The SFFaudio Podcast #371 – READALONG: Clans Of The Alphane Moon by Philip K. Dick

May 30, 2016 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #371 – Jesse, Paul, and Marissa talk about Clans Of The Alphane Moon by Philip K. Dick.

Talked about on today’s show:
1964, entertaining, gotta write this book, gotta take some drugs, more about his life than any other PKD books we’ve, when the slime mold gives him amphetamines, a mental breakdown, what the plot of the novel is, a bad scene out of It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, World, such a Philip K. Dick moment, A Scanner Darkly, Alphane vs. Earth, off the shelf stuff, breasts every ten pages, a breast heavy book, nipple dilation, a scathing look, her nipples reduced, a breasty book, the Irish actress, the ending, an insane moon full of norms, it’s going to work out, she almost bites his ear off, the love potion, a joke, release some of the air out of your tires, of course crazy people aren’t stupid, the clans are not the pushovers Earth thinks they are, worst CIA ever, going from crisis to crisis, the original short story, Shell Game, pare = paranoid, parallels, the script mostly about his own life, this is his life, murder, a simulacra, a comedy, women as decoration, Philip K. Dick self-aware characters, mancis = psychopaths?, pares live in Adolphville, Hebophreniacs = Ghanditown?, ObComs (obsessive compulsives), Schizs = Joan DA’rc, DaVinci Heights, Hamlet Hamlet, William Shakespeare, Hamlet as a Philip K. Dick novel, a commentary-guy, To be or not to be is a Philip K. Dick line, some of the best writing, briefly described aliens, Lord Runningclam, things are going to work out, geniusly brilliant hilarious funny and touching, no second or third agenda, socially inept slime mold, Shut Up Slime Mold, Lord RC sent me over, a venusian moss, pretty damn hilarious, time travel, cops, taking too much speed, what happened to the cop girlfriend who can go back in time?, Omega-13 (Galaxy Quest reference), a 12 by 12 foot area, like a real cop, a tiny little gun, a Philip K. Dick buddy cop movie with Lord Running Clam, rotoscope style, a TV clown (not a news clown), Bunny Hentman’s spaceship, wub fur slippers, homeopapes, a sanitarium 3 light years away, just because you have a mental disorder does that mean you can’t have a life?, three pares together, what was happening in PKD’s life during the time of this book’s writing, Dick had his wife committed, wracked by guilt, I’m the crazy one, who’s the crazy one, taking speed, the wife not supporting him, earn more money, if I can write faster…, a good book with serious problems, so many good ideas that are underdeveloped, Red Canada is full of simulacra, our reality, as soon as they can get drones that can walk around with faces on them, they look and act like people, getting into the ideas it is offering, Daniel Magaboom, the cylon problem, different kinds of people, reflecting how the characters act, love potions, exploring the ideas of autonomy, Galatic Pot-Healer, messages via your toilet bowl, raising a sunken cathedral, Glimmung, trying to be optimistic, furthering the agenda of beings all across the galaxy, Lord Runningclam does a Groot from Guardians Of The Galaxy, RBX303 is the blind best friend of Bunny, charming lechery, Lions Bloodregal, Bunny is behind it all, it’s all a shell game, Chuck Rittersdorf, crappy plans, that’s what happens, I don’t know what the plot of this book is, Chuck, Paul can be in the dep camp (Cotton Mather Estates), poor guy, Bains another name in The Man In The High Castle, the Philip K. Dick fan page, one funny scene, designed to be a comedy, a formal occasion to which you must attend you act like a simulacra of yourself, new Doctor Who, Gangers (dopplegangers), Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein, who’s on the list?, the saint psychotics, powers, when you talk to schizs you get the sense that things are different in their world, regular logic doesn’t apply, exploring mental issues (and doing a comedy piece), the big Steve Jobs thing, the reality distortion field is a real thing, the laws of social dynamics, physical impossibilities vs. social impossibilities, with think things are stable but they are fundamentally unstable, hugging the homeless, social reality, inverting social relations is possible, sort of a fantasy book for a minute, a metaphor almost, a mess that you can think and enjoy, works for us.

Ace Books - Clans Of The Alphane Moon by Philip K. Dick

Clans Of The Alphane Moon illustrated by Chris Moore

ACE F-309 Clans Of The Alphane Moon by Philip K. Dick

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #272 – READALONG: The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters

July 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #272 – Jesse, Jenny, Tamahome, and Julie Davis talk about The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters.

Talked about on today’s show:
2012, Amazon Vine, Android Karenina, Sense And Sensibility And Sea-Monsters, Quirk Books, nurturing writers, rage, apocalyptic stories, mysteries, The End Is Nigh, BRING HER TO ME, not-technically the end of the world, wretched stragglers, going bucket-list, Tam questions, “witty questions”, would you do a podcast if you knew the world was ending next year?, more classics, cozies, get your mind on someone else’s destruction, depressing things make Jesse feel good, “a jar for urine”, Jenny would forget reading, Tam would do “something involving women”, an existential novel, the mystery is secondary to the world building, planting potatoes, four or five months, brutish and horrible and short, the belt, the hoarding, money or love or jealousy or power, real random or artificial random, red herrings, Agatha Christie, the sister, hope, she networks well, the spotty cellphone service, the literary allusions, the romantic plot arc, a lot of ore to be mined, Detective Culverson, the mother and the father, the secondary characters, the coffee shop guy, the existential stuff, On The Beach by Nevil Shute, at the dentist, it’s all going to end, Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World, Peter Berkrot is a great narrator, “Hen” is brooding, Palace like Pallas, upon the bust of Pallas, The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe, nevermore, the reverential use of “freeze motherfucker”, it’s about existence, Salvador Dalí, finding reasons for existence, suicide, doing the thing that must be done, a little case of doubling, “I finally get to do what I wanted”, a noble element, the shooting, and then there’s the dog (a bichon frise), a very well put together book, doing the romance, Alan Moore’s Watchmen, Distant Pale Glimmers, a Marvel vs. DC movie, Firefly, A Good Story Is Hard To Find, Reading Envy, Batman, emancipation or execution, the guns anomaly (AK-47), the trilogy, the second book, Concord, New Hampshire, “Live Free or Die”, Texas, “live free, then die”, first person present tense, “that noir style”, treasuring the moments, The Star by Arthur C. Clarke, Christmas, the message, where’s the seed bank on the Moon?, “think of your life as a story”, the key “Truth”, the most important thing ever, TV news is telling shitty stories, 2011 Norway Attacks, “psycho” vs. “psychotic“, “you’re not the main character”, the villain of the piece, “it would be noble, except…”, an intensification of everyday life, the rebuilding, societal change, a “novel” idea, World War Z by Max Brooks, The Reapers Are The Angels by Alden Bell, the Edgar Award, the snow, the animals, “maybe the science is off”, denying reality, seeing it with a telescope, denial doesn’t help you, The Jilting of Granny Weatherall by Katherine Anne Porter, coming to grips with mortality, assisted living movie group, alternative medicine and false hope, “a natural reaction”, quit your job and go crazy, spend time with your friends, who cares about podcasting?, “the secret to podcasting is that it’s an excuse to spend time with your friends”, podcast is a great medium, unlike The Geeks Guide To The Galaxy, “that’s not what the podcast is”, religious books, A Good Story Is Hard To Find, Reading Envy, The Inklings, the formatting is facilitating, proper flow, “super-consumable”, re-readers, “this makes you think about what’s important in your life”, “a thought provoking book”, The Source, Hank’s purpose, ‘locked town mystery’, the process, empathy, a grubby little murder, caring, the insurance office, Hank Palace cares about all these stories, a Star Trek reference, The Inner Light, Picard learns to play the flute,

The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters

Watchmen

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #109 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: The Hanging Stranger by Philip K. Dick

May 23, 2011 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #109 – a complete and unabridged reading of The Hanging Stranger by Philip K. Dick. First up, the complete story from Wonder Audio, followed by a discussion of it with Jesse, Scott, and Tamahome.

Talked about on today’s show:
Wonder Audio, Philip K. Dick, The Twilight Zone, Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, The Puppet Masters by Robert A. Heinlein, what is the Philip K. Dick way, empathy, a lack of empathy, paranoia, Science Fiction or Fantasy?, definitely a horror story, not a lot of technology, aliens, other dimensions, Lovecraftian!, who is the titular stranger?, Byron Sonne, Bradley Manning, The Invasion, what’s the purpose of controlling the humans?, Passengers by Robert Silverberg, The Hidden, Men In Black, gods, scary picture of Beelzebub, The Walking Dead, third person – deep penetration vs. omniscient, Fair Game by Philip K. Dick (SFFaudio Podcast #097), To Serve Man by Damon Knight, honeypot, would be cool: a TV series with a new PKD story every week, The Ray Bradbury Theater, H.G. Wells, The Star by H.G. Wells, next week: Dream Park by Larry Niven and Steven Barnes, Next A Good Story Is Hard To Find podcast: Stories Of Your Life by Ted Chiang, Fallen is brown!, Elias Koteas

Science Fiction Adventures December 1953 - COVER

Science Fiction Adventures - December 1953 - Table Of Contents

The Hanging Stranger by Philip K. Dick

The Hanging Stranger - illustration by Smith

Posted by Jesse Willis

Review of Inside Man by H.L. Gold

July 6, 2005 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Reviews 

Science Fiction - Inside Man by H.L. GoldInside Man
By H.L. Gold; Read by William Mills, Sam Gartner and
Roxanne Mills
1 MP3 File – Approx. 32 Minutes [ABRIDGED]
Publisher: Renaissance E Books / REB Audio
Published: 2005
Themes: / Science Fiction / Humor / Empathy / Telepathy / Psychology / Domesticity /

Why would Lester Shay need anything new to occupy his mind? He is a newlywed of just 3 months! But, when you can’t shut out the pained emotions and feelings of the machines with which you live, even a passionate young bride isn’t quite enough!

First published in the October 1965 issue of Galaxy magazine, the 15th Anniversary issue, Inside Man garner a Nebula nomination for best science fiction short story of the year. But despite the nomination this is, by no means, a classic of the genre. Horace Gold was a far better editor than he was a writer. Despite the caveats this is a well produced multiple voice reading of the exact sort of story that appeared in Galaxy magazine under Gold’s editorial reign. Funny and original. And though hearing the mid-twentieth century values voiced today seem at best rather quaint, this short story still yields an interesting twist. The readers’ voices are clear and this a relatively straightforward and professional production. The highlight for me though is actually the three minute biographical and historical introduction to the story written by Jean Marie Stine. It is always a good idea to place an older story in its context. But I must say the spacey music that accompanies the introduction doesn’t actually improve it. Inside Man is available now as a high quality MP3 through Fictionwise.com.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Review of The Callahan Chronicals by Spider Robinson

March 28, 2004 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Reviews 

Science Fiction Audiobooks - The Callahan Chronicals by Spider RobinsonThe Callahan Chronicals
By Spider Robinson; read by Barrett Whitener
12 cassettes – 18 hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2003
ISBN: 0786124601
Themes: / Science Fiction / Telepathy / Empathy / Callahan’s Place / Extraterrestrials / Time Travel

There is nothing which has been contrived by man by which so much happiness has been produced as by a good tavern or inn. — Samuel Johnson

With that quote begins Spider Robinson’s omnibus collection of short stories entitled The Callahan Chronicals. Included in this audiobook are the collections Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon, Time Travelers Strictly Cash, and Callahan’s Secret. Time Travelers is not included complete – in the original paperback, some non-Callahan stories appeared that are not collected here.

The stories center around a bunch of very good folks that spend quite a bit of time at Callahan’s Place, a bar owned and tended by Mike Callahan. In the author’s words, Callahan’s is “an environment in which shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased, and the puns really suck.” It’s a place that a person can bring his or her troubles, and find people that are willing to listen – and believe. A typical story finds the patrons enjoying each other’s company (often tossing horrible puns at each other) when someone enters and tells his or her story. This person is changed by the experience of sharing his or her troubles.

Some of the stories are marginally science fiction, but most involve some kind of science fiction idea engendered in one of the characters. Telepaths, time travellers, extra-terrestrials, and even Spider Robinson himself are among the bar’s visitors. Robinson is able to reach an emotional depth not often seen in science fiction. Each story is touching in its own way, and they often reach peaks of joy and depths of pain, all within minutes of audio. In short, these stories pack an emotional punch. I found them difficult to listen to one after the other, as a person can only feel so much. They would be better heard individually, with a bit of time to digest and reflect in-between. I plan to revisit them in this way – they are worth listening to again, and are worth the pause.

Barrett Whitener is exceptional here. He understands the material and adds just the right touch in nearly every story. No easy task with these touching stories. A job very well done.

At the beginning of the audio, there are three introductions. The first is titled “Backward”, written by Spider Robinson for the entire volume. Next is “Spider Robinson: The SF Writer as Empath” by Ben Bova, which provides a look into the life of an editor as he describes Spider’s first sale to Analog. Then comes a forward written by Robinson for the original version of Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon. All of them were interesting, and I’m glad Blackstone left them in there.

I was disappointed only by the fact that there are no breaks between these stories. The final sentence of a story is read, immediately followed by the title of the next, and straight on till morning. I would have appreciated some kind of break there.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson