The Star by H.G. Wells

November 13, 2013 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

The Star by H.G. Wells

The Star by H.G. Wells - illustration by L. Marold from The Graphic, December 1897

Here’s a portion of the Wikipedia entry for The Star:

“[The Star] can be credited with having created a Science Fiction sub-genre depicting a planet or star colliding, or near-colliding with Earth – such as the 1933 novel When Worlds Collide by Philip Wylie and Edwin Balmer, (made into a film in 1951), Fritz Leiber’s The Wanderer (1965), and Lucifer’s Hammer by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle (1977).”

Here is the editorial introduction (presumably by Hugo Gernsback himself) to the story as found in the Amazing Stories, June 1926 printing:

“Here is an impressive story based on the inter-action of planetary bodies and of the sun ipon them. A great star is seen approaching the earth. At first it is only an object of interest to the general public, but there is an astronomer on the earth who is watching each phase and making mathematical calculations, for he knows the intimate relation of gravitation between bodies and the effect on rotating bodies of the same force from an outside source. He fears all sorts of wreckage on our earth. He arns the people, but they as usual, discount all he says and label him mad. But he was not mad. H.G. Wells, in his own way, gives us a picturesque description of the approach of the new body through long days adn nights – he tells how the earth and natural phenomena of the earth will re-act. Though this star never touches our sphere, the devastation and destruction wrought bu it are complete and horrible. The story is correct in its astronomical aspects.”

Without a significant viewpoint character H.G. Wells’ The Star relates, with elegiac cosmicism, of the destruction of Earth and its inhabitants. There is in this story a dispassionate reverence for both the blind omnipotence of nature and mortal humanity’s perception of its place within it.

365 Days Of AstronomyThe Star
By H.G. Wells; Read by Pamela Quevillon
1 |MP3| – Approx. 35 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Podcaster: 365 Days Of Astronomy
Podcast: October 20, 2013
Astronomers discover a bright new star in the heavens rushing headlong towards the Earth on a collision course. First published in The Graphic, December 1897.

LibriVoxThe Star
By H.G. Wells; Read by Heather Phillips
1 |MP3| – Approx. 30 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: 2010
Astronomers discover a bright new star in the heavens rushing headlong towards the Earth on a collision course. First published in The Graphic, December 1897.

LibriVoxThe Star
By H.G. Wells; Read by Linda Dodge
1 |MP3| – Approx. 32 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: 2009
Astronomers discover a bright new star in the heavens rushing headlong towards the Earth on a collision course. First published in The Graphic, December 1897.

PeopletalkThe Star
By H.G. Wells; Read by Jenny Rowe
1 |MP3| or |MP3| – Approx. 30 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Podcaster: Peopletalk
Podcast: September 18, 2006
Astronomers discover a bright new star in the heavens rushing headlong towards the Earth on a collision course. First published in The Graphic, December 1897.

Here is a |PDF| made from the publication in Amazing Stories, June 1926.

Here’s an easy reading version, suitable for printing |PDF|.

And, here’s a Spanish language translation |PDF| that’s beautifully illustrated.

The Star by H.G. Wells - illustration from Amazing Stories, June 1926

The Star by H.G. Wells - illustrated by Oscar Palacios

The Star by H.G. Wells - illustrated by Oscar Palacios

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #228 – READALONG: Last And First Men by Olaf Stapledon

September 2, 2013 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Podcasts 

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #228 – Jesse and Jenny talk about the Last And First Men by Olaf Stapledon.

Talked about on today’s show:
the near and far future, not a novel, an imagined planetary history, the scope, Penguin Books, philosophy, the introduction, The Iron Heel by Jack London, a future history, human civilizations, two thousand million years (two billion years), universes => galaxy, man is a small part of the universe, Starmaker by Olaf Stapledon, Doctor Who, 2001: A Space Odyssey, what the plot would look like if there was one, the eighteen periods of man, evolution and construction, it’s set in 1930, is there ever an end to humanity?, Last Men In London by Olaf Stapledon, Last And First Men was popular in its day, Stapledon served in the ambulance service in WWI, plotlessness, period themes, the flying theme, the depletion of fossil fuels, The Mote In God’s Eye by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle, Venus, Mars, Neptune, the Martians, the Venusians, the genocide on Venus, Luke Burrage (the Science Fiction Book Review Podcast), racism, a Science Fiction mythology, the poetic musical ending, deep time, to the end of the Earth and beyond, Stapledon as an historian, civilizations always fall, there’s no one thing that ends civilizations, humanity as a symphony, the returns to savagery, establishing the pattern, Arthur C. Clarke, The House On The Borderlands by William Hope Hodgson, The Night Lands, The Time Machine by H.G. Wells, H.P. Lovecraft and cosmicism, the Wikipedia entry for Last And First Men, Fritz Leiber, Forrest Ackerman, scientificion, matchless poignancy, S. Fowler Wright, Lovecraft’s love of the stars (astronomy), one of the species of man is a monkey, another a rabbit, no jokes but perhaps humour, a cosmic joke, monkeys have made human their slaves, Planet Of The Apes, an ability to hear at the subatomic level, intelligence, a fourteen foot brain supported by ferroconcrete, obsession with gold, obsession with diamonds, pulping people, it’s written like a history textbook or essays, the Patagonia explosion, the upstart volcanoes, Earth Abides by George R. Stewart, The Scarlet Plague by Jack London, chiseling knowledge into granite, Olaf loved coming up with different sexual relationships, the 20 year pregnancy, suicide, euthanasia, an unparalleled imagination, groupthink, telepathy, oversimplification, we must press on, the baboon-like submen, the seal-like Submen, the divergence of man into other ecological niches, the number of ants in New York, ecosystems, nuclear weapons, robots are missing, where is the robot man?, the over-emphasis on fossil fuels as the only source of energy, if you could see us now, post-humans, ultimately a love letter to humanity, not aww but awwww!, Starmaker as a masterpiece, Sirius, uplifting a dog, a fantasy of love and discord, dog existentialism, who am I and where is my bone?, Olaf Stapledon in the PUBLIC DOMAIN, influential vs. famous, a very different read.

Last And First Men by Olaf Stapledon

Olaf Stapledon illustration by Neil Austin

Posted by Jesse Willis

BBC Radio 3: The Star by H.G. Wells (as read by Sir Patrick Stewart)

June 14, 2010 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Online Audio 

SFFaudio Online Audio

BBC Radio 3The Star is yet another plank in the theory supporting the idea that Science Fiction was almost single-handedly created by H.G. Wells. The Star, is a tale of the ultimate in habitat destruction (poof goes the planet). Here’s part of the current Wikipedia entry for this generative tale of planet cracking:

“[The Star] can be credited with having created a Science Fiction sub-genre depicting a planet or star colliding, or near-colliding with Earth – such as the 1933 novel When Worlds Collide by Philip Wylie and Edwin Balmer, (made into a film in 1951), Fritz Leiber’s The Wanderer (1965), and Lucifer’s Hammer by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle (1977).”

RadioTimes - Patrick Stewart Reads The Star by H.G. WellsThe Star
By H.G. Wells; Read by Sir Patrick Stewart
1 |MP3| – Approx. 21 Minutes [UNABRIDGED?]
Broadcaster: BBC Radio 3
Broadcast: Tuesday 7 September 2004
Provider: Radio Mensa
Astronomers discover a bright new star in the heavens rushing headlong towards the Earth on a collision course. First published in 1897.

[Thanks Bill]

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: Short Science Fiction Stories Vol. 19

July 26, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
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SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxIt seems LibriVox has started adding a few more credits to its collections starting with this volume. Besides the narrators, this collection was created by the following LibriVox volunteers:

Book Coordinator: Gregg Margarite
Dedicated Proof-Listener: julicarter
Meta-Coordinator/Cataloging: Lucy Burgoyne

Stories new to this collection include:

Stopover by William Gerken. This is a well written but annoying story. It is one of better parapsychology short stories, but that isn’t saying much. John W. Campbell was absolutely obsessed with paraspychological ESP bunk – it makes for very repetitive reading. This story’s setting, in a post-apocalyptic USA, is vivid – and the characters are emotionally realistic -too bad about the ESP crap. Bellona Times, the narrator, has a few missteps in this one – including the reading “psi talents” as “pee-ess-eye talents.”

Something Will Turn Up by David Mason. The beatnik/hippy repairman, and his dialogue, in this tale are a real hoot. It’s more a Fantasy tale than an SF one, but its got a beatnik TV repairman so I’m still happy. Read by Bellona Times again without any serious flaws but with a few little ones here and there. Times snaps his fingers and whistles – which to me is a narrator double no-no. There’s also a word or two improperly read, notably “reversed” read as “reverse.”

The Sargasso Of Space by Edmond Hamilton. This is a fast paced space opera (and mystery) about an interplanetary spacecraft that’s run out of gas. Gregg Margarite continues to kick ass as a narrator. He’s no vocal chameleon but he’s just a few tweaks away from being a pro sounding narrator. He seems to choose some of the better stories too. I think he’s super cool. Maybe he’ll be my friend? That’d be cool.

LibriVox - Short Science Fiction Collection Vol. 019Short Science Fiction Stories Vol. 19
By various; Read by various
10 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 4 Hours 41 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
Science Fiction is speculative literature that generally explores the consequences of ideas which are roughly consistent with nature and scientific method, but are not facts of the author’s contemporary world. The stories often represent philosophical thought experiments presented in entertaining ways. Protagonists typically “think” rather than “shoot” their way out of problems, but the definition is flexible because there are no limits on an author’s imagination. The reader-selected stories presented here were written prior to 1962 and became US public domain texts when their copyrights expired.

Podcast feed:

http://librivox.org/bookfeeds/short-science-fiction-collection-19.xml

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

Fantastic Universe August/September 1953All Cats are Gray
By Andre Norton; Read by Gregg Margarite
1 |MP3| – Approx. 16 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
An odd story, made up of oddly assorted elements that include a man, a woman, a black cat, a treasure—and an invisible being that had to be seen to be believed. – Under normal conditions a whole person has a decided advantage over a handicapped one. But out in deep space the normal may be reversed—for humans at any rate. First published using Norton’s Andrew North pseudonym in Fantastic Universe Science Fiction, August–September 1953.

LibriVox - Beyond Lies The Wub by Philip K. DickBeyond Lies The Wub
By Phillip K. Dick; Read by Tom Hackett
1 |MP3| – Approx. 16 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
The slovenly wub might well have said: Many men talk like philosophers and live like fools. From Planet Stories July 1952.

LibriVox - The Gallery by Rog PhillipsThe Gallery
By Rog Phillips; Read by Ted Ryan
– [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
Wherever he went Arthur felt the power behind the lens. – Aunt Matilda needed him desperately, but when he arrived she did not want him and neither did anyone else in his home town. From Amazing Stories January 1959.

LibriVox - The Happy Unfortunate by Robert SilverbergThe Happy Unfortunate
By Robert Silverberg; Read by Gregg Margarite
1 |MP3| – Approx. 39 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
Dekker, back from space, found great physical changes in the people of Earth; changes that would have horrified him five years before. But now, he wanted to be like the rest—even if he had to lose an eye and both ears to do it. From Amazing Stories December 1957.

LibriVox - The Man Who Saw The Future by Edmond HamiltonThe Man Who Saw The Future
By Edmond Hamilton; Read by Xanderphilips
1 |MP3| – Approx. [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
“Jean de Marselait, Inquisitor Extraordinary of the King of France, raised his head from the parchments that littered the crude desk at which he sat. His glance shifted along the long stone-walled, torchlit room to the file of mail-clad soldiers who stood like steel statues by its door. A word from him and two of them sprang forward.” First published in Amazing Stories, October 1930. Later reprinted in the February 1961 issue of Amazing Stories.

LibriVox - A Matter Of Proportion by Anne WalkerA Matter Of Proportion
By Anne Walker; Read by Dale A. Bade
1 |MP3| – Approx. 37 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
In order to make a man stop, you must convince him that it’s impossible to go on. Some people, though, just can’t be convinced. From Astounding Science Fiction August 1959.

Astounding Stories September 1931Sargasso Of Space
By Edmond Hamilton; Read by Greg Margarite
1 |MP3| – Approx. 50 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
She was floating along the wreck-pack’s edge. Helpless, doomed, into the graveyard of space floats the wrecked freighter Pallas. From Astounding Stories September 1931.


LibriVox - Something Will Turn Up by David MasonSomething Will Turn Up
By David Mason; Read by Bellona Times
1 |MP3| – Approx. 17 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
Err … maybe it had to do with this being a non-Parity universe, perhaps? Some things can’t be simply inverted, after all… From Analog February 1963.


Fantastic Universe September 1957Stopover
By William Gerken; Read by Bellona Times
1 |MP3| – Approx. 23 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
What will the world be like, the day after Tomorrow, for the lonely ones who will have talents that others will half fear, half envy? William Gerken describes this strange world in which young and old will have to find new values and pursue new dreams, as they search for the answer… From Fantastic Universe September 1957.

LibriVox - Toy Shop by Harry HarrisonToy Shop
By Harry Harrison; Read by Xanderphillips
1 |MP3| – Approx. 10 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: June 23, 2009
The gadget was strictly, beyond any question, a toy. Not a real, workable device. Except for the way it could work under a man’s mental skin… From Analog April 1962.

Posted by Jesse Willis