On ABC Radio Australia! Short Story: March 7,…

On ABC Radio Australia!

Short Story: March 7, 2004 at 8.30am

Real Men

URL: http://www.abc.net.au/rn/arts/sstory/stories/s1041881.htm

by Rosaleen Love

Rosaleen Love is a Melbourne writer who writes on science and technology from a number of angles, including this example of science fantasy – or is it science fact?

Airplay: March 7, 2004 at 3pm

An Eye on Venus

URL: http://www.abc.net.au/rn/arts/airplay/s1041611.htm

by Paul Livingstone

Molly and Reg Winter have been to the shops. As they have done for the past thirty-two years. An Eye On Venus is about an unusual afternoon in their lives. On their way home to Terrigal, Molly and Reg Winter are abducted by aliens. Two very ordinary people, in an extraordinary situation.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Review of The Small Assassin by Ray Bradbury

Science Fiction Audiobooks - The Small Assassin by Ray BradburyThe Small Assassin
By Ray Bradbury; Read by Ray Bradbury
1 Cassette – 39 minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Caedmon
Published: 1981 – (OUT OF PRINT & HARD TO FIND)
ISBN: NONE (Library of Congress #91-740020)
Themes: / Fantasy / Childbirth / Babies /

Ray Bradbury is different from most speculative fiction authors. His stories feel almost organic – the ideas in them seem to grow out of a small seed rather than to be built, there is a structure present but the elegant symmetry of his tales appears to come solely from their functionality rather than deliberate act of ornamentation. This is doubly true in the case of “The Small Assassin”. Written in 1945, when he was only 25 years old, Bradbury sold the story to Dime Mystery Magazine and it appeared in the November 1946 issue. It tells the story of a brand new family, the father is a proud parent, the mother is dutiful but worried and the baby is trying to kill his parents. Its a slight premise, the story is short and it needs to be for the limited range of consequences it can explore. But its successful and leaves the listener with just that much more cautious about assumptions. A lesson Bradbury teaches well. Caedmon was the pioneer of audiobooks (Caedmon is now an imprint of HarperAudio), and like many of its earliest recordings it liked to have authors read their own stories. Bradbury reads his own tale here and he reads it well.

Review of Tales with a Twist by Jerald Fine

Fantasy Audiobook - Tales With A Twist by Jerald FineTales With a Twist
By Jerald Fine; Read by Jerald Fine
2 CD’s – 2 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tales with a Twist
Published: 2004
Themes: / Fantasy / Horror / Short Stories / Alamo / The Mob / Nature / Aging / Ghosts /

This audiobook by Jerald Fine delivers what it promises: five tales in the tradition of The Twilight Zone. The tales:

“Twilight of Youth”: A man who loathes old people gets his.
“The Hit”: A cautionary tale for any future employee of organized crime.
“The Wave”: The world’s greatest surfer tries a tidal wave.
“Return to the Alamo”: Could modern paratroopers make a difference at the Alamo?
“Fog Encounter”: A headless phantom stalks a community.

The stories capture the feel of the old Twilight Zone series, and each tale, as the title promises, ends with a twist. The audio is narrated by the author, who has a great dramatic voice. That voice in combination with some of the underlying music creates a few points that are TOO dramatic, but overall the balance is very good. There are places in the book where Fine is joined by a female voice, and I was heartened to see that the he saids/she saids were removed, and the actors were allowed to act where appropriate.

The result is a very good audiobook by Jerald Fine. Tales with a Twist is five stories with a classic feel read with good tone and energy. This book can be purchase on the author’s site at: www.taleswithatwist.com.

A note on packaging: I do not have in my hands the final package – the author informs me that the final package will include “a completed cover with barcodes in a double jewel box case.”

Review of Big Big Space by Roger Gregg

SFFaudio Review

Big Big Space: The Complete Series
By Roger Gregg; Performed by a full cast
3 CD’s – 3 Hours [AUDIO DRAMA]
Publisher: Crazy Dog Audio Theatre
Published: 2001
ISBN: 689232069827
Themes: / Science Fiction / Comedy / Audio Drama /

Included in this 3 CD set are three hilarious one-hour audio dramas in 6 episodes – The Cabaret of Forbidden Celestial Delights, Big Jim Chancer and the Space Pirates, and The Zombies of Dr. Krell. The shows were originally broadcast on Ireland’s RTE Radio 1.

The cast of characters includes the crew of the starship Amadan: Captain Roslyn Sane, First Officer Hoax Minstrel, Counselor Disco Trojan, and Robot RomManDroid. The scripts have a lot of fun at the expense of the genre, and at the mainstays of Star Trek especially. Captain Roslyn Sane sounds and acts much like Trek’s Captain Janeway, and David Murray is brilliant as First Officer Hoax Minstrel – I swear he’s performing the part as “William Shatner as Captain Kirk” with hilarious results. The crew experiences adventures, dealing with teenage fractal quarks, evil accountants, and demanding extras, and poking witty, merciless fun at science fiction along the way.

All three shows were recorded live – live cast, live music, live effects, and live audience – which harkens back to the golden age of radio comedy. The shows are thoroughly entertaining and very funny. The live audience obviously enjoyed themselves, and so did I.

Don’t take my word for it! Listen to one of the episodes (“Who’s Afraid of Rotwang Krell”) at the Crazy Dog website.

The set is also available from ZBS.

The finalists for this year’s Audie Awards were an…

The finalists for this year’s Audie Awards were announced on Feb. 23rd. Here are some genre-related nominees:

The finalists for the SCIENCE FICTION award are:

The Callahan Chronicles

Written by: Spider Robinson

Read by: Barrett Whitener

Blackstone Audiobooks

Darwin’s Children

Written by: Greg Bear

Read by: Scott Brick

Books on Tape, A Division of Random House, Inc.

Dune: The Machine Crusade

Written by: Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Read by: Scott Brick

Audio Renaissance, A Division of Holtzbrinck Publishers, LLC, and Books on Tape, A Division of Random House, Inc.

Monstrous Regiment

Written by: Terry Pratchett

Read by: Stephen Briggs

Harper Audio

Still Life With Crows

Written by: Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Read by: Rene Auberjonois

Time Warner AudioBooks

Among the nominees for CHILDREN’S TITLES FOR AGES 8+ is:

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Written by: J.K. Rowling

Read by: Jim Dale

Listening Library

Phoenix also shows up in the PACKAGE DESIGN category, and as a nomination for Jim Dale for SOLO NARRATION – MALE. George Guidall is up for the same award for Don Quixote from Recorded Books, and Campbell Scott for Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake.

And in the AUDIO DRAMA category:

The Chronicles of Narnia

Written by: C. S. Lewis

Performed by a Full Cast

Focus on the Family

which also appears in the PACKAGE DESIGN and ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION categories.

See all the nominees at the Audio Publisher’s Association website. The winners will be selected on June 4 at the Audie Awards, a black-tie event at the Harold Washington Public Library Center in Chicago.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson

I spent Thursday at Life, the Universe, and Everyt…

SFFaudio News

I spent Thursday at Life, the Universe, and Everything XXII, the 22nd annual science fiction symposium held at Brigham Young University in Provo, UT. While there, I got to see a live broadcast of the weekly science fiction talk show I-SCI-FI.

I-SCI-FI is broadcast live on Thursday nights from 7-9pm Mountain time. I liken the listening experience to meeting up with some good friends once a week and talking science fiction. The show’s main focus is media (television and movies), but they also include interviews with science fiction and fantasy authors.

Shown in the picture is the I-SCI-FI crew: from left to right is engineer Brady, HariKarrie, Captain T’Rex, and Jedi Joe.

On Thursday, I-SCI-FI interviewed Sam Longoria, the media Guest of Honor at the symposium. They then interviewed fantasy author Victoria Strauss via telephone about her new book, The Burning Land. Last, they played an interview with Star Wars novelist Timothy Zahn, which had been recorded a week earlier at a local Barnes and Noble. In between, they had a trivia contest both for the live audience and the online audience. It was great fun. Be sure to try them out!

NOTE: While you listen to I-SCI-FI live, visit the chat room! If I’m in there, my username is MrScott.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson