Goodreads Description of CassaStar...
Slated to train as a Cosbolt fighter pilot, Byron is determined to prove his worth and begin a new life as he sets off for the Moon base of Guaard. Haunted by a past tragedy, Bassa eventually sees through Byron's tough exterior and insolence. When a secret talent is revealed during training, Bassa feels compelled to help Byron achieve his full potential.
My Humble Opinion...
Alex wrote a sci-fi novel that will appeal to more than sci-fi readers. CassaStar is a character driven story delivered to the reader through a sci-fi universe. It is not bogged down with the world building detail that sci-fi and fantasy books typically have, but paints enough of a picture and lets the reader fill in the rest. Alex has written a streamlined story that propels the plot forward at an enjoyable pace from beginning to end.
CassaStar primarily focuses on the relationship between the rookie, maverick pilot, Byron, and his experienced and highly decorated instructor/navigator, Bassa. From the beginning, Bassa sees Byron as his late younger brother and takes a special interest in him. Byron enters the flight training program as a cocky loner and an extremely gifted pilot with the rare gift of “jumping” (teleporting). Preparing for battle against an alien race called the Vindicarn, the men are dependent on each other for survival. Pilots and navigators communicate through telepathy, allowing unfiltered access to the other’s suppressed thoughts, memories, and fears. Trust is essential. But trust has to be earned, which is how the relationship between the two men is tested and strengthened throughout the story.
As much as I enjoyed CassaStar, I would like to know more about the Vindicarn. The closest we, the readers, come to them is from a spaceship away in battle, never up close. They are a faceless villain. But that would just add description, not change the story. CassaStar is a powerful story of friendship and trust, honor and self-sacrifice. Alex takes a familiar and universal storyline and builds a powerful and unique story. The second book in the trilogy, CassaFire, is currently available, and I’m looking forward to continuing the journey.
A few minutes with Alex...
Thanks so much for joining me today! You are a giant in the blogging world, with an impressive list of loyal followers, and starting your third book, CassaStorm. So I very much appreciate you taking a few minutes out of your busy day to talk with me.
What were your biggest influences and inspiration for CassaStar?
The biggest influences were science fiction movies and shows such as Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars, and Buck Rogers. I liked the idea of adventure in space. Galactica probably influenced me the most, as I really liked the Vipers and battle sequences. There’s also a bit of Star Trek in there as well, because the human element is the most important.
Looking back to when you just started your blog, two short years ago, how did you go about attacking the blogging world? What was your experience like just starting out?
I had no idea what I was doing! I started my blog on November 9, 2009 with a post that basically said “Hi, I’m Alex.” I found a couple nice bloggers who helped me out and I started following other bloggers. In the beginning, I followed a lot of science fiction bloggers, but for some reason wasn’t connecting. After six months, I had a little over thirty followers. (Sounds depressing, doesn’t it?)Finding Arlee Bird and joining the first A to Z Challenge changed everything. I finished April with over eighty followers and finally found my groove. I realized the easiest thing for me to talk about was my passions, so rather than focus on the fact I was a writer soon to be an author, I started blogging about movies, music, tech stuff, and other geeky pursuits. I held my first blogfest, the Movie Dirty Dozen, and it all snowballed from that point.
Where did the “Ninja Captain” come from?
That title came from my followers almost two years ago. I guess because I write science fiction, someone dubbed me the Captain. (Old Kitty, perhaps?) The Ninja came from my ability to get in and comment fast. (At least, that’s what I remember!) I’ve been given many other titles since then, but those two stuck. And now I really am the Ninja Captain of an army of followers. Just blows me away!
Thank you again, Alex! It has been a real pleasure sharing a post with you. Below are links to Alex's blog and Twitter, and information on CassaStar and the second installment, CassaFire. Be sure to check them both out. Thank you for reading. Thank you to Alex. I'll do my best to stop by your blogs this weekend, and I'll be right back here first thing on Monday. Have a wonderful holiday weekend, everyone!
Alex J. Cavanaugh
Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The author lives in the Carolinas with his wife.
CassaStar by Alex J. Cavanaugh
6x9 Trade paperback, 246 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Science fiction - space opera/adventure
Print ISBN 978-0-9816210-6-7 $15.95
EBook ISBN 978-0-9827139-3-8 $2.99
Book Trailer - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67YBjQve00U
“…calls to mind the youthful focus of Robert Heinlein’s early military sf, as well as the excitement of space opera epitomized by the many Star Wars novels. Fast-paced military action and a youthful protagonist make this a good choice for both young adult and adult fans of space wars.” - Library Journal
CassaFire by Alex J. Cavanaugh
6x9 Trade paperback, 240 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Science fiction - space opera/adventure
Print ISBN 978-0-9827139-4-5 $15.95
EBook ISBN 978-0-9827139-6-9 $4.99Book Trailer - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qa6VINRGtyE