Live in NYC: Frankenstein – Halloween Special

October 28, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Audio Drama, News 

SFFaudio News

Oh to be in New York City on Halloween…

Radio Theatre NYC - FrankensteinFrankenstein – Halloween Special
Based on the novel by Mary Shelley; Adapted by Dan Bianchi; Performed by a full cast
Length: 1 Hour 20 Minutes [LIVE STAGE PERFORMANCE]
Venue: The Kraine Theater @ 85 E 4th St., NYC
Date: Saturday, October 31, 2009 @ 3pm
Details: General Admission, $18 with code VICTOR, 212-868-4444
Official website:
In 1818, a 19 yr old girl, Mary Shelley, wrote the most influential, the most frightening science fiction novel of all time…about a scientist who dared to go where no man had gone before…in his quest to become God!

Posted by Jesse Willis

New Releases: The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica

October 27, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: New Releases 

New Releases

Simon & Schuster Audio is publicizing the fourth book in a series of novels for “Young Readers” that may interest just about any reader of any age. Here, There Be Dragons is the first book in James A. Owen’s “The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica” series which is a “grand fantasy adventure that tells the story of four travelers — who happen to be C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, and H.G. Wells — as they travel through lands that may be familiar to readers of myths, legends, and fantasy literature.”

The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica

Here’s the book trailer for the third book in the series:

The trailer has me wondering if Jules Verne ever wrote a story with a time machine in it. That’s gotta be the H.G. Wells time machine right? Right?!?

Posted by Jesse Willis

BBCR4: Bullitt

October 27, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Audio Drama, Aural Noir, Online Audio 

Aural Noir: Online Audio

Radio Times - Bullitt (BBC Radio 4 Saturday Play) by Jeremy Aspinall BBC Radio 4Very few people have heard of a novel called Mute Witness by Robert L. Fish (aka Robert L. Pike) – but many, many more have seen the 1968 film into which it was adapted: Bullitt, starring Steve McQueen and a Ford Mustang Fastback.

Personally I think naming a cop “Bullitt” just stupid. It’s like naming a fly fisherman “Rodd” or a janitor “Bukkett.” What you can’t argue with is that Bullitt is a good movie, with a really terrific chase sequence, despite the silly name.

A new radio play adaptation of the novel just aired on BBC Radio 4 and is currently available for listening via the BBC iPlayer. It’s also available over on via torrent. But I got mine in the MP3 format via Radio Downloader. The voice acting appears to be by a British cast, playing New Yorkers. It works for me. See the Radio Times review, at left, for all the details.

BBC Radio 4 - BullittBullitt
Based on a novel by Robert L. Fish; Dramatized by Adrian Bean; Performed by a full cast
Broadcaster: BBC Radio 4 (Saturday Play)
Broadcast: 24th October 24, 2009 @ 14:30-15:30
“A gritty detective story set in the 52nd precinct in New York. Lieutenant Clancy is assigned to protect an important Mafia witness but when the witness is found dead Clancy has only a matter of hours to find the killer before his enemy, the assistant district attorney, finds out.”

Lieutenant Clancy ……………………….. Jason Isaacs
Ada Chalmers/Barnett/Renick/Johnny Rossi ……. Kerry Shale
Detective Kaprowski ……………………….. Lou Hirsch
Captain Wise/Johnny Rossi/Ships Officer ……. John Biggins
Dr Willard/Pete Rossi …………………… Stephen Hogan
Doc Freeman/Sergeant ………………….. Bruce Alexander
Detenctive Mark Kelly ……………………… Sasha Pick
Ann Renick/LAPD Officer …………….. Emerald O’Hanrahan
Hotel Manager/Chalmers’ Secretary ………….. Kate Layden
Directed by Pauline Harris

And though Halloween doesn’t really mean much in the U.K., BBC Radio 4 is doing something somewhat appropriate on this Saturday and the next following…

Haunted House: An Appointment With Fear
By Reece Shearsmith
2 Broadcasts – Approx. 60 Minutes [DISCUSSION]
Broadcaster: BBC Radio 4
Broadcast: October 29 and November 5, 2009 @ 11:30-12:00
Comic actor Reece Shearsmith hosts energetic and witty illustrated discussions on horror, before an audience inside the reputedly haunted Sutton House in Hackney. Reece examines some classic scary moments from British radio and television and explores the ingredients for a classic horror story. He is joined by horror enthusiasts Mark Gatiss, Vic Reeves and Yvette Fielding.

Here’s one thing even the best audio dramatizations can’t do very well…

[Thanks very much Roy!]

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: Otto Of The Silver Hand by Howard Pyle

October 27, 2009 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxWere you intrigued by my Howard Pyle post from the other day but still not quite ready to commit to nearly 7 hours of listening? If the answer was yes then why not try this…

Otto Of The Silver Hand by Howard Pyle, an 1888 novellette published three years prior to Men Of Iron. Unlike the latter this story is set in Germany, sometime in the late Dark Ages, and features a far more villainous father figure. There’s also a different focus, namely the apparent disparity between the cruelty of the era vs. the rise of chivalry. This makes a nice contrast: Just think, the sedate manors of the modern landed gentry are merely the millennial old skeletons of their ancestors, the wicked robber barons and their deadly feuds. Christianity and gentlemanlyness is all well and good, but dark times call for dark manners eh?

Here’s a quick plot hook: Our hero, Otto, after being born is quickly shuffled off to monastery for some early childhood education. When Otto reaches eleven years of age his father returns to claim him from the monastery and take him back to live in their ancestral castle “Drachenhausen” (which my one semester of German tells me literally means “Dragon House”). It is then that Otto learns of his father’s life as a thief and robber and particularly how his father killed a defenseless enemy. Needless to say the sin of the father comes back to hurt poor young Otto. The trauma is great, but survivable – and that alone is a very neat message. There’s also the requisite romance so this short audiobook has something for everybody.

LibriVox - Otto Of The Silver Hand by Howard PyleOtto Of The Silver Hand
By Howard Pyle; Read by various
15 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 3 Hours 3 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: March 30, 2007
The story of little Otto, a gentle, peace-loving child born into the heart of turmoil and strife in the castle of a feuding robber baron in medieval Germany.

Podcast feed:

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

Posted by Jesse Willis

Maria Lectrix: Medal Of Honor by Mack Reynolds

October 27, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

Maureen O’Brien, of the Maria Lectrix podcast, has just wrapped up a short story by one of the truly under-appreciated SF authors. Here’s what Maureen said of him:

“Mack Reynolds was an extremely prolific author who was very popular back in the fifties, sixties and early seventies. (He apparently was a member of the Socialist Labor Party, which surprises me. I always thought he was an early libertarian or something. Well, I’m no pundit.) Anyway, he always struck me as a very Western-ornery sort of writer, and he wrote a lot of military and political sf. It was fairly obvious that he loved throwing what-ifs into the speculation blender. Today he’s almost totally forgotten by younger sf readers, except for his 1968 Star Trek kids’ novel, which was recently reprinted at John Ordover’s behest. (A very nice behest.) I don’t think any of his books were precisely great, but they were all pretty good reads.”

Mack Reynolds also wrote some very readable utopian and dystopian novels that engaged the philosophy of Karl Marx in social Science Fiction thought experiments. No other SF author has engaged communism, socialism and economics like Mack Reynolds did. And that’s not only really strange, it’s really pretty shameful. Economics is a fascinating subject in SF – perhaps the problem is it’s harder to write about?

Here’s Maureen’s latest…

Maria Lectrix - Medal Of Honor by Mack ReynoldsMedal Of Honor
By Mack Reynolds; Read by Maureen O’Brien
4 MP3 Files – Approx. 87 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Podcaster: Maria Lectrix
Podcast: September – October 2009
If you’d received the Galactic Medal of Honor, you could do no wrong, they said. But what if the wrong man received the award, and still found out that was true? Dallas McCord “Mack” Reynolds was a well-known and prolific writer of military SF and stories of political extrapolation during the nineteen-sixties and seventies. From Amazing Science Fiction Stories November 1960.

Part 1 |MP3| Part 2 |MP3| Part 3 |MP3| Part 4 |MP3|

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: Lone Star Planet by H. Beam Piper and John J. McGuire

October 26, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxMy friend Luke Burrage, of the Science Fiction Book Review Podcast, has been talking with me about the Planetary Romance subgenre of Science Fiction. We’re both big fans of it. It’s an old genre, probably best sired by Edgar Rice Burroughs with his novel A Princess Of Mars.

Here is the definition of Planetary Romance from the introduction to The Ultimate Guide Of Science Fiction: The Definitive Illustrated Guide (edited by David Pringle):

PLANETARY ROMANCE: a romantic adventure story set on a colourful alien planet, often involving an element of swordplay (or science fiction equivalent).

I bring this all up because the most recent Planetary Romance to draw my attention is one that’s Texas-sized in scope, but short in length (running under 3.5 hours). And of course the necessary swordplay element has naturally been replaced by gunplay – it is a planet full of Texans after all!

LibriVox - Lone Star Planet by H. Beam Piper and John J. McGuireLone Star Planet
By H. Beam Piper and John J. McGuire; Read by Mark Douglas Nelson
5 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 3 Hours 22 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 25, 2009
New Texas: its citizens figure that name about says it all. The Solar League ambassador to the Lone Star Planet has the unenviable task of convincing New Texans that a s’Srauff attack is imminent, and dangerous. Unfortunately it’s common knowledge that the s’Srauff are evolved from canine ancestors—and not a Texan alive is about to be scared of a talking dog! But unless he can get them to act, and fast, there won’t be a Texan alive, scared or otherwise!

Podcast feed:

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

And, if you’re looking for more terrifically narrated Planetary Romance audiobooks you couldn’t do better than to start with another one read by Mark Douglas Nelson … The Green Odyssey by Philip Jose Farmer.

[Thanks also to libraryanne and James Christopher]

Posted by Jesse Willis

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