Under a Pile of Books
By Calvin Park
A podcast for lovers of science fiction and fantasy books. Join host and reviewer Calvin Park for his thoughts on recent reads and releases. You'll also find interviews with authors, reviewers, and others involved in the fantasy community.
Episode 96 - June 24 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks about two recent reads, AWAKENING ARTE by Bernie Anes Paz and A PROPER DRAGON by E.B. Wheeler. Then he moves on to his upcoming reading plans before doing some housekeeping re: upcoming podcast episodes.
June 24, 2022
Episode 95 - June 10 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks two books, Honourbound and Champion, by Todd Herzman. He also gives some explanation about why he enjoys progression fantasy as a subgenre before jumping into his upcoming reads and then talking about some wonderful SFF TV shows that are currently airing or recently aired.
June 10, 2022
Episode 94 - June 3 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin shares his thoughts on THE HOURGLASS THRONE by K.D. Edwards before talking about some upcoming reads, namely HONOURBOUND by Todd Herzman. He finishes out the episode with his initial thoughts on the first five episode of Stranger Things season 4!
June 03, 2022
Episode 93 - May 28 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin reviews Guy Gavriel Kay's ALL THE SEAS OF THE WORLD. Then he goes on to talk about what reading is on deck for him (THE HOURGLASS THRONE by K.D. Edwards) and a book that dropped kinda outta the blue that is part of a series he's enjoyed (MOTHER OF LEARNING). He closes out this episode with some thoughts on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds and Obi-Wan Kenobi (no spoilers!).
May 28, 2022
Episode 92 - May 20 Weekly Pod
WE'RE BACK! In this episode Calvin talks about THE HOUSE IN THE CERULEAN SEA by TJ Klune, A WIZARDS GUIDE TO DEFENSIVE BAKING by T. Kingfisher, and the Stariel series by AJ Lancaster. After that, he mentions some upcoming releases he's excited about before giving a brief update on plans for the near future and sharing about a few SPFBO entrants he's intrigued by and then recommending a new sci-fi show to you.
May 20, 2022
Episode 91 - Interview with Judith Starkston
In this episode, Calvin chats with Judith Starkston about her Tesha series!
January 09, 2021
Episode 90 - John Bierce
John Bierce, author of the Mage Errant series and The Wrack joins the pod to talk about the Mage Errant books, his writing inspirations, and fantasy generally.
November 12, 2020
Episode 89 - Interview with Travis M. Riddle
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Travis M. Riddle to talk about his upcoming release, FLESH EATER.
October 26, 2020
Episode 88 - October 24 Weekly Pod
After a too-long hiatus, Calvin is back with a new episode. In this one, he talks about books by Michael J. Sullivan, Will Wight, Travis M. Riddle, and Tao Wong. After offering his reviews on those, he moves on to talking about two upcoming releases he is excited about.
October 24, 2020
Episode 87 - SPFM Special - SPFBO Winners Roundtable
We end our Self-Published Fantasy Month special with a bang! In this final special episode, Calvin sits down with all five SPFBO winners to talk about self-publishing. Michael McClung, Jonathan French, Rob J. Hayes, J. Zachary Pike, and M.L. Wang all share their thoughts and experiences. A huge thanks to each of the authors for their time (especially to those who got up early or stayed up late).
September 29, 2020
Episode 86 - Discovering Self-Published Fantasy
In this episode Calvin sits down with Caitlin G of Realms of My Mind. The two of them talk about Caitlin's experience last year with Self-Published Fantasy Month, how she got into self-published fantasy, her mountainous TBR, and plenty of other topics!
September 22, 2020
Episode 85 - September 20 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin offers reviews for THE EXERCISE OF VITAL POWERS by Ian Gregorie and BY SEA & SKY by Antoine Bandele. After that, it's on to his upcoming reads and then some upcoming releases. He also previous some of his October reading plans before giving a shoutout to JonBob over at Parsecs & Parchment on the occasion of his one-year blogoversary!
September 20, 2020
Episode 84 - SPFM Special - Writer Mom Roundtable
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Azaaa Davis, Angela Boord, and Carol A. Park. The four have a wonderful discussion around self-publishing, writing, being a "writer-mom," and a whole host of other issues.
September 15, 2020
Episode 83 - SPFM Special - Michael and Robin Sullivan Interview
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Michael J. Sullivan and his wife, Robin. What more can we say? You do NOT want to miss this one!
September 08, 2020
Episode 82 - September 6 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks more about Self-Published Fantasy Month, then its on to HALF A SOUL by Olivia Atwater before yakking about some upcoming releases and his excitement for several October/November releases in particular. Then Calvin fills you in on what you can expect over the next several weeks and teases an upcoming interview that is gonna be lit.
September 06, 2020
Episode 81 - SPFM Special - Hostcast
#SelfPubFantasyMonth is upon us and there are more ways for you to be involved than is, strictly speaking, beneficial to your sanity. You don't want to miss this one! In this episode, Calvin and the other co-hosts for Self Published Fantasy Month sit down to discuss everything coming in September 2020.
September 01, 2020
Episode 80 - August 23 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks about books by Will Wight and then works to get you ready for Self-Published Fantasy Month!
August 23, 2020
Episode 79 - August 2 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin peppers you with recommendations for some wonderful reads to get you prepared for Self-Published Fantasy Month. The extra-wonderful thing about those recs is that each one is currently on sale. You can see the full list here. After that, Calvin moves on to his take on this year's Hugo Awards.
August 02, 2020
Episode 78 - July 19 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about AGE OF LEGEND and AGE OF DEATH by Michael J. Sullivan. Both are excellent books that you need to read. Then he's continues talking about the Legends of the First Empire series with some comments on AGE OF EMPYRE before mentioning Will Wight's Elder Empire series. Then it's on to Calvin's thoughts on Warrior Nun, the new Netflix Original series and finally he talks a bit about Self-Published Fantasy Month.
July 19, 2020
Episode 77 - Patrick Samphire Interview
In this episode, Calvin interviews Patrick Samphire author of Shadow of a Dead God as part of the Storyteller's On Tour blog tour! Check out Calvin's interview with Patrick and then head over to see some of the other wonderful blogs and bloggers who are part of the tour!
July 08, 2020
Episode 76 - June 28 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks about PRIESTESS OF ISHANA by Judith Starkston--what could be better than a Hittite-inspired fantasy? He also mentions a graphic novel retelling of The Odyssey before moving on to his upcoming reads. After that it's a bit of discussion around Netflix's Castlevania series.
June 28, 2020
Episode 75 - June 21 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin reviews THE KINGDOM OF LIARS by Nick Martell. It's a hard one to review, so you'll have to be the judge of whether or not he succeeds. Then it's on to talk about his upcoming reads, and books coming out on his radar (WE RIDE THE STORM!!!). You're in for a treat after this segment, as Calvin moves to talk about Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn, which he'd never seen before but enjoyed watching on Netflix.
June 22, 2020
Episode 74 - June 14 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about A KING'S BARGAIN by J.D.L. Rosell, MARCH: BOOK TWO by John Lewis et al., and THEY CALLED US ENEMY by George Takei. After that, it's on to some conversation about Calvin's upcoming read, including THE KINGDOM OF LIARS by Nick Martell. The podcast is rounded out with some discussion of the PS5 announcement, especially Horizon Forbidden West.
June 14, 2020
Episode 73 - June 7 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about I, EXILE by David M. Samuels, one of his recent reads. Then it's on to his plans for upcoming reads (including A KING'S BARGAIN by J.D.L. Rosell and THE KINGDOM OF LIARS by Nick Martell). After that, Calvin talks about his love for Mercedes Lackey's novels, then it's on to some brief talk about D&D and Self-Published Fantasy Month.
June 07, 2020
Episode 72 - May 31 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks the Orbit version of WE RIDE THE STORM by Devin Madson, THE OBSIDIAN TOWER by Melissa Caruso, and SHADOW OF A DEAD GOD by Patrick Samphire. After that, he shares some of his upcoming reading plans, highlights a book that releases this week, and then talks about the new edition of the Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off!
May 31, 2020
Episode 71 - Luke Tarzian Interview
I have a wonderful time interviewing Luke as part of the blog tour for THE WORLD MAKER PARABLE put on by Storytellers on Tour. Luke and I talk about his writing style, how he crafts characters, and his reasons for self-publishing. You can see all the blogs involved in this tour here.
April 29, 2020
Episode 70 - April 26 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks about THE RANGER OF MARZANNA by Jon Skovron, yaks about his upcoming reading plans, and makes sure you're aware of OF HONEY AND WILDFIRES releasing this week. Then it's on to some talk about virtual cons and other tidbits.
April 26, 2020
Episode 69 - Sarah Chorn Interview
In this episode, Calvin interviews Sarah Chorn (aka BookWormBlues) about her upcoming release, OF HONEY AND WILDFIRES.
April 22, 2020
Episode 68 - April 19 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks THRAWN: ALLIANCES by Timothy Zahn, then he highlights some upcoming releases he's excited about, including SHOREFALL by Robert Jackson Bennett and THE GIRL AND THE STARS by Mark Lawrence. After that it's on to some items in the zeitgeist, including the sad news of SDCC's cancellation and some talk about r/Fantasy Virtual Con.
April 19, 2020
Episode 67 - r/Fantasy Book Bingo Part Two
Join Lisa and Calvin as they dive into the second part of their book bingo conversation!
April 16, 2020
Episode 66 - April 12 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks about THRAWN by Timothy Zahn and THE WORLD MAKER PARABLE by Luke Tarzian. Then it's on to some talk about upcoming reads and releases. After that, there's talk of Dungeons and Dragons, Kingdoms of Amalur, and--of course--Final Fantasy 7 Remake.
April 12, 2020
Episode 65 - r/Fantasy Book Bingo Part 1
Calvin and Lisa talk r/Fantasy's yearly Book Bingo challenge!
April 08, 2020
Episode 64 - April 4 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin reviews TALES OF IOTH by D.P. Woolliscroft. Then it's on to talk about his upcoming reads and releases that should be on your radar. The episode closes out with talk about the movie Onward, r/fantasy Book Bingo, and Final Fantasy 7 Remake.
April 04, 2020
Episode 63 - March 29 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin offers his thoughts on SHOREFALL by Robert Jackson Bennett. Then he moves on to some rambling thoughts on what his next read might be. After that it's on to highlight some upcoming releases before talking about Star Trek: Picard, The Letter for the King, Kingdoms of Amalur, and Dungeons & Dragons.
March 29, 2020
Episode 62 - Virginia McClain Interview
Calvin sits down with Virginia McClain for an interview about her books, what it's like to be a SPFBO finalist, her writing process, and plenty else besides.
March 26, 2020
Episode 61 - March 21 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about THE RAGE OF DRAGONS by Evan Winter and OF HONEY AND WILDFIRES by Sarah Chorn before talking about his upcoming reads, including SHOREFALL by Robert Jackson Bennett. Then it's on to discuss an upcoming release. Finally Calvin talks about the Book Twitter community and coming together to support one another during the coronavirus pandemic.
March 22, 2020
Episode 60 - Samuel Gately Interview
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Samuel Gately to talk about his newest release, THE HEADLOCK OF DESTINY.
March 11, 2020
Episode 59 - March 7 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin offers his thoughts on FLEET OF KNIVES by Gareth L. Powell and BONDS OF BRASS by Emily Skrutskie. Then it's on to his upcoming reads, the first of which has been on his list for ages. After that, there's time to highlight BLIGHT MARKED by Josh Erikson which releases this week. The episode concludes with talk about the upcoming Final Fantasy 7 Remake.
March 08, 2020
Episode 58 - Devin Madson Interview
Calvin sits down with Devin Madson to talk about her book, WE RIDE THE STORM, the craft of writing, her Vengeance Trilogy, and a bunch of other stuff.
March 05, 2020
Episode 57 - February 29 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about THE WOLF OF OREN-YARO by K.S. Villoso. Then it's on to some upcoming reading plans include FLEET OF KNIVES by Gareth L. Powell and BONDS OF BRASS by Emily Skrutskie. After that he mentions upcoming releases on his radar, then it's on to some talk about the Booknest fantasy awards and Star Wars The High Republic.
February 29, 2020
Episode 56 - Josh Erikson Interview Redux
Calvin sits down once again with Josh Erikson, this time to talk about his forthcoming book, BLIGHT MARKED, as well as a bunch of other stuff.
February 27, 2020
Episode 55 - February 22 Weekly Pod
In this week's episode, Calvin talks about THE HEADLOCK OF DESTINY by Samuel Gately and STONE SOUL by eden Hudson. Then it's on to a preview of his upcoming reads, including THE WOLF OF OREN-YARO by K.S. Villoso and FLEET OF KNIVES by Gareth Powell. A bit of rambling ensues before Calvin gets back on track talking about the release of MASTER OF SORROWS. The episode wraps up with some talk about the SPFBO finals!
February 23, 2020
Episode 54 - February 15 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about some of his reads from the past two weeks, including MASTER OF SORROWS by Justin T. Call, MOONTANGLED by Stephanie Burgis, and STARSIGHT by Brandon Sanderson. After that, it's on to his upcoming reading plans which include THE HEADLOCK OF DESTINY by Samuel Gately and STONE SOUL by eden Hudson. In the next segment Calvin talks about some of the upcoming releases on his radar before diving into some fun news from the SFF world that has come out over the past week or two.
February 16, 2020
Episode 53 - Star Wars with Filip
In this episode, Calvin chats with Filip from Booknest.eu, and the two talk about all things Star Wars--or as close to that goal as you can realistically get in 30 minutes!
February 13, 2020
Episode 52 - Stephanie Burgis Interview
In this episode Calvin sits down with Stephanie Burgis and the two talk about her novels, what went into her decision to be a hybrid author, misogyny in fantasy, and fantasy romance. At one point Stephanie references an article by Alix E. Harrow, and that article can be found here: https://writtenworld.substack.com/p/the-written-world-of-love
February 05, 2020
Episode 51 - February 1 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin talks about BINTI by Nnedi Okorafor, BLIGHT MARKED by Josh Erikson, and THE SEVENTH SUN by Lani Forbes--and he enjoyed all of them a lot. After that, he moves on to outlining what he hopes to read in the coming week (MASTER OF SORROWS by Justin T. Call). Then it's on to highlight some notable releases for the upcoming week, MOONTANGLED by Stephanie Burgis and AGE OF DEATH by Michael J. Sullivan. After that Calvin congratulates Devin Madson on her 7-book deal with Orbit and talks briefly about Star Trek Picard. It's a packed pod this week, with plenty for everyone!
February 02, 2020
Episode 50 - Caitlin G Interview
In this interview, Calvin talks with Caitlin from Realms of My Mind. The two squee about ARCs (Advance Reader Copy), how wonderful it is to be part of the book community online, favorite recent reads, some of the video games they're looking forward to, and a bunch of other topics. It's also the 50th episode of the podcast, so you definitely don't want to miss it!
January 29, 2020
Episode 49 - January 25 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks A TALE OF STARS AND SHADOW by Lisa Cassidy. Then it's on to brief discussions of his planned reads, namely BINTI by Nnedi Okorafor and BLIGHT MARKED by Josh Erikson. After this, Calvin talks some video game rumors surrounding Knights of the Old Republic, then it's on to Star Trek: Picard. He rounds out the pod with a teaser discussion about where to begin as a new fantasy reader, and a suggestion to use the SPFBO Sampler if you're new to self-published fantasy.
January 26, 2020
Episode 48 - January 18 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin talks about THORNBOUND by Stephanie Burgis and THE TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY by Alix E. Harrow. After this, he outlines his next planned read A TALE OF STARS & SHADOW by Lisa Cassidy and then talks about A QUEEN IN HIDING by Sarah Kozloff, an upcoming release on his radar. After that it's on to a bit of talk about the soon-to-release Star Trek: Picard and then a couple housekeeping items to round out the pod
January 19, 2020
Episode 47 - Interview with Rob J. Hayes
In this episode, Calvin interviews Rob J. Hayes, winner of the 2017 SPFBO and a finalist in this year's SPFBO. The two talk about Rob's books, fantasy in general, and several other topics.
January 15, 2020
Episode 46 - January 12 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin brings you up to date on his reading from the past couple weeks. You'll hear his thoughts on WARRIOR OF THE ALTAII by Robert Jordan, EMBERS OF WAR by Gareth Powell, SMUGGLER'S FORTUNE by Angela Boord, BLADE'S EDGE by Virginia McClain, and DAUGHTER FROM THE DARK by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko. You'll also hear what's on deck for Calvin this week, beginning with a book he's nearly completed, THORNBOUND by Stephanie Burgis and moving on to THE TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY by Alix Harrow. After that, he points you to some discussion on r/Fantasy beginning with Krista D. Ball's annual post on recommendations. Then it's some quick thoughts on a couple video games before Calvin wraps up.
January 12, 2020
Episode 45 - Interview with Alicia Wanstall-Burke
In this episode Calvin sits down with Alicia Wanstall-Burke, current SPFBO finalist, to talk about her books BLOOD OF HEIRS and LEGACY OF GHOSTS.
January 08, 2020
Episode 44 - SPECIAL EPISODE: Top Novels of 2019
Calvin shares with you his 15 top novels of 2019...and there are more than one where words to describe how great they are fail him.
December 30, 2019
Episode 43 - SPECIAL EPISODE: Top Coverart of 2019
Calvin goes through his top 5 artwork for covers from 2019! Take a listen!
December 24, 2019
Episode 42 - December 21 Weekly Pod
After wishing listeners happy holidays, Calvin jumps into his reads from the past week, including CURSEBREAKER by Carol A. Park and THE LIGHT OF ALL THAT FALLS by James Islington. He doesn't have his normal on deck plans, and instead jumps to a bunch of items of interest including Rise of Skywalker (no spoilers!), The Witcher, r/Fantasy's Stabby Nominations and several others. At the end, Calvin fills listeners in on a couple special episodes they can expect in the next two weeks.
December 22, 2019
Episode 41 - Interview with K.D. Edwards
In this episode, Calvin sits down with K.D. Edwards, author of THE LAST SUN and THE HANGED MAN, to talk about his writing process, what was different between writing THE LAST SUN and writing THE HANGED MAN, sexuality and representation in his books, and a whole host of other topics. Farscape is also mentioned!
December 16, 2019
Episode 40 - December 13 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin celebrates his 100th read before diving into his two reads from the past week. The first (#99) is LIMBO by Thiago D'evecque and the second (#100) is LEGACY OF GHOSTS by Alicia Wanstall-Burke. Then it's on to what's on the docket for the upcoming week: CURSEBREAKER by Carol A. Park and THE LIGHT OF ALL THAT FALLS by James Islington. But there's also another of Calvin's most anticipated novels of the year dropping this week, THE HANGED MAN by K.D. Edwards. From there Calvin recs an episode of The Fantasy Inn Podcast and mentions an upcoming video game he's excited about (Dark Alliance).
December 14, 2019
Episode 39 - Carol A. Park Interview
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Carol A. Park to talk about her Heretic Gods series. The two also touch on what makes fantasy so timeless as a genre, magic systems and gods, hope, and a whole host of other topics.
December 10, 2019
Episode 38 - December 7 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin gives a surprise review of Frozen II before moving onto his week in review. He finished THE SHADOW KING, DRAGONS OF AUTUMN TWILIGHT, and OF SHADOW AND SEA over the last week. On deck is LIMBO by Thiago D'Evecque and LEGACY OF GHOSTS by Alicia Wanstall-Burke. From there it's on to some talk about two upcoming releases that Calvin is incredibly excited for: THE LIGHT OF ALL THAT FALLS by James Islington and CURSEBREAKER by Carol A. Park. Some talk about Stargate and the #WeWantStargate hashtag rounds out the episode before a couple house keeping items.
December 08, 2019
Episode 37 - Darian Smith Interview
In this episode, Calvin interviews Darian Smith, author of KALANON'S RISING, a current SPFBO finalist. The two talk some specifics about Darian's process and books, his plans for his series moving forward, and some of what draws him to the fantasy genre.
December 04, 2019
Episode 36 - December 1 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin updates you on some recent reads (THE GILDED WOLVES, FATAL FRINGE, DRAGONS OF AUTUMN TWILIGHT) before talking about THE SHADOW KING and OF SHADOW AND SEA. Then it's on to talking about the Fantasy Inn's new discord server (you should totally check it out), and some plans for the podcast this December.
December 02, 2019
Episode 35 - Levi Jacobs Interview
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Levi Jacob, author of BEGGAR'S REBELLION, a finalist in the current SPFBO. They talk about how he became a writer, magic systems, violence in fantasy, and a whole host of other topics.
November 27, 2019
Episode 34 - November 23 Weekly Pod
In this episode, Calvin catches you up on his reading from the last week, which included finishing PAUPER'S EMPIRE by Levi Jacobs and continuing DRAGONS OF AUTUMN TWILIGHT and starting THE GILDED WOLVES by Roshani Chokshi. After discussing those he moves into the books he has on deck, namely SHADOW'S HAND by Noelle Nichols and THE SHADOW KING by Alec Hutson (apparently there's a theme to his reading plans this week...). Then Calvin shares those books that are releasing this week and on his radar, before discussing The Dragon Prince season 3 and Hui Gregg's article on self-publishing and traditional publishing over on The Fantasy Inn.
November 24, 2019
Episode 33 - SPECIAL EDITION: On Self-Published Fantasy
In this episode, Calvin has had enough. He waxes eloquent about self-published fantasy, traditionally published fantasy, how he thinks the genre is in a wonderful place right now, and how you shouldn't paint with too broad a brush.
November 20, 2019
Episode 32 - November 16 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin looks at his last two weeks of reading, having missed getting the weekly pod recorded last week. He talks about FATE OF THE FALLEN by Kel Kade, DISPEL ILLUSION by Mark Lawrence, and Darkening Skies by eden Hudson. Then he mentions two books he's currently in the middle of PAUPER'S EMPIRE by Levi Jacobs and Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. Once again he encourages listeners to give SPIT AND SONG by Travis Riddle a read as it releases this week, and then he talks about his first impressions of The Mandalorian.
November 17, 2019
Episode 31 - Travis M. Riddle Interview
Calvin sits down with Travis Riddle author of the upcoming SPIT AND SONG and the two talk about what inspired him to become a writer, how he crafts his stories, the struggles of creative people, and non-human characters in fantasy. By the end, Travis attempts to alienate as many listeners as possible! This is one you don't want to miss.
November 14, 2019
Episode 30 - TS Chan from Novel Notions
In this episode, Calvin sits down with TS Chan from Novel Notions. The two have a wonderful discussion about how TS started reviewing, some of the why behind why she loves the Cradle series so much, the importance of social media for the book community, and diversity in fantasy. There's a lot that gets unpacked in this episode.
November 06, 2019
Episode 29 - November 2 Weekly Pod
Calvin starts this episode with some spoiler warnings for THE BURNING WHITE, then proceeds to give his reacts to that novel. Spoilers end by the 8:00 minute mark. After this, he moves on to some brief comments on his upcoming reads--FATE OF THE FALLEN and DISPEL ILLUSION--before talking about 5 (!) novels releasing this Tuesday that have been on his radar. From there it's diving into discussion about some items of interest from the new Witcher trailer to a blog post by Mark Lawrence about book pricing to the Dragons of Autumn Twilight Read-Along. There is no shortage of things to talk about in this episode, so don't miss it!
November 03, 2019
Episode 28 - Beth (Before We Go Blog) Interview
In this episode Calvin sits down with Beth from Before We Go Blog and the two have a conversation on a whole range of topics, from how Beth got started reviewing to what some of her favorite reads have been. There are plenty of recommendations to fill your TBR in this episode, and the two wrap up with a discussion about characters, and particularly female characters in Tolkien's work.
October 30, 2019
Episode 27 - October 26 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin starts by squeeing about THE HANGED MAN by K.D. Edwards, one of his reads from the last week. He also mentions UNCANNY COLLATERAL, another of his recent completed reads, before talking about his impressions of the first quarter of THE BURNING WHITE by Brent Weeks. Then it's on to his reading plans for the next week. Outside of finishing The Burning White, those plans include FATE OF THE FALLEN by Kel Kade and DISPEL ILLUSION by Mark Lawrence, both ARCs. This episode isn't only about books, however, as Calvin also offers some of his thoughts on The Rise of Skywalker and why he thinks he hasn't been overly enthused with the post-RotJ movies. He reminds you to get ready for Jason Aycock's Dragons of Autumn Twilight Read-Along before some quick housekeeping items.
October 27, 2019
Episode 26 - Dragons of Autumn Twilight Read-Along
In this episode, Jason from Off the TBR joins Calvin again. This time, the two talk about the upcoming Dragons of Autumn Twilight Read-Along that Jason is hosting. The read-along starts November 3, so go grab a copy of the book and join in!
October 23, 2019
Episode 25 - October 19 Weekly Pod
Calvin dives right in with his week in review on this pod, starting with THE HALF KILLED by Quenby Olson. It's a wonderful paranormal fantasy read set in Victorian England. From there he talks about the other book he finished this week (yes! he's back to actually reading and finishing books!), A SHATTERING OF GLASS by Deck Matthews. After trying to convince you once again to give Deck's novels a try, he goes over the two books he's planning to read in the upcoming week, THE HANGED MAN by K.D. Edwards and UNCANNY COLLATERAL by Brian McClellan. Then Calvin talks about one of his most anticipated releases of the year, THE BURNING WHITE by Brent Weeks. He finishes up the podcast by teasing two interview episodes that will be dropping over the next two weeks.
October 20, 2019
Episode 24 - Dave Woolliscroft Interview
In this episode Calvin interviews Dave Woolliscroft, author of the Wildfire Cycle. Dave shares some about what inspired him to be a writer, and the two talk about self-publishing. They also dive into some discussion about how Dave crafts his novels and finish with a fantasy character dinner party. If you like episodes where Sir Terry Pratchett gets mentioned, this is the one for you!
October 16, 2019
Episode 23 October 12 Weekly Pod
Calvin runs through his reads from the past week, talks about some upcoming releases, and yaks about the importance of platonic male friendships.
October 13, 2019
Episode 22 - Magic Systems Roundtable Part Deux
Part two of a special two part episode! Calvin continues his conversation with Beth (Before We Go Blog), Lisa (Way Too Fantasy), and Jason (Off the TBR) talking about magic in fantasy. They continue to come up with some great thoughts and some great recommendations.
October 09, 2019
Episode 21 - October 5 Weekly Pod
In this episode Calvin gives a shout-out to authors he has had the pleasure of interacting with before jumping into his week in review. Not a lot of reading has happened due to time constraints, but he thoroughly enjoyed THE TWO PRINCES, an audio drama produced by Gimlet media. After this you're treated to a glance at Calvin's TBR for October as he yaks about books he has on his TBR and frankly has no hope of getting to this month (he seriously needs to get organized). Next he mentions WARRIOR OF THE ALTAII, the new book by Robert Jordan being published this month. Then it's on to talk about Project Darkwater: Veil of Ruin and some housekeeping items.
October 06, 2019
Episode 20 - Magic Systems Roundtable
A special two part episode! Calvin sits down with Beth (Before We Go Blog), Lisa (Way Too Fantasy), and Jason (Off the TBR) to talk about magic in fantasy. They manage to cover a lot of ground and recommend more books than have ever been recommended in a single episode on the podcast before now. In fact, they were so excited to talk fantasy and magic that we had to split the episode in two. Enjoy Part 1!
October 02, 2019
Episode 19 - September 28 Weekly Pod
This this weekly pod Calvin starts out by praising the single book he managed to finish this week, UNCROWNED by Will Wight. Then he talks a bit about another book he's in the middle of, THE THRONE OF THE FIVE WINDS. He also plans to start a new ARC soon, SPIT AND SONG by Travis Riddle. There's a quick detour here to talk about Calvin's need to reorganize his reading list for the final three months of the year, but then it's on to news from the fantasy world, including Brandon Sanderson talking about Robert Jordan's influence, Spiderman being back in the MCU, and a great podcast episode from The Fantasy Inn Podcast.
September 28, 2019
Episode 18 - Wesley T. Allen Interview
In this episode Calvin interviews author Wesley T. Allen. They talk about writing comedy, the importance of stories, how imagination plays such an important role in culture, and manage to end up with a discussion of Pratchett and Tolkien.
September 25, 2019
Episode 17 - September 21 Weekly Pod
In this week's episode, Calvin talks about his love for THE BONE SHIPS by RJ Barker. He also enjoyed THE FIRE EYE CHOSEN by Samuel Gately last week. His plans for the upcoming week include THE THRONE OF THE FIVE WINDS by S.C. Emmett and UNCROWNED by Will Wight. After sharing his plans for his next reads, Calvin begs you to go buy THE BONE SHIPS and STEEL CROW SAGA by Paul Krueger when they release this week. Then its on to some news from the SFF fold from the last week, notably updates from two upcoming TV series Calvin is interested in. A couple quick housekeeping items round out the episode.
September 22, 2019
Episode 16 - Summer Wrap-up Pod
In this extra long episode, Calvin looks back over the books he read in summer 2019, gives each a quick review, and shares his rating for the book. There are too many books to list here, but if you're looking for possibilities to add to your own to-be-read list, this is the episode for you!
September 18, 2019
Episode 15 - September 14 Weekly Pod
Calvin dives right into what he's been reading. Over the last week he completely BLACK POWDER WAR by Naomi Novik and he's currently in the midst of THE BONE SHIPS by RJ Barker (thank you to Netgalley and Orbit for the ARC). After talking about those he outlines his reading plans for the upcoming week which include THE FIRE EYE CHOSEN by Samuel Gately. A quick detour to talk about self-published fantasy month ends with some time of A HERO BORN--not self-published--but releasing this week. Then it's on to a blog post by Mark Lawrence on paying writers and Calvin's excitement for The Fantasy Inn's new podcast! This episode wraps up with Calvin's recommendation of The Obsidian Trilogy by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory.
September 15, 2019
Episode 14 - Josh Erikson Interview
Calvin sits down with Josh Erikson, author of the Ethereal Earth series, to talk about his books Hero Forged and Fate Lashed, the craft of writing, and influences on fantasy literature. The two of them also geek out about Tolkien and his influence on the fantasy genre.
September 11, 2019
Episode 13 - September 7 Weekly Pod
This week Calvin's recent reads include STARSHIP BLACKBEARD by Michael Wallace and THE GIRL WITH NO FACE by M.H. Boroson. After sharing plenty of praise for Boroson's work, he outlines his plans for the next week including BLACK POWDER WAR by Naomi Novik and THE BONE SHIPS by RJ Barker. He also slips in a reference to a book he's currently beta reading and loving: CURSEBREAKER by Carol A. Park. THE TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY by Alix E. Harrow is also mentioned--one that Calvin hasn't read yet but has heard nothing but rave reviews for. After that it's on to some news in the SFF world, particularly another casting announcement for Amazon's Wheel of Time series and a release date for UNCROWNED by Will Wight.
September 08, 2019
Episode 12 - Jon Auerbach Interview
Jon Auerbach, author of GUILD OF TOKENS, joins Calvin to talk about what inspired him to become an author, how he came up with the concept for his novel, some of the cool real-world history that's weaved into, and some of the challenges of being a self-published author. If you enjoy Asimov references and wonder about fitting real history into fictional works, this is the podcast for you!
September 04, 2019
Episode 11 - August 31 Weekly Pod
This week Calvin dives right into his reads from the past week, giving the thumbs up to THE GUNS ABOVE by Robyn Bennis and STEEL CROW SAGA by Paul Krueger. He then comments on his current read STARSHIP BLACKBEARD by Michael Wallace before outlining the other books he hopes to read in the upcoming week. After that, you'll hear about some of the soon-to-be-released novels on Calvin's radar before he encourages you to take part in the r/fantasy September Goodreads Book of the Month, which happens to be VITA NOSTRA by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko (translated by Julia Meitov Hersey). There's still more excitement, though, as UNCROWNED by Will Wight, will open for preorders on September 5th. Before closing with some housekeeping items, Calvin also shares his first impressions for Carnival Row (Amazon Prime) and Age of Resistance (Netflix).
September 01, 2019
Episode 10 - Petrik from Novel Notions
In this episode, Calvin sits down with Petrik from Novel Notions and a top Goodreads reviewer. They talk about why they love the fantasy genre, geek out a little about THE SWORD OF KAIGEN, discuss what got Petrik into reviewing, and conclude with a brief conversation about the profound things the Fantasy genre does for us as people. You don't want to miss this one!
August 29, 2019
Episode 9 - Jason from Off the TBR
In this episode, Jason Aycock from Off the TBR joins the pod. He and Calvin talk about how Jason got into blogging and reviewing, the great book community on Twitter, and some reads Jason has enjoyed--he even makes a recommendation that Calvin ends up being quick to follow up on. The conclude by talking about Self-Published Fantasy Month, something Jason did last year on his blog and is doing again. Find out more here.
August 27, 2019
Episode 8 - August 24 Weekly Pod
This week there is a ton of news to discuss, but before he dives into that Calvin answers a question he received on Twitter regarding why he generally dislikes present tense narrative. After that, he talks about his reads for the week: A HERO BORN by Jin Yong, AGE OF WAR by Michael J. Sullivan, and KALANON'S RISING by Darian Smith. Then it's brief mentions for his upcoming reads, THE GUNS ABOVE by Robyn Bennis and STELL CROW SAGE by Paul Krueger. After that, it's time to dive into the news of the week in the SFF realm, with Worldcon coming to DC in 2021, and Disney dropping a ton of enticing tidbits about new Marvel and Star Wars series, there is plenty to talk about--including the AGE OF DEATH kickstarter funding in record time.
August 25, 2019
Episode 7 - Angela Boord Interview
In this episode, Angela Boord, the author of FORTUNE'S FOOL, joins Calvin. They discuss the way she writes her characters and crafts her stories, how she came up with the idea for different tenses to indicate different time periods, the way magic feels like a force of a nature in her book, as well as a couple other topics. If you've enjoyed FORTUNE'S FOOL, you'll love this podcast, and if you haven't read FORTUNE'S FOOL yet--then let this discussion convince you!
August 21, 2019
Episode 6 - August 18 Weekly Pod
This week Calvin jumps right in to talk about ARM OF THE SPHINX, which he completed last week. While it's the only book he managed to read last week, he enjoyed it a good deal. He then mentions AGE OF WAR and A HERO BORN, both of which he hopes to read in the upcoming week. That's not the end though, because there has been plenty to talk about over the last week in the world of fantasy. Not only is WorldCon happening in Dublin, but Amazon released more info on the Wheel of Time cast and Calvin can't help but to offer his comments. This pod wraps up with a discussion of Tad Williams' epic Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn trilogy.
August 18, 2019
Episode 5 - M.L. Wang Interview
M.L. Wang, author of THE SWORD OF KAIGEN and the Theonite series, joins the pod to talk with Calvin about some of the inspiration for her world and works, how she crafted her magic system, and the amazing reception KAIGEN has received. This is a great interview and an episode you definitely don't want to miss!
August 14, 2019
Episode 4 - August 10 Weekly Pod
A bit of an abnormal week, Calvin only completed one book and started one other. Nevertheless, he jumps back a week in his reading to talk about THE RESURRECTIONIST OF CALIGO which he never mentioned in last week's pod. Then he geeks out about the amazing magic in BEGGAR'S REBELLION before mentioning his current read: ARM OF THE SPHINX. Upcoming releases on his radar include THE GREATWOOD PORTAL. After that, Calvin spends a couple minutes talking about how fantasy is spilling into the mainstream more and more, particularly with competing Netflix and Amazon shows releasing later this month: AGE OF RESISTANCE (Netflix) and CARNIVAL ROW (Amazon).
August 10, 2019
Episode 3 - Deck Matthews Interview
Deck Matthews, author of THE FIRST OF SHADOWS and DUST OF THE DARKNESS, visits the pod to talk with Calvin about some of his favorite authors and influences on his work, how he writes books that are so intensely fast-paced, and some of the challenges of writing characters with disabilities. You don't want to miss this one!
August 05, 2019
Episode 2 - August 3 Weekly Pod
This week Calvin jumps right in with his thoughts on his reads this week: JADE WAR, DUST OF THE DARKNESS, and BEGGAR'S REBELLION. Later on, he mentions some upcoming releases such as THE GOSSAMER MAGE and encourages listeners to consider joining The Fantasy Inn for their August Readathon themed around travel. There's also plenty of talk about Brandon Sanderson confirming that he is working with J. Michael Straczynski on a pilot for an original contemporary fantasy television series!
August 04, 2019
Episode 1 - Introduction and Weekly Pod #1
After some brief introductory words and hopes for the podcast, Calvin jumps into what he's been reading. Hear his thoughts on AGE OF SWORDS, THE GOSSAMER MAGE, and JADE WAR. Later on, he mentions some upcoming reads he's excited about before geeking out about some news out of SDCC, notably the Star Trek: Picard Trailer and Marvel's Phase 4 announcements.
July 29, 2019