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Cassastar Paperback – October 19, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 246 pages
  • Publisher: Dancing Lemur Press (October 19, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0981621066
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981621067
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,522,646 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Debut novelist Cavanaugh's maiden space flight tells a familiar story. Byron lost his parents at an early age. Abandoned by his older sister to a group home, he rebels against authority and refuses to let anyone get close to him. Like many young men with troubled histories, he joins the military to have a better life and enters training to become one of the elite Cosbolt fighters. This goal requires Byron to drop his defenses and telepathically bond with a navigator so he can use his ship's teleportation device to jump from point to point in space. In the process, he discovers some unusual abilities. This formulaic space opera aspires to be a bildungsroman for its petulant hero, but it confuses the archetypal with the clichéd.
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Review

"...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

More About the Author

ALEX J. CAVANAUGH works in web design and graphics. He's experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is Ninja Captain Alex and founder of the Insecure Writer's Support Group and website. www.alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com

CASSASTORM, Amazon Sci-fi Best Seller & Pinnacle Book Award Winner:
"With a talent for worldbuilding and a compelling cast of characters, Alex J. Cavanaugh combines high powered space battles and the challenges of family dynamics to provide readers a space opera with heart."
- Elizabeth S. Craig, author of the Southern Quilting and Myrtle Clover mysteries

CASSAFIRE, Amazon Sci-fi Best Seller & Pinnacle Book Award Winner:
"This sequel to Cavanaugh's first novel, CassaStar, delivers on the promise of its predecessor, combining military action sequences and political intrigue with strong, memorable characters. Reminiscent of the action-driven stories of Robert A. Heinlein's early fiction..." - Library Journal

CASSASTAR, Amazon Sci-fi Best Seller:
"...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

Customer Reviews

The story line and characters are very good.
William Roberts
This is a wonderful debut that I truly recommend for all Science Fiction lovers.
Lucy (Moonlight Gleam)
I started out reading this book thinking; OK, I 'll keep an open mind.
Peepers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Stan Slaughter on October 9, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I had to give this novel only a 3 star review. While the concepts interested me, the writing skills suffer from what I call the "Flaming Sword of Fire" problem.

You don't have to say Fire - the sword is flaming.

There are many examples in the book where this kind of writing is in evidence. It's a mistake that goes away as the author gains more experience and skill. My suggestion is that people download a sample of the book first. If you do not have a problem with it then go ahead and purchase it
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Donna Hole on April 21, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In today's action oriented, fast paced world of sci-fi novel reading, CassaStar, the debut novel by author Alex J. Cavanaugh, is refreshingly unique. It starts off with the high action demanded by modern readers, but the extreme action is also meant to introduce the setting and culture. After the initial adrenalin rush, it slows down for back-story on the two main characters Bassa and Byron; but if you're a reader who doesn't judge a book by its opening, then you'll arrive at a novel with all the character, world building, and action that will keep you turning pages long after you would normally take a break.

I'm not an avid sci-fi reader/viewer, but I've watched enough Star Trek/Star Wars/Battle Star Galactica/Star Ship Troopers/SG-1, etc . . to be acclimated to certain terms and expected technology in a futuristic, space friendly world. The world pretty much builds itself in the narrative description, action and dialogue.

Nothing shows this unique world off better than the introduction of Bassa, and his walk through one day in his world aboard the Cosbolt Training center Guaard. With the author's permission, I'll post one of the first passages that hooked me into this novel:

"Bassa exited his quarters and strolled down the short hallway. He paused at the lift, his gaze falling on the telepod's open doorway. New Pilots and navigators were not permitted to use the teleported pods until properly trained, but Bassa's rank granted him full access to the devices. The invitation stretch his powers rather than his legs was too tempting, and he opted for the faster form of transportation.

Stepping inside the pod, Bassa waited for the gentle pop of the sealed door before visualizing his destination.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Shuh on October 30, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I just want to add my voice to giving applause to a story very well done. Previous reviews have noticed all the positives I noticed while reading the book. I won't repeat them here.

The negatives, well lets not talk about that. Well just a little bit. I think they speak more to the ego of the reviewer rather than to to decisions of the author. I had no problems with the language or use of words. None constructive criticism makes the story about something else, and not the story.

Once the story captured me, it was read in basically a single sitting. I had no problems with the language or use of words. I am not a speed reader, I read every word, to embrace the full intentions of the author. Let the author take you where they want to go, it's their story. You are just along for the ride. I enjoyed the ride. The relationships are very well handled. This I consider what makes this work worth reading. Thank you Alex, well done.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Bryan Stearns on September 13, 2010
Format: Paperback
Here is my review of Alex J Cavanaugh's debut novel "CassaStar." Now, the first thing that I'm going to say is that I was very, very critical of this book. I have known Alex ever since I started blogging, so reading his book I was naturally very knit picky. The good news? Well, that has mainly to do with the fact that it's an early review copy, and thus they are things that will be fixed in the final version, such as grammatical errors, and some syntax issues. Other than that, well...

I loved it.

CassaStar was most definitely a refreshing read. It is a Sci Fi book, more accurately a Space Opera. It takes place in an unnamed galaxy, presumably far away from Earth, where the main characters are from a race of people called Cassans. They have a strong mental ability that allows them to project their thoughts, which makes piloting fighters a heck of a lot easier. While I generally prefer my Sci Fi books closer to Earth, or dealing with people from Earth in the far future, I grew to like the fact this book had nothing to do with Earth. It allowed Cavanaugh to create a completely different universe, one where the political events of Earth played no part.

When I first read the synopsis of the book, the main character of Byron seemed like the typical "too cool for school," character, who was there to raise hell, and just be an all around ass. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised when I found out that was not the case at all. Byron was a bit of a hell raiser, but his main focus, throughout the course of the book, was to be the best. I enjoyed this different approach immensely. Having a character who was a typical, arrogant kid but had the drive to always be the best, and even try to stay out of trouble, really resonated with me.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Helen Ginger on January 30, 2012
Format: Paperback
I don't read much science fiction. I read memoir, romance, commercial women's fiction, mystery, thrillers, suspense, the list could go on, but, well, not much sci/fi. Not my thing, whatever a "thing" is. But I really liked CassaStar.

Cavanaugh creates a fully developed world with believable characters. You take our world and plop it down in the midst of a war where fighter pilots and their navigators go up against the baddest Star Trek soldiers and you got CassaStar. But it's not all fighting. Bryon, the main character, is dealing with the loss of his former navigator and not particularly happy about having to work with someone new at a new station. But war is war and he's one of the best pilots and one of only a very few Cosbolt pilots who can teleport.

Of course, CassaStar is not all war and fighting. There are down times where we get to see the world outside of the war. And there, too, Cavanaugh creates believable, although other-worldly, scenes.

I give CassaStar by Alex J. Cavanaugh a rating of Hel-of-a-Story
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