’s got a fantastic cover coming, tons of action, and I think everyone’s going to love it.  I’m going to create a launch page on Facebook, and I’ll link that here as soon as I do.

Speaking of the Shadow Space Chronicles, I’m reviewing the audiobook narration for The Prodigal Emperor, the third book of the series.  I’m hoping to have that reviewed this week and that means it’ll hopefully be released before Christmas, so perfect timing for listening to spaceships exploding over the holidays.

As far as writing, I’m currently working on Heir to the Fallen Duchy, book four of the Eoriel Saga.  This is going to be a big book.  As the quest to repair the Starblade begins, the main characters will face all new threats (and some old enemies we love to hate).   I’m having a blast writing it and I can’t wait to finish it and get it out to all of you.

That’s all for now.   I hope to have some book and movie reviews for everyone soon.  Thanks for reading!

Movie Review: Doctor Strange

Things get a little strange...
Things get a little strange…

I saw Doctor Strange.  It was awesome.  Go see it.  Review done.

Wait, you want more?  Fine…  Plot-wise, it’s basically Marvel’s standard formula.  Put a lot of arrogance, a lot of talent, and ridiculously good looks into a main character package, stir in some terrible tragedy and a stretch of painful character growth and then add a dark-mirror villain.  Serve warm with chilled drinks.

The writing, though, is fantastic.  The pacing is perfect, there’s never a scene where I looked at my phone or watch to see how long was left.   I drank too much of my caffeinated beverage of choice and you know what? My butt was glued to the seat the entire time.   The lines and delivery are fantastic.  Benedict Wong was the best secondary character, his deadpan deliveries were fantastic.

The humor was varied and didn’t miss a beat.  The graphics were fantastic.  The characters were fun and engaging.  Tilda Swinton’s Ancient One was alien and powerful and highly sympathetic.  Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange was arrogant, abrasive, and utterly charming.

The end-credits scenes, particularly the first one, are fantastic and worth waiting for, even if you really need to use the restroom.  Stick it out, you won’t be disappointed.

Overall, this is a magnificent showing, Marvel Studios does what they do best: creating a massive universe and introducing new characters in fun and engaging ways.  Go see this one.  It doesn’t matter if you know nothing about Doctor Strange, it’s just a fun, entertaining movie where they got everything right.