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A blog about books and other things speculative

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Review: Echoes by T.D. Wilson


Echoes
Author:  T.D. Wilson
Series:  The Epherium Chronicles 3
Publisher:  Carina Press, March 30, 2015
Format:  eBook, 180 pages
List Price:  $2.99
eISBN:   9781426899201
Review Copy: Provided by the Author

Review: Echoes by T.D. Wilson
Book three of The Epherium Chronicles

The battle for Cygni colony may be over, but for Captain James Hood and the crew of the EDF Armstrong, the battle for humanity's future has just begun. Hood's defense of the remote outpost against the Cilik'ti aliens was magnificent, but without the timely help of an unlikely ally—a splinter tribe of humanity's bitter enemies—the colony would have been lost and the Armstrong destroyed.

An uneasy peace has prevailed ever since. But as the humans prepare for a crucial meeting, a desperately needed Earth supply convoy is attacked under mysterious circumstances, with the lead escort cruiser's captain disappearing even more mysteriously.

The fate of all of Earth's new colonies hangs in the balance, and Hood is charged with protecting them against growing threats from all sides. When rebellion and unrest challenge the very leadership of the Earth Defense Forces, Hood may need to go it alone…and make the ultimate sacrifice.


Brannigan's Review

Echoes is a book of questions and mysteries. As the crew of the Armstrong make their way to the second of three planets that may be the future home for the human race, they continue to struggle for survival. The Cilik'ti race once ruled by a council has broken into warring factions. The mysterious ship manned by humans continues to cause problems for Captain Hood and his crew for yet unknown reasons, and a third, more cryptic, force rears its head and seems to be willing to fight everyone.

Character-and world-building continue to be strong areas for Wilson as we are introduced to some new characters and a new world. It doesn't take long to become emotionally connected to new characters and their struggles. We also see old characters continue to be fleshed out, which gives them depth. The second planet Tau Ceti is by far my favorite world so far. It held plenty of moments of wonder and it houses some very intriguing lifeforms. My imagination wandered a few times thinking about the possibilities it held for future stories.

T.D. Wilson is creating plenty of tension in this third book of an at least 5 books series as more and more events start to unfold. My only issue with the book is that Wilson doesn't resolve any subplots or questions he raised in the first three books. I like to have answers given along the way and, as yet, there haven't been any. I'm trying to keep up with all the different subplots and questions already raised.

Echoes deepens the mysteries of the overall plot as well as adds additional subplots to a great series. The world-building continues to make Wilson's universe appealing and inviting. I look forward to seeing what the last colony world is like and how everything will take shape in the subsequent books. There are acts of violence and mild language. I would recommend it to teens and adults. It's a wonderful science fiction series that has plenty of action as well as exploration and wonder.





Previously

Embrace
The Epherium Chronicles 1
Carina Press, March 3, 2014
eBook, 200 pages

Review: Echoes by T.D. Wilson
Book one of The Epherium Chronicles 

Hope. Captain James Hood of the Earth Defense Forces remembers what it felt like. Twenty-five years ago, it surged through him as a young boy watching the colony ships launched by mega-corporation Epherium rocket away. He, like so many others, dreamed of following in the colonists' footsteps. He wanted to help settle a new world--to be something greater.

Then came the war... 

Hope. During years of vicious conflict with an insectoid alien race, it was nearly lost. Though Earth has slowly rebuilt in the six years since the war, overcrowding and an unstable sun have made life increasingly inhospitable. When mysterious signals from the nearly forgotten colony ships are received, Hood is ordered to embark on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. Could humanity's future sit among the stars?

Hope. Hood needs it now more than ever. As secrets about the original colonists are revealed and the Epherium Corporation's dark agenda is exposed, new adversaries threaten the mission, proving more dangerous to Earth than their already formidable foes...


See Brannigan's review here.



Crucible
The Epherium Chronicles 2
Carina Press, May 26, 2014
eBook, 217 pages

Review: Echoes by T.D. Wilson
Book two of The Epherium Chronicles

January, 2155

Earth Defense Forces Captain James Hood is on the mission of his life. The Cygni solar system is just one space-fold jump away. One more jump and they'll have reached the fledgling colony that Earth desperately needs if the human race is going to survive. But a plot to derail him has already damaged his ship, threatened the lives of his crew and cost him time. Time the colonists might not have.

So much depends on him now, but Hood's confidence is shaken. It's self-doubt he thought he'd buried, a brutal mind-killer for all military commanders. Yet danger surrounds his team; a brutal insectoid alien race is still out there, intent on eradicating humans, and a greater threat from an unknown, elusive enemy has emerged.

The forces at work on Cygni are like nothing Hood has trained for, tactically or emotionally. When put to the test, he must choose to either trust the unlikeliest of allies, or run and seal the fate of the Cygni colony forever.


See Brannigan's review here.

Interview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015


Please welcome T.D. Wilson to The Qwillery. Echoes, The Epherium Chronicles 3, was published on March 30th by Carina Press.


Interview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015




TQ:  Welcome to The Qwillery. When and why did you start writing?

TDW:  I've written small short stories and even some role-playing adventures over the years, but I never took it seriously. In late 2011, I was helping my parents move some boxes out of their house. I opened one of them and found a short story I had written titled, "Into the Black". It was the basis for this series. I decided right there I was going to develop this into something more. Since that day, I've developed several new story ideas. It helps to keep my mind fresh.



TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser? What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

TDW:  I would have to say I am a plotter. I like to develop key plot points and twists then lay them out in order to see how they fit together. I recently took a plotting course run by my editor. It focused on Goal, Motivation, and Conflict. It was really enlightening and has helped me hone my skills. The most challenging thing for me is finding time to write. I have a full time job and a busy family. I've tried to do the National Novel Writing Month, but I just can't core dump 50K words in a month. Instead, I've used it to plan out stories and start the first pages.



TQ:  How has your background in Electrical Engineering influenced (or not) your writing?

TDW:  I've always been a technology guy and my degree really helps me put technology and its future in perspective for readers. Part of my normal job is helping explain technology to others and I've had to find the right way to convey the complex and uninteresting into something that grasps an individual's attention. I've tried to use that in these books as well.



TQ:  Describe Echoes (The Epherium Chronicles 3) in 140 characters or less.

TDW:  Captain Hood won a key victory and secured a new colony for Earth. In the darkness of space, a larger war threatens humanity. Can Hood recognize the danger in time?



TQ:  Tell us something about Echoes that is not in the book description.

TDWEchoes is a challenge novel. It's that middle part of the series where every major character will be tested and how they react will define them for later on. Probably the one most tested in this book is Maya Greywalker.



TQ:  What inspired you to write The Epherium Chronicles. What appealed to you about writing Military Space Operas?

TDW:  I've always been a fan of space operas, be it Star Trek, Star Wars, Babylon 5, Battlestar Gallactica, etc. I grew up on watching movies and TV shows like these, plus I was a fan of old war movies. My friends did too and we loved to talk about them so much, it became pretty natural to write something like The Epherium Chronicles.



TQ:  What sort of research did you do for Echoes?

TDW:  I did a lot of research on potential planetary landscapes and the effects of low or heavy gravity for Crucible and Echoes. I wanted to give the readers a realistic feel. I spent several hours looking at technologies to use for space travel and combat. I talked with fighter pilots for engagement advice in space and in atmosphere. I studied the effects of railguns and how they could effectively used in space. I think I gathered enough to write a detailed research paper...lol. But it was worth every minute.



TQ:  In Echoes, who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

TDW:  The easiest character for me is Sanchez. He has a terrific spirit in him and when I write in his POV or just about his actions, the words just flow easily. Maya Greywalker is probably the most difficult. She is so closed, but her senses and abilities are often the most difficult to capture. She can see, hear, and feel so much. Also, her reactions to certain situations may not be what most people expect.



TQ:  Which question about Echoes do you wish someone would ask? Ask it and answer it!

TDW

Where did you get your idea for Maya Greywalker?

Well, Maya is combination of some of the toughest comic book heroines with a bit of Sherlock Holmes thrown in. I needed something for her to stand out and that's when I came up with the luminescent blue eyes for the Greywalker children. I get a lot of comments about the eyes. They're unnerving and that can work to her advantage.



TQ:  Give us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery lines from Echoes.

TDW:  This is probably one of my favorites.
“Much of what we know about ourselves and the world around us is handled by one’s perception. How we act or react to a certain situation is derived by stored responses to certain stimuli. Mastering the identification and procession of those stimuli is key to a higher level of awareness. Enhanced perception in a moment of contest can lead to the desired outcome.” Maya stared down at him. “After our session, what does your perception tell you now?”

“That I’m an idiot,” Sanchez grumbled and rubbed his sore shoulder.


TQ:  What's next?

TDW:  I am working on a few short stories for The Epherium Chronicles set during the first Cilik'ti war. They have a different major character, but will have some cameos of current series characters. I am also working on book 4 of the series and a new series that I defined when I took the plotting course from my editor. It sounds like a lot, I know...lol



TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.





Echoes
The Epherium Chronicles 3
Carina Press, March 30, 2015
eBook, 180 pages

Interview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015
Book three of The Epherium Chronicles

The battle for Cygni colony may be over, but for Captain James Hood and the crew of the EDF Armstrong, the battle for humanity's future has just begun. Hood's defense of the remote outpost against the Cilik'ti aliens was magnificent, but without the timely help of an unlikely ally—a splinter tribe of humanity's bitter enemies—the colony would have been lost and the Armstrong destroyed.

An uneasy peace has prevailed ever since. But as the humans prepare for a crucial meeting, a desperately needed Earth supply convoy is attacked under mysterious circumstances, with the lead escort cruiser's captain disappearing even more mysteriously.

The fate of all of Earth's new colonies hangs in the balance, and Hood is charged with protecting them against growing threats from all sides. When rebellion and unrest challenge the very leadership of the Earth Defense Forces, Hood may need to go it alone…and make the ultimate sacrifice.





About T.D. Wilson

Interview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015
T.D. Wilson was born in 1968 in Troy, Ohio and has been an avid fan of science fiction and fantasy from a very young age. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and has supported the systems and networks in several of the largest Supercomputing data centers in the world. His early thirst for adventure in reading began as he explored many of the great stories of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. As his reading scope expanded, Mr. Wilson was fascinated by strange new worlds from the magical of Middle Earth and Narnia to the far reaches of space in Star Trek and Babylon 5. As a science fiction author, he strives to integrate a realistic flavor to his worlds by providing his readers a feel for the real science in science fiction. A topic he loves to discuss with his friends and readers. Mr. Wilson still lives in Ohio with his wife and their two sons.

Website  ~  Twitter @tdwilson3  ~  Facebook  ~  Google+  ~  Goodreads





Previously

Embrace
The Epherium Chronicles 1
Carina Press, March 3, 2014
eBook, 200 pages

Interview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015
Book one of The Epherium Chronicles 

Hope. Captain James Hood of the Earth Defense Forces remembers what it felt like. Twenty-five years ago, it surged through him as a young boy watching the colony ships launched by mega-corporation Epherium rocket away. He, like so many others, dreamed of following in the colonists' footsteps. He wanted to help settle a new world--to be something greater.

Then came the war... 

Hope. During years of vicious conflict with an insectoid alien race, it was nearly lost. Though Earth has slowly rebuilt in the six years since the war, overcrowding and an unstable sun have made life increasingly inhospitable. When mysterious signals from the nearly forgotten colony ships are received, Hood is ordered to embark on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. Could humanity's future sit among the stars?

Hope. Hood needs it now more than ever. As secrets about the original colonists are revealed and the Epherium Corporation's dark agenda is exposed, new adversaries threaten the mission, proving more dangerous to Earth than their already formidable foes...


See Brannigan's review here.




Crucible
The Epherium Chronicles 2
Carina Press, May 26, 2014
eBook, 217 pages

Interview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015
Book two of The Epherium Chronicles

January, 2155

Earth Defense Forces Captain James Hood is on the mission of his life. The Cygni solar system is just one space-fold jump away. One more jump and they'll have reached the fledgling colony that Earth desperately needs if the human race is going to survive. But a plot to derail him has already damaged his ship, threatened the lives of his crew and cost him time. Time the colonists might not have.

So much depends on him now, but Hood's confidence is shaken. It's self-doubt he thought he'd buried, a brutal mind-killer for all military commanders. Yet danger surrounds his team; a brutal insectoid alien race is still out there, intent on eradicating humans, and a greater threat from an unknown, elusive enemy has emerged.

The forces at work on Cygni are like nothing Hood has trained for, tactically or emotionally. When put to the test, he must choose to either trust the unlikeliest of allies, or run and seal the fate of the Cygni colony forever.


See Brannigan's review here.


Review: Embrace by T.D. Wilson


Embrace
Author:  T. D. Wilson
Series:  The Epherium Chronicles 1
Publisher:  Carina Press, March 3, 2014
Format:  eBook, 200 pages
List Price:  $2.99
eISBN:  9781426898037
Review Copy:  Provided by the Author

Review: Embrace by T.D. Wilson
Book one of The Epherium Chronicles 

Hope. Captain James Hood of the Earth Defense Forces remembers what it felt like. Twenty-five years ago, it surged through him as a young boy watching the colony ships launched by mega-corporation Epherium rocket away. He, like so many others, dreamed of following in the colonists' footsteps. He wanted to help settle a new world--to be something greater.

Then came the war... 

Hope. During years of vicious conflict with an insectoid alien race, it was nearly lost. Though Earth has slowly rebuilt in the six years since the war, overcrowding and an unstable sun have made life increasingly inhospitable. When mysterious signals from the nearly forgotten colony ships are received, Hood is ordered to embark on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. Could humanity's future sit among the stars?

Hope. Hood needs it now more than ever. As secrets about the original colonists are revealed and the Epherium Corporation's dark agenda is exposed, new adversaries threaten the mission, proving more dangerous to Earth than their already formidable foes...


Brannigan's Review

Embrace is a science fiction-military-mystery hybrid. I really enjoy the blending of several different genres into one story, if done well. I'm happy to say T.D. Wilson does a great job in doing just that. Wilson spends equal amounts of time world-building and developing characters at the start of the novel, which is a great way to build a strong foundation for any series. It does tend to slow the pacing down, which can be a plus or minus depending of the type of reader you are. By the halfway point, the action begins to accelerate as Captain Hood and his crew are space-folding toward three colony ships whose mission is to settle new planets. Along the way, the crew has to be on the guard for the Cilik'ti and insectoid alien race, a mysterious ship shadowing them, and an unknown murderer on their ship.

Wilson created compelling and fleshed out characters that have strong presence on the page and would be able to carry the novel all by themselves. The world-building was good without getting bogged down in details. The mystery was strong enough to keep me engaged as it played out in the story.

That said, I felt the book suffered in the editing. I found several small editing issues throughout, which was pretty annoying, since it threw me out of the story with each error. Luckily, the story was engaging enough to keep me reading, and I'm glad I did as I truly enjoyed it. I only hope Wilson's second book had a better editor—since I'm reviewing it next. This book is short, so it has more of an episodic feel to it than a true stand-alone book. I have no problem with that since I enjoy seeing conflicts take several books to be resolved, however, on its own there is no real sense of resolution.

Embrace is a great start to a promising series. With its blend of genres, there's plenty to offer to all types of readers. There are acts of violence and mild language, I would recommend it to teens and adults.
Review: Echoes by T.D. WilsonInterview with T.D. Wilson, author of The Epherium Chronicles - March 31, 2015Review: Embrace by T.D. Wilson

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