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Spinward Fringe Broadcast 0: Origins (First Light Chronicles #1-3)

4.02  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,502 Ratings  ·  302 Reviews
It is the distant future and one man, Jonas Valent, is letting his life slip by. He is employed by Freeground station as a port traffic controller, a job he took after completing a tour in the military. His only real joy in life is his participation in true-to-life military simulations with a cadre of friends who come together regularly to defeat challenges made to test th ...more
Kindle Edition, 376 pages
Published December 1st 2010 (first published August 23rd 2008)
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Old Man's War by John ScalziStarship Troopers by Robert A. HeinleinPandora's Star by Peter F. HamiltonDune by Frank HerbertLeviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey
Excellent Space Opera
82nd out of 386 books — 2,065 voters
Ender's Game by Orson Scott CardStarship Troopers by Robert A. HeinleinOld Man's War by John ScalziOn Basilisk Station by David WeberThe Forever War by Joe Haldeman
Best Military Science Fiction Books
74th out of 581 books — 644 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Mar 02, 2012 Richard rated it did not like it
Most good authors perform meticulous research when undertaking a new work of fiction. Authors such as Tom Clancy and Connie Willis spend many hours in libraries and museums gathering information about the subjects of their books. They also conduct interviews with knowledgeable people. That research allows the reader to imagine that the work of fiction might, at a minimum, be possible in the real world. It is obvious that the author of this book performed very little more research than, perhaps, ...more
Jul 08, 2011 John rated it it was ok
Shelves: science-fiction
I really tried to like this book, but…
I found it on Amazon as a free ebook for my Kindle. It is the first story of a series. As someone else said, I would give it 2 stars if we could give half stars in Goodreads.
The premise of story is that a group of amateurs hack a simulator that is used by the local military academy for training. The group then proceeds to defeat and humiliate the academies best. After being exposed, the group is then not sent to prison, but given a starship and sent out on
Randolph Lalonde
Feb 06, 2010 Randolph Lalonde added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I wrote this trilogy and invite everyone to read it for free at Barnes and Noble: or at Smashwords:

Aug 01, 2011 Kyle rated it liked it
Spinward Fringe Broadcast 0: Origins is Randolph Lalonde's initial collection of three novellas in what is now a long running series. This book and series fall into the ever changing "space opera" genre depicting large scale themes set in deep outer space. There are a few minor romance plots as well, but they are brief w/out any graphic scenes.

The novellas remind me of Star Trek and Firefly in that they also center around a strong captain with an interesting cast of supporting crew. Origins fol
Jun 19, 2011 Lee rated it liked it
I want to start by saying I got this for free from Kindle.

If I could give half stars, this would really be a 2.5 star rating. It is just slightly below a 3 star, but not a 2 star.
Well there are parts of the book that have a good solid story line, that kept me engrossed and looking forward to getting ont he train so I could rad some more. On the other hand there were parts that were just very ordinarily written that became un-realistic.
The romance between characters at times maybe wonder if
J.A. Clement
Apr 23, 2011 J.A. Clement rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves a good yarn and can stand a bit of sci-fi jargon.
Shelves: sci-fi, indie-authors
I like sci-fi and had seen a lot of positive comments on Randolph Lalonde's work on several forums, so coming across this in the course of an idle browse, decided to have a look.

I loved it - for a start it's a long, character-driven story where we see the main character develop from an idle, unfulfilled worker in a fairly undemanding job into a new challenge where he has to suddenly take responsibility for a crew and negotiate them through a series of dangerous events.The ending is sudden and dr
Red Haircrow
Mar 18, 2011 Red Haircrow rated it really liked it
I confess, I’d become more selective over the past few years, having been disappointed in science fiction of the space opera variety. Converse, perhaps, I’d read trilogies like Karin Lowachee’s set of three: Warchild, Burndive and Cagebird, that I’d really loved. They had characters with backgrounds and complexities that worked for me. I’ve been a long time fan of all kinds of sci-fi, however.

Spinward Fringe Origins is the type of sci-fi that isn’t just for picking up when you have a few moments
Jan 04, 2014 Eric rated it liked it
The one thing that comes to mind when I read this omnibus is that the story is quite similar to the Lost Fleet series by John G. Hemry, only more exciting right from the start. I read a few reviews in which people were complaining that the military ranks used are not correct, or the terms used are not consistent, and they might be right, but if something minor like that is going to annoy you so much then you should not read indie fiction. I personally liked most of the Lost Fleet books, but this ...more
The Pirate Ghost (Formerly known as the Curmudgeon)
Let’s start, I give the overall series 4.5 stars, this book 3.5-4 stars.

Randolph LaLonde is an Independent Author and this series is his most successful books yet. According to the bio on his website, he’s selling enough of these books to stop working and become a full time writer. A rare success story, though surely not the only one. This book is proof that there are gems to be found in Independently Published books if you are willing to look for them. And, he’s Canadian (…not that there’s anyt
Aug 23, 2015 Craig rated it did not like it
I really really don't understand why this gets such a high rating. This is quite possible one of the worst books I have ever read. The one dimensional characters blunder through three extra long "Star Trek" episodes, spouting line after line of pointless shallow dialogue.

I could go on, but I think once I start I will not be able to stop.


Because people don't understand it I will add this to all my reviews
* = Did not like it <- the only negative option
** = It was ok
*** = Liked it
**** = Real
Riki Solanen
Jan 19, 2014 Riki Solanen rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book, and will soon be reading the next in the series. A space opera, it has elements that remind me of both Star Trek and Firefly, and indeed, even has a few references for fan laughs. Like Star Trek though, a suspension of disbelief is needed when it comes to how they get out of all their many scrapes.

This story has a number of twists and turns... I enjoy not being able to predict the way it's going to go. The universe building is interesting as well... planets and sectio
Easily 5/5 stars. This was a truly amazing book from an Indie Science Fiction writer. I look forward to the remaining books in the series eventually. Lalonde incorporates many scifi staples and classics into his tale but manages to insert enough fresh ideas to make the entire universe his own. I think that whether you're new to Science Fiction or an old hand, this is a good read that you won't be disapointed in, not to mention that it's 1,385 pages long and FREE on the Barnes and Noble NOOK.
Mar 31, 2011 liirogue rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this! I don't usually like hard-core space travel scifi, but this was good. I skipped over all of the technical mumbo jumbo that this genre always has, and was pleasantly surprised by the characters and story line. I will definitely be reading the sequels!
May 15, 2016 Andrew rated it really liked it
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
This was a free download for my Kindle and turned out to be an enjoyable action packed adventure tale. I will certainly be reading the other titles in the series.
Al "Tank"
Apr 01, 2015 Al "Tank" rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Military Science Fiction fans
A thoroughly enjoyable story. Rather long, but that's a plus in this case. A bunch of military and ex-military types, living on a super-sized space station in the middle of nowhere, meet in a war-game simulation. Trouble is, they don't belong there.

Now, here is one of the two points that kept me from giving it 5 stars:

Point 1: The one of the participants tips off the military and they military is impressed by their performance. Seems this is a simulation used for training and the team has been
Truly enjoyable. One of my favorite series.
May 10, 2012 Peggy rated it really liked it
This Sci-fi, space opera is very reminiscent of Star Trek and others of that oeuvre. It is what it is, and as it is, it is a fun read that is purely entertaining. Lalonde deliberately writes within the confines of the genre and doesn't pretend to be anything else.

Spinward Fringe Broadcast 0: Origins is actually a collection of three short novellas that do a fairly good job of reading as one novel. The reader will not feel shortchanged as the good guys as suitably heroic, if a bit inept at times
Jan 29, 2012 Gareth rated it really liked it
** This review does not include a plot synopsis - read the back of the book (or any one of a million other 'reviews' if that's what you're after **

Whilst reading this book I was thinking of ways to describe it, and I frequently found myself comparing it to watching an episode of Star Trek (take your pick of which version). Turns out that this wasn't a coincidence - the book was engineered to read like that. Lalonde, it seems, wanted to try his hand at a different genre, and immersed himself in e
Nov 09, 2011 Martin rated it really liked it
I found this book after reading "The Phoenix Conspiracy" and desperately wanting to find another book to try and satisfy my new found hunger for space operas.
It was free from Amazon for Kindle and so I felt I couldn't go wrong. If I didn't like it then I could simply delete it and move on with nothing gained, nothing lost.

I started the book a bit disappointed to be honest. The battle you are thrown into doesn't seem to flow very well, but I put this down to the fact that you know none of the c
Nov 06, 2011 Simon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle-read
I am no experienced book reviewer and below probably shows that.

Origins - Review
The main character Jonas Valent is employed as a port traffic controller in a space station called Freeground, his only vice is his after work participation in simulations with his online friends. Soon their identities become known to the Freeground Fleet Command and their lives are changed forever.

The book consists of three parts, Freeground, Limbo and the last 50% of the book Starfree Port. The storytelling is d
Grant Gardiner
Jan 25, 2013 Grant Gardiner rated it really liked it
Shelves: free, blogged
*E-Pulp Warning* All my e-reading is e-pulp so I review to that standard. Reader beware :) *E-Pulp Warning*

Overall: 4 stars (Recommend)

I stumbled across a recommendation for this series and I'm really glad I did. Spinward Fringe is a fantastic example of space opera fiction with an incredibly detailed world, fantastic technology and a great concept that allows us to explore them both. While it can suffer the usual pacing problems inherent in the genre it is a quality start to an e-pulp series th
May 12, 2011 Kittykat rated it liked it
Shelves: sf-fantasy, fiction
This is an OK book. (Well, technically it's an omnibus edition of three books, but whatever.) The price is right (Origins is a whole zero dollars in the Kindle Store) and it manages to be a nice bit of fun escapism despite the fact that it's pure, 100%, explosion-filled Gary Stu fantasy.

You can actually ignore the Gary-Stu-ness of the book for the most part, though the places where it dumps realism in favor of the fantasy can occasionally be jarring if it's been a while since we've been reminde
Douglas Cook
May 29, 2012 Douglas Cook rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
First Paragraphs

Book 1 - Freeground
"The odds weren’t in our favour. They rarely were, but this time it was different. The stakes were higher. As I drifted through the silence of space in my Raze Starfighter, I got a shiver. All systems were deactivated, including life support. Our wing was hiding behind thousands of meteors we had stirred up and directed at a nearby gas giant.

Lalonde, Randolph (2010-12-01). Origins (Spinward Fringe) (Kindle Locations 26-28). . Kindle Edition.

Book 2 - Limbo
Angus Mcfarlane
Jun 19, 2013 Angus Mcfarlane rated it liked it
A freebie scifi ebook setting the scene for a series of books by a new author, to this genre at least. Certainly enough there to motivate reading the follow up books even though they have a modest price attached. The opening has an Ender-esque flavour, with a renegade crew drawn together in a simulator situation before being sent off on a clandestine mission to defend their home. Heroism, conspiracy, romance and adventure are all featured and the plot moves along briskly and ends with a satisfyi ...more
Linda Geletei
Dec 14, 2015 Linda Geletei rated it it was amazing
Could not put it down

One of the best I have read have. Read SciFi since high school and this book piqued my interest, hated to come to the end.
May 15, 2011 Jolie rated it really liked it
Here I am again, writing a book review for another science fiction And again, I was pleasantly surprised about how much I liked the book.

I got really wrapped up in the journeys of Jonas Valent, Arya Rice, Oz, Ming Buu, Alice (the AI) and the other characters in the book. I was a little disappointed at how it ended but then I realized that, hey, I have the rest of the books in the series. Yay!!

The only thing that turned me off was all of the technical talk about the ship(s).
Jan 10, 2013 Br1cht rated it did not like it
I wont rephrase what the other 1-2 star rewievs has to say. I will just state that the author sometimes has a nice "easy reading-style) type of flow in his writing, there are SO.MANY. Inconsistencies in the plot and behavior of the protagonists and their enemies(Think 60s Star Trek)

Its like an childrens book for 8-12 in that regard, so if you want an modicrum of realism in your Sci-Fi this isnt for you! If you are able to turn of your thought processes and arent to picky about stuff, then this i
Victoria Simcox
Dec 07, 2015 Victoria Simcox rated it really liked it
In the far off future, Jonas is allowing his existence to slide away. There are limited situations in the military for him as well as for his friends. An addictive apprehension tempts them so that they disregard the possible consequences. They are up against abundant trials; undertaking tasks in the inhabited areas of the galaxy to obtain knowledge and data as well as setting the footings for the Freeground Nation. Safeguarding the munitions they have to protect themselves from intruding foes. J ...more
Dominic Lebel
Dec 26, 2014 Dominic Lebel rated it it was amazing
This series was an absolute surprise to me. I had not heard from this author before and randomly came across in iTunes bookstore. I figured I couldn't go wrong for the 4 dollars price tag, and ended up reading the entire saga. I am now on broadcast 4, and I am hooked! If you like the space odesseys type of stories, then this one is for you. The author's style reads in a similar way as the classic "Starship troopers" in a sense., but with a better character development and some very original idea ...more
Michele Amitrani
Aug 26, 2014 Michele Amitrani rated it really liked it
If you are looking for a good, ol’ Sci-Fi novel, I mean the whole deal: space battles, self-conscious AIs, aliens, cloaking devices, spaceships several kilometres long and wormhole this is the book for you.

Randolph Lalonde is another successful story in the self-published realm. His books have hundreds of reviews on Amazon and he sold thousands of his works, now successfully making a living out of them.

Origins (Spinward Fringe) is the story of Captain Valent and the crew of the shadow ship First
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The Book Review E...: The Spinward Fringe Series 2 8 Apr 19, 2013 05:54PM  
  • The Honour of the Knights (The Battle for the Solar System)
  • Empire (In Her Name: Redemption, #1)
  • Turing Evolved
  • The Phoenix Conspiracy (The Phoenix Conspiracy, #1)
  • Right Ascension
  • Shatter (The Children of Man, #1)
  • Haven (The Fall of Haven #1)
  • Neptune Crossing (Chaos Chronicles, #1)
  • Into the Abyss (Rogue Hunter: Gaia #1)
  • The Sword Lord
  • The Last Praetorian (The Redemption Trilogy, #1)
  • Lacuna: Demons of the Void (Lacuna #1)
  • Soul Identity (Soul Identity, #1)
  • Bright of the Sky (Entire and the Rose, #1)
  • Peace Warrior
  • The Softwire: Virus on Orbis 1
  • The Sea of Storms (Lodestone, #1)
  • Astra: Synchronicity
Born in 1974, Randolph Lalonde has worked in customer service, sales, played drums for several heavy metal bands you've never heard of, dealt blackjack in a traveling casino, and serviced countless computers. He's also owned businesses in the design, printing, collectible and custom computer fields.

He completed writing his first novel in the fantasy adventure genre at the age of fifteen and has be
More about Randolph Lalonde...

Other Books in the Series

First Light Chronicles (3 books)
  • Freeground (First Light Chronicles, #1, Spinward Fringe #0.1)
  • Limbo (First Light Chronicles, #2, Spinward Fringe #0.2)
  • First Light Chronicles Starfree Port (First Light Chronicles, #3, Spinward Fringe #0.3)

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“If what you see frightens you, then stop looking,” he replied. “Old Chinese proverb?” “No, crazy pilot’s advice.” 0 likes
“As we are all stardust, it is our destiny to seek out our brighter cousins and fathers.” 0 likes
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