Spider Robinson reads In Fading Suns And Dying Moons by John Varley and Chapter 1 of Bad News by Donald E. Westlake

SFFaudio Online Audio

Spider On The Web - Spider Robinson’s podcastSpider Robinson beat us to the punch by a few hours talking about Donald Westlake’s death on his latest podcast. As usual there’s a lot more going on in the latest show too! He reads chapter one of Bad News, one of Donald E. Westlake’s famous “Dortmunder” crime/comedy novels. And on top of all the music Spider plays there’s a complete and unabridged reading of a John Varley story too…

Stars: Original Stories Based On The Songs Of Janis IanIn Fading Suns And Dying Moons
By John Varley; Read by Spider Robinson
Podcaster: Spider On The Web
Podcast: January 4th 2009
The story of an unstoppable alien invasion of Earth. Curiously the aliens look human and speak English (and every other language on Earth) and constantly reference Edwin Abbot’s Flatland: A Romance Of Many Dimensions. Their mission? Seize all of the butterflies on the planet.

Podcast feed:


Posted by Jesse Willis



Aural Noir: News

Chivers Sound Library - Cops And Robbers by Donald E. WestlakeChivers Sound Library - Put A Lid On It by Donald E. WestlakeBooks On Tape - The Ax by Donald E. WestlakeChivers Sound Library - Trust Me On This by Donald E. WestlakeBooks On Tape - The Black Ice Score by Richard Stark (AKA Donald E. Westlake)

Books On Tape - Smoke by Donald E. WestlakeAudio Editions - The Fugitive Pigeon by Donald E. WestlakeBooks On Tape - Bad News by Donald E. WestlakeDurkin Hayes Audio - Tomorrow’s Crimes by Donald E. WestlakeChivers Sound Library - The Hook by Donald E. Westlake

Donald E. WestlakeDONALD E. WESTLAKE (1933 – 2008) is dead.

An Adventure Mystery, Crime, Noir, Science Fiction, Fantasy and AWESOME writer is DEAD.

And that really sucks.

A prolific, award-winning Mystery Grand Master, the creator of the well loved Dortmunder and Parker books died on New Year’s Eve 2008. He was just 75.

According to the obituary it was a sudden heart attack on New Year’s Eve 2008. He died while on vacation in San Tancho, Mexico.

Westlake was an immensely successful and influential author. Having written more than a book a year since the 1950s. He wrote fiction, in varied genres, non-fiction and even a few screenplays. Never again shall Richard Stark, Tucker Coe, Samuel Holt, Edwin West, John B. Allan, Judson Jack Carmichael, Curt Clark, Timothy J. Culver, J. Morgan Cunningham, Alan Marshall, Alan Marsh, or Donald Westlake pen another work, and for that fact alone my world is a far crappier world.

Many of the obituaries you will read about him will talk about his Edgar Award wins, acclaim for his various works, or his Academy award nominated screenplay of The Grifters (based on the awesome novel by Jim Thompson). That’s not for me. I’m here to praise his writing. Westlake was a book-writer first. He dabbled in Hollywood (and came out with some great stories) but much of his work there was really lame

Thus I will only speak of my fondness for his books. It started as a whirlwind romance… and it really was love at first sight. I was introduced to Westlake indirectly by a recommendation of a fictional character in another author’s novel. The character (Bernie Rhodenbarr) recommended I give a book by Richard Stark a try. He read just a few lines from what I at first assumed was just a fake book. But I was so entranced, from the snippets that I got curious, hopeful even. It turned out that this “Parker” character that Bernie was reading to me about was in fact a real character in a real book!

It sounded really good and so I made my way to the shelves of my local bookstore and started buying.

Soon after I was buying every book by “Richard Stark” I could lay my hands on. I even convinced my local library to try to get me an inter-library loan for an out of print and very rare (and extremely expensive) Stark novel (Plunder Squad). She had to get it from a library in the Yukon for me. I then discovered a novel in the “Parker series” written by a guy named “Westlake” – it turned out that I had the information slightly off though as Westlake was Stark and the novel in question wasn’t a real novel as much as a novel within another novel (Jimmy The Kid). So I tracked down the rest of that series (the “Dortmunder” series). Since then I came to a major conclusion about the man:

Donald Westlake wrote great books.

I’ve never read a bad Westlake chapter, I’ve never even read a bad Westlake sentence. His books on every subject and genre are full of good writing, fine entertainment and a joy for books.

Westlake is gone.

Westlake was one of my all time favourite authors.

The news that Westlake has died really pisses me off.

I sure wish Parker were around to pull off one more heist.

He was so bad he could have stolen Westlake back for us.

One Of Us Is Wrong by Samuel Holt (Donald E. Westlake)Kahawa by Donald E. WestlakeA Likely Story by Donald E. WestlakePolice Procedurals (Academy Mystery Novellas 2) includes The Sound Of Murder by Donald WestlakeTwo Much by Donald E. WestlakeThe Operator (original title: Killing Time) by Donald Westlake

The Smashers (original title: The Mercenaries) by Donald E. WestlakeGod Save The Mark by Donald E. WestlakeEnough (two novellas: A Travesty and Ordo) by Donald E. WestlakeHigh Adventure by Donald E. WestlakeMurder Among Children (written as by “Tucker Coe”) by Donald WestlakeKilling Time by Donald E. Westlake

Posted by Jesse Willis


Maria Lectrix Podcast: The Risk Profession by Donald E. Westlake

SFFaudio Online Audio

Maureen O’Brien, of the prolific Maria Lectrix podcast, has wrapped up her reading of Donald E. Westlake’s The Risk Profession. This tale was originally published in the March 1961 issue of Amazing Stories magazine. It was later collected in Tomorrow’s Crimes (a collection of Science Fiction by Westlake). I’m a big fan of all of Westlake’s writing, he’s prolific, and he never disappoints. Here’s the intro teaser for this solid tale…

The men who did dangerous work had a special kind of insurance policy. But when somebody wanted to collect on that policy, the claims investigator suddenly became a member of …

Science Fiction Audiobook - The Risk Profession by Donald E. WestlakeThe Risk Profession
By Donald E. Westlake; Read by Maureen O’Brien
4 MP3 Files – Approx. 1 Hour 24 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Podcaster: Maria Lectrix
Podcast: November 2008
Provider: Archive.org
In space, you still need insurance investigators. And anywhere there’s people, there’s fraud, theft, and murder. Donald E. Westlake is famous for his mysteries and thrillers. In this 1961 story, he shows us a future that’s got a little sense of wonder and a lot of human nature.
Part 1 |MP3| Part 2 |MP3| Part 3 |MP3| Part 4 |MP3|

Posted by Jesse Willis



The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #012 – Our sickest show yet. How sick? Well, I’d like Stanley Kubrick to direct the next Conan movie. We also talk about the SFFaudio Challenge #3, which is not as bad as Red Sonja (1985).

Talked about on today’s show:
Fallout 3 has a built-in radio drama (The Adventures Of Daring Dashwood), The Little Book, Selden Edwards, time travel, The Book Of Lies, Brad Meltzer, Nelson DeMille, The Border, The Third SFFaudio Challenge, Muureen O’Brien, Maria Lectrix Podcast, The Risk Profession, Donald E. Westlake, Spider Robinson, John D. MacDonald, Travis McGee, John Varley, The Persistence Of Vision, Scott Brick, Aural Noir, The Case Of The Dancing Sandwiches, Frederic Brown, The Fabulous Clipjoint, H. Beam Piper, Murder In The Gunroom, Galaxy Press, Elantris, Brandon Sanderson, Dennis Stocks, LibriVox, Masters Of Space, E.E. “Doc” Smith, E. Everett Evans, R.J. Davis, BSAP’s Queen Of The Black Coast, Robert E. Howard, Bill Hollweg, Stevie Farnaby, Brian Murphy, The Silver Key, Brett Ratner’s new Conan movie, HBO’s new A Song Of Ice And Fire show.

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #006


The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #006 is here. Six is the loneliest number (after 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5) dontchanknow. In this our 6th, and sixth loneliest, show we’re asking lonely questions like: ‘If you had to choose a universe without either Ray Bradbury or Neil Gaiman, which would you pick?’ And ‘Which is the worst audiobook recording ever made?’ Pod-in to find out the answers to these and many more exciting questions that nobody asked us.

Topics discussed include:

StarShipSofa’s Aural Delights
, Paul Campbell, Michael Marshall Smith, The Seventeenth Kind, Estalvin’s Legacy, Rebels Of The Red Planet, Charles L. Fontenay, The 2nd SFFaudio Challenge, Parallel Worlds, The Graveyard Book, Neil Gaiman, The Jungle Book, American Gods, The Fix Online, Audiobook Fix, author read audiobooks, Harlan Ellison, Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Stephen King, Robert J. Sawyer, James Patrick Kelly, Good Omens, Terry Pratchett, Neverwhere, Gary Bakewell, if you had to pick…, Stardust, Douglas Adams, Roger Zelazny, The Long Dark Tea Time Of The Soul, radio drama, BBC Radio 4, BBC iplayer, Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer, The Supernaturalist, The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy [the Ivory Coast edition], The Spanish Prisoner, Strange Horizons, Shaun Farrell, From iTunes to the Bookshelves: The First Wave of Podcast Novelists, Podiobooks.com, Nathan Lowell, Quarter Share, Evo Terra, Pavlovian experience, Ed McBain, Donald E. Westlake, NPR, Driveway Moments,

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #003


The SFFaudio PodcastGenerally, this is our third podcast. Furthermore, it is a podcast of deep functionality. It’s universal really. Long story short, we talked about stuff. Join us in our secret society [book readers] where I (Jesse) say things like: Dune shot Science Fiction in the head.” and “Why I don’t like Science Fiction movies anymore.” and “You don’t name a king Augustus.” and “I hope the Earth explodes.”

In other words, the podcast’s length is commensurate with a function of your desire to listen to it.

Topics discussed include:

Crazy Dog Audio Theatre, The Zombies Of Dr. Krell, Roger Gregg, The Sonic Society, Radio Drama Revival, Whipping Star, Frank Herbert, Tantor Media, Dune, The Road To Dune, Children Of Dune, Brian Herbert, Kevin J. Anderson, MP3 to iPod Audiobook Converter, iTunes 8.0, zombies, StarShipSofa, SFSignal.com, Ian McDonald, The River Of Gods, Lawrence Block, Donald E. Westlake, Stephen King, John Scalzi, Old Man’s War, Anathem, Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash, BBC Audiobooks America, Hard Case Crime, Ed McBain, The Lies Of Locke Lamora, Scott Lynch, Dragon Page: Cover To Cover, Roger Zelazny, Locus, The Dead Man’s Brother, Robert McGinnis, Glen Orbik, Behind The Black Mask: Mystery Writers Revealed, Christa Faust, Money Shot, public libraries, secret societies, Podiobooks.com, Evo Terra, The Book Of The New Sun, Gene Wolfe, Grifter’s Game, Random House Audio, The Colorado Kid, Aural Noir, Sunshine, 28 Days Later, I, Robot, I Am Legend, 2001: A Space Odyssey, 2010: The Year We Make Contact, Fortress Draconis (a book with a king named Augustus), Robert Capa, John Searle, Brian Cox (physicist), IMDB.com

Posted by Jesse Willis