This past week we gave the spotlight to The Ventifact Colossus, the first book in Dorian Hart’s Epic Fantasy series, The Heroes of Spira in celebration of the upcoming fourth book, The Infinite Tower! Our Roadies brought a wide selection of content to this show with reviews, interviews and other posts. Now it’s time to bring the show to an end and it’s my pleasure to present you with the encore, including some extra content. Come and learn a bit more about the world of The Ventifact Colossus through Dorian’s fan cast!
Dorian Hart is the author of the Heroes of Spira epic fantasy series, which currently includes The Ventifact Colossus, The Crosser’s Maze, and The Greatwood Portal. The fourth book, The Infinite Tower, should be out in February or March of 2021.
In a bygone century, Dorian graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree in creative writing. This led circuitously to a 20-year career as a video game designer, where he contributed to many award-winning titles including Thief, System Shock, System Shock 2, and BioShock.
Now he writes books in his Boston-area study, serves as the stay-at-home dad for his two teenage daughters, and happily allows his wife to drag him off on various wilderness adventures. He also spends time torturing his piano, playing the sport of pickleball, losing at board games, making terrible dad jokes, and trembling beneath the shadow of his towering TBR.
Banished to an otherworldly prison for centuries, the monstrous Emperor Naradawk is about to break free and wreak havoc upon the world of Spira. The archmage Abernathy can no longer keep the monster at bay, and has summoned a collection of would-be heroes to help set things right.
Surely he made a mistake. These *can’t* be the right people.
Dranko is priest-turned-pickpocket, expelled from his church for his antics. Kibilhathur is a painfully shy craftsman who speaks to stones. Aravia is a wizard’s apprentice whose intellect is eclipsed only by her arrogance. Ernest is a terrified baker’s son. Morningstar is a priestess forbidden from daylight. Tor is a young nobleman with attention issues. Ysabel is an elderly farm woman. Grey Wolf is a hard-bitten mercenary.
None of them are qualified to save the world, but they’ll have to do. Even Abernathy himself seems uncertain as to why he chose them.
What starts with a simple scouting mission soon spirals into something more far-reaching and sinister. The heroes will contest with dream warriors, evil cultists, sentient gemstones, and a devious yet infuriatingly polite gentleman with a perfect mustache, on their way to a desperate encounter with the unstoppable: The Ventifact Colossus.
The Ventifact Colossus is Book One of the Heroes of Spira.
Click on the blog name to read their full review or other content!
FEBRUARY 21ST–THE WELCOMING
Whispers & Wonder – guest post: RPGs and Novels + IG spotlight
“For many years I resisted turning my long D&D campaign into novels, due in part to the tedium of stripping out proprietary content, but also because I wasn’t sure it was a transition that could work. When I eventually decided to take the plunge, it was with the understanding that I would not be transcribing game sessions into books, but rather using my decade-and-a-half of characters and plots as source material for a fantasy series.
It has been my observation that “this book feels like a D&D game” is usually meant as a pejorative. Writing instructors will often tell writers never to base novels on gaming campaigns. I want to explore a bit about why that is. What is it, specifically, that makes an RPG-feeling book rub people the wrong way? Are those fair criticisms? Where the pitfalls are real, how can they be avoided?”
Fantasy Book Critic – interview
Witty and Sarcastic Bookclub – review
“Perhaps my favorite thing about The Ventifact Colossus is its underlying theme of hope and the goodness of people. Don’t get me wrong: the stakes are high, and the author definitely loves making the reader emotional (I’m still salty about a particular scene), but the pages didn’t scream, “Doooommmm!” at me every time I opened the book.
This is the sort of book that reminds me why fantasy is my favorite genre. Come for the adventure, stay for the amazing characters. I highly recommend this book, and the series continues to be fantastic.”
Sadie’s Spotlight – spotlight + IG spotlight
Rusty’s Reads – review (Note: Rusty linked all three of his and his son’s reviews!)
“This is an optimistic book with a healthy sprinkling of fun moments (often thanks to Dranko). But it also has a charming quality to it, again thanks to the characters. As we discover the backstories of the main characters, mostly who have risen from difficult pasts, it becomes increasingly easier to cheer on these gang of misfits that strangely work quite well with each other.”
Al-Alhambra – review
“There’s so much mystery in this book, so much fascinating lore, and so much awesome stuff, I’m surprised this series is so under-rated. I’d compare this to Kings of the Wyld. It takes itself seriously at times, and at times it doesn’t. It’s perfect for reading to children. It is an adventure, and most of all, I had a great time reading this book. I thoroughly recommend this!”
Beneath A Thousand Skies – review
“Hart has an easy, entertaining writing style, and there was plenty of humour and action, in amongst the more serious moments, and it was a page-turner because of that and because of the characters that pull you into their story.”
@theenchantedshelf – IG spotlight
It’s a time-honored tradition for fantasy writers to imagine what actors and actresses would play the parts of their characters, were their books ever put up on the screen.
For The Heroes of Spira, I solicited in the input of readers and arrived at this fan-cast for Horn’s Company:
Part-goblin, irreverent attitude, mouth that gets him in trouble.
Ideal actor: Ron Perlman. Yes, he’s 40 years too old, but he’s such a perfect fit, I’d be willing to make him older for the movies.
Morningstar of Ell
Practical, pale face, white hair.
Ideal actress: Belinda McClory, best known for playing “Switch” in The Matrix:
world-weary, rugged, handsome
Ideal actor: Hugh Jackman
Young, unsure, athletic, innocent
Ideal actor: Tom Holland
Young, brilliant, aloof
Ideal actress: Anya Taylor-Joy. (And, really, the character of Beth Harmon in Queen’s Gambit has a lot in common with Aravia.)
Young, strong, handsome, cheerful
Ideal actor: Regé-Jean Page
Elderly, wise, kindly
Ideal actress: Lesley Nicol
Shy, barrel-chested, strong, friendly
Ideal actor: Mark Addy
If you are interested in The Ventifact Colossus and would like to get in contact with Dorian Hart, you can find him on social media:
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Grab a copy of The Ventifact Colosssus on Amazon which is on sale for 0.99$!
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