I’m running a major sale on my World in Chains box set right now. Through this week, you can get all four books for only $2.99 instead of the usual $9.99. That’s four long books of epic fantasy adventure for the price of one. You can also read the entire series for free with a Kindle Unlimited subscription.
I’m going to try to get more active on this blog again. I’m also trying to read more books this year. I figured I could put the two together and put some book reviews up on the the blog.
Today, I’m reviewing Soldier Son, Book 1 of the Soldier Son trilogy by D.K. Holmberg. Holmberg is one of the bigger names today in indie fantasy, and he’s an insanely prolific author. Seriously, I envy his ability to publish enjoyable books so frequently.
Without further ado, here’s the review: (No, I didn’t intend for that to rhyme. It just happened.)
I picked this up because I’ve really enjoyed Holmberg’s Cloud Warrior saga. I’ve read most of the way through that series and wanted to try one of his other series.
Overall, I’d say this was a good read. It’s about on the same level as the first Cloud Warrior Saga book, which I enjoyed, but not as much as the later books in the series.
Everything I’ve read so far of Holmberg’s focuses on a single point-of-view character. This allows for a shorter novel and a more focused read, but as a reader of epic fantasy, I sometimes find myself wishing I could see the world from others’ viewpoints.
In this one, it took me a while to warm up to Endric, the main character. At the beginning, he seems like a petulant child even though he’s old enough to become a military officer. This was an intentional choice by Holmberg, though, intended to showcase Endric’s character development throughout the novel. And he does develop. I won’t give away too much because I like to keep my reviews spoiler-free.
Because of the narrow focus, I found that the worldbuilding came out gradually. I also enjoyed finding out answers to mysteries as the story progressed. This approach works well for me as a reader because there’s nothing I hate more than the beginning of a book being weighed down by worldbuilding infodumps. Thankfully, those were kept to a minimum here.
Toward the end, there was a fair amount of action. It wasn’t an explosion of action like in his Cloud Warrior books, but it was still enjoyable. Overall, the book was a little lighter on action than I’d expected for a military-focused book, and that’s part of the reason I didn’t quite love it.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy fantasy read, this book fits the bill perfectly. It’s not great by any means, but it’s the kind of popcorn fantasy I like reading to relax before bed.
I’m happy to report that I’ve been finding the time again to do some editing on The Gilded Empire. I’m also happy to report that the editing process is going very well.
I will not hit my initial deadline for the end of April, but I’m confident I can have it ready sometime during the month of May.
I’m really excited about this book because I feel it’s the best in the series so far. Empire of Chains started out as a pretty traditional fantasy. The Shadowed Land threw a few new wrinkles into that more traditional setup. The Gilded Empire takes the series in strange and unexpected directions, and it includes some of my favorite scenes in the entire series.
If you haven’t read Empire of Chains yet, I encourage you to give it a try. It’s only $0.99, or you can read it for free with Kindle Unlimited. I still expect to have the entire series released by the end of the summer, so it’s the perfect time to jump in.
I’ve decided to make a small change with my editing process and publishing schedule.
First, I’ll address the editing process. I’m currently hard at work revising The Gilded Empire, book 3 of World in Chains. I’m not sure when I’ll finish editing it, but I still think I can get it out there this spring. That may be delayed, however, because of the changes I’m making. Instead of revising just book 3, I’m also going to do some work on book 4 before, The Winds of Time, before releasing The Gilded Empire.
I don’t anticipate this taking that long. It’s mostly to refresh myself on all the craziness that happens in the fourth book before finishing up my edits of the third. This is necessary so that I deliver two books that don’t contradict one another. I did veer a bit away from my original plan in the fourth book, and I need to make sure those changes are reflected in the third.
I may end up doing something similar with the second and third books of Sunweaver. It’s one of the dangers of writing more by the seat of your pants. You can come up with some amazing twists you’d never think of while outlining, but it can make things a bit messy when it comes time to revise. That’s why I prefer writing an entire series before publishing any of it. I’m hoping I can get better at planning, though.
Now, on to the publishing schedule. I think it’s a better idea to publish the final two books of World in Chains before returning to the second and third books of Sunweaver. Part of this is my desire to get a finished series out there. Another part is that the worlds of World in Chains and Sunweaver are loosely connected. Anyone who’s finished The Shadowed Land and read Sunweaver might have noticed this.
The second book of Sunweaver does contain very minor spoilers for the ending of my World in Chains series. I don’t think this would result in anyone enjoying the ending of World in Chains any less, but I know some readers don’t like anything to be spoiled.
Personally, I think it can be enjoyable either way. If you read book 2 of Sunweaver, you’ll know that a certain character from World in Chains has survived the events of the series, but you won’t know how. So it’s a matter of which you’d prefer as a reader. Do you want to worry for the life of this character, or are you okay figuring out the mystery of how they end up in a completely different world?
In the end, I don’t think it’s a problem to read the series in whatever order you wish. I just thought I’d get the information out there and update everyone on why I’m changing my publishing schedule a little bit.
Based on these changes, I’d expect The Gilded Empire around April and The Winds of Time around July. After that, Fireweaver will probably come out around October and Sunlord near the beginning of 2019.
I may be able to speed up this schedule, but even these dates are tentative. There are a lot of other things on my plate between work and school and family commitments, and I can make no promises.
Thanks again for reading. If you want to be the first to know about new releases, you can sign up for my mailing list at the top right of the sidebar.
I’m starting to get nervous now. It’s not as bad as it was before the release of Empire of Chains, but any time you’re putting a new series out there, it’s anxiety-inducing.
Sunweaver will release tomorrow, January 11th. It will be available for $3.99 as an e-book. If you have Kindle Unlimited, you’ll be able to read it for free. I don’t have a print version yet. I need to get back with my cover designer for that. (I need to do the same for The Shadowed Land as well.)
Pre-order it below:
The sun is dying. The world has turned to ice. Only the Sunlord can keep humanity alive.
Deril was supposed to be the next Sunlord, following in his father’s footsteps. But it doesn’t matter how much Deril trains. He is no savior, just an ordinary Sunweaver, powerful but useless. But then Fireweavers kidnap his father, intending to use his Sunlord powers to free their mad god. Now Deril must infiltrate a secret Fireweaver organization and earn their trust. If he doesn’t, the mad god will kill all Sunweavers. Driven insane by centuries of imprisonment, he may even finish what he started…and destroy the sun entirely.
Rella is a Fireweaver living in secret. When her powers are discovered, she must flee to the frozen wasteland Fireweavers call home. There, she’ll come face-to-face with her family’s darkest secrets and with the plot to free the mad god. She has the chance to stop it, but first she’ll have to decide if she can support Sunweavers, the people who executed her mother. The people who would do the same to her without a thought.
Kadin is Lightless. He has no Sunweaving or Fireweaving talent. Sold into slavery by his abusive father, he struggles to survive under his cruel master. But when Kadin manifests strange abilities, he begins to suspect he isn’t as powerless as he once thought. He may even be the key to stopping the mad god’s return…but only if he first conquers the anger and darkness within him.
I finally finished the first draft of Godchild, the second book of The God War’s Chosen, which I expect to be a trilogy. I really don’t think I’ll have enough material left for two more books. I may end up with a slightly longer book, but I’m okay with that. The first two books in the series are relatively short for epic fantasies.
I’ve been working on this first draft on and off since June of 2017. Normally, I like to do the initial drafting process in a month or two. Six plus months is much longer than I like. Obviously, I had other distractions. I wasn’t even close to writing every day.
But it’s done, and that’s all that matters. I’ll probably take a short break from drafting now and turn my focus to getting Sunweaver ready for publication. It’s the first in a trilogy, so I want to make sure it’s the best it can be. It’s very close, and I anticipate releasing it before the end of the month.
As for The God War’s Chosen, I suppose I should describe this series a bit. It’s a gunpowder fantasy with a lot of magic. The gunpowder aspects show up a lot in the first book, and while they’re still there in the second, the magic starts to play a much more central role.
The two primary settings for the first book, Watersong, are a tropical island nation and a desert nation. These are very much a departure from what I’ve written previously, and that’s a good thing. When you get into the second book, you’ll start to see how this series is connected loosely to both World in Chains and Sunweaver.
Like Brandon Sanderson, I have an entire universe in which I write my stories. They are all connected to some degree, but I will always strive to write each series so that you can read it without reading anything else. I don’t want to intimidate readers with some crazy reading order. I may give a recommended reading order at some point (once I have more books out), but it is not necessary to read any one series before another.
Some of my future series may not be as strongly connected as my first three. I don’t want to risk getting repetitive with some of the story elements.
Also, as I stated in my last post, I have not yet determined what series I’ll write after I finish The God War’s Chosen. It may be something set in a new world, or I may finally pull enough ideas together to write sequel and prequel series in the same world as World in Chains.
As always, thanks for reading. If you have Kindle Unlimited and want to give Empire of Chains a chance, it’s free with your subscription. Even if you don’t have KU, the price is only $0.99. And if you enjoy it, please do sign up for my mailing list so that you’ll be the first to know about new releases and sales. There are links for both the mailing list and my books over in the sidebar on the right side of the website.
Today, I returned to editing Sunweaver, and it’s looking like I might be able to release it earlier than I originally anticipated. I previously did a lot of editing work on this one back when I was pursuing an agent and a publisher, so it doesn’t need much work before it’s ready for publication.
I have a few changes I have to make based on what happens in the second and third books, but those aren’t major changes.
I’m already 11% through what I expect to be the final draft and proofread, and I look forward to getting this one out there for the world to read.
While I love my World in Chains series, I think I love this one even more. As a reminder here’s the cover for Sunweaver.