LibriVox: Mary Shelley, William Morris and Horace Walpole

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxA recent flurry of furious audiobook cataloging over the past week on has resulted in a massive new library of old SFF listens! Here are three old novels, almost ancient in fact. Now before you get too excited, they will be rather difficult listening for beginners – but, for a select few connoisseurs, these are priceless gems.

First up, from the author of the first Science Fiction novel….

LibriVox Science Fiction Audiobook - The Last Man by Mary ShelleyThe Last Man
By Mary Shelley; Read by various
32 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 18 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 9th, 2008
The Last Man is an early post-apocalyptic science fiction novel by Mary Shelley, which was first published in 1826. The book tells of a future world that has been ravaged by a plague. The plague gradually kills off all people. Lionel Verney, central character, son of a nobleman who gambled himself into poverty, finds himself immune after being attacked by an infected “negro,” and copes with a civilization that is gradually dying out around him.

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Next, the first modern Fantasy novel (chosen from our 2nd Annual SFFaudio Challenge and nearly a year in the making) way to go Cori!

LibriVox Fantasy Audiobook - The Wood Beyond The World by William MorrisThe Wood Beyond the World
By William Morris; Read by Cori Samuel
12 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 5 Hours 20 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 9th, 2008
The Wood Beyond The World is a fantasy novel by William Morris, perhaps the first modern fantasy writer to unite an imaginary world with the element of the supernatural, and thus the precursor of much of present-day fantasy literature. His use of archaic language has been seen by some modern readers as making his fiction difficult to read, but brings a wonderful atmosphere to the telling. Morris considered his fantasies a revival of the medieval tradition of chivalrous romances. In consequence, they tend to have sprawling plots of strung-together adventures. In this story, Walter leaves his father and his own unfaithful wife and sets sail in search of adventure. This he finds aplenty, encountering love, treachery and magic in the Wood of the title and travelling through the Mountains of the Folk of the Bears. But can he find happiness and peace by means of this Quest?

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And, The forerunner for both, the first gothic novel!

LibriVox Gothic Novel - The Castle Of Otranto by Horace WalpoleThe Castle of Otranto
By Horace Walpole; Read by Great Plains
6 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 4 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 6th, 2008
The Castle of Otranto is a 1764 novel by Horace Walpole. It is generally held to be the first gothic novel, initiating a literary genre which would become extremely popular in the later 18th century and early 19th century. Thus, Castle, and Walpole by extension is arguably the forerunner to such authors as Ann Radcliffe, Bram Stoker, Daphne du Maurier, and Stephen King.

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Posted by Jesse Willis

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