Recent Arrivals: Welcome To Bordertown edited by Holly Black and Ellen Kushner

SFFaudio Recent Arrivals

Just crossed the border, literally (it came in the back of a Subaru), here’s a Brilliance Audio audiobook collection that does almost everything right! First, check out the awesome cover art for Welcome To Bordertown:


BRILLIANCE AUDIO - Welcome To Bordertown edited by Holly Black and Ellen Kushner

Next, note the detailed track listings on the back:

BRILLIANCE AUDIO - Welcome To Bordertown edited by Holly Black and Ellen Kushner

So that’s a look at the outside, inside the discs themselves don’t detail their contents, which is bad, but not fatal (considering you’ve got the back of the audiobook to go by). As to the audio content itself, well I’m looking forward to picking up stories here and there as I research the authors more – that’s usually how I listen to collections these days.

This is the official description:

Bordertown: a city on the Border between the human world and the elfin realm. A place where neither magic nor technology can be counted on, where elf and human kids run away to find themselves. The Way from our world to the Border has been blocked for thirteen long years. . . . Now the Way is open once again — and Bordertown welcomes a new set of seekers and dreamers, misfits and makers, to taste life on the Border.

Here are thirteen interconnected stories, one graphic story, and eight poems — all new work by some of today’s best urban fantasy, fantasy, and slipstream writers

Now I’ve already checked out Neil Gaiman’s entry, which is a poem entitled The Song Of The Song. And I listened to Holly Black reading her own introductory essay. In it she credits the original Bordertown books as ‘creating the urban fantasy subgenre’. Ellen Kushner, Black’s co-editor, reads Terri Windling’s introductory essay, which details the background for the Bordertown series itself. It’s is described as a “Thieves’ World for teens.” Windling also talks about the phenomenon of shared worlds. Also, and this is pretty cool, there’s an additional editorial introduction written, and read, by Ellen Kushner (one that’s not found in the paperbook edition at all).

The only thing missing from this great audiobook edition is the story named Fair Trade by Sara Ryan and Dylan Meconis. But that’s probably because it’s actually a comic and so it would have been very hard to translate into audio (there are two panels of it HERE). And finally, here’s a promo video for the book:

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #096

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #096 – Scott and Jesse talk about recently arrived audiobooks as well as Y: The Last Man, James Tiptree Jr., Isaac Asimov, what author estates want and more!

Talked about on today’s show:
Kage Baker, Subterranean Press, Blackstone Audio, In The Garden Of Iden by Kage Baker, Captive Market by Philip K. Dick, Janan Raouf, Time For The Stars by Robert A. Heinlein, Barret Whitener, telepathy, Starman’s Quest by Robert Silverberg, For Us The Living: A Comedy Of Customs by Robert A. Heinlein, Malcolm Hillgartner, Heinlein’s first and last novel, Spider Robinson, Variable Star by Robert A. Heinlein and Spider Robinson, Job: A Comedy Of Justice, Macmillan Audio, Death Cloud: Sherlock Holmes The Legend Begins by Andrew Lane, Dan Wyman, “endorsed by the Conan Doyle estate” = who cares, Poul Anderson on Sherlock Holmes, Laird of Muck, disabled protagonists, The Lighthouse Land by Adrian McKinty, The Lighthouse War, MG (middle grade) vs. YA, Gerard Doyle, Christopher Paolini, The Gods Of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs, William Dufris, viscous plant men, does Deja Thoris lay eggs?, Dynamite Entertainment‘s Warlord Of Mars, Valentine Pontifex by Robert Silverberg, Majipoor Chronicles, Lord Valentine’s Castle, Stonefather by Orson Scott Card |READ OUR REVIEW|, Emily Janice Card, The Geek’s Guide To The Galaxy, The Lost Gate, The Last Airbender, R.L. Stine, Timescape by, Darkside by Tom Becker |READ OUR REVIEW|, Bolinda Audio, London, Neil Gaiman-esque, The Graveyard Book, Venus by Ben Bova |READ OUR REVIEW|, Fantastic Audio, Jupiter, Nova Science Now, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Europa, Ganymede, A Stainless Steel Rat Is Born, Brilliance Audio, The Elvenbane by Andre Norton and Mercedes Lackey, dragons, elves, Odalisque by Neal Stephenson, Alan Moore loves allusions, The League Of Extraordinary Gentleman, Snow Crash, The Diamond Age, Honor Harrington, Honor Among Enemies by David Weber, manticore, pirates!, what’s up with all the mix-and-match creatures in the Middle East?, On Blazing Wings by L. Ron Hubbard, mercenaries, SFsite.com often reviews the L. Ron Hubbard Stories From The Golden Age, the paperbooks problem, The Unremembered by Peter Orullian, Anne Perry, The Desert Of Souls by Howard Andrew Jones, 8th century, Baghdad, The Desert Of Souls by Howard Andrew Jones, the Fantasy Book Critic blog review, unpronounceable character names, J.R.R. Tolkien, Philip K. Dick was inspired by the Odyssey, Beyond Lies The Wub, Strange Eden, Scott didn’t like Y: The Last Man, Brian K. Vaughan, Gulliver’s Travels, the problem of transitory pop-culture references, The Tyrrany Of Talented Readers, Scalped, Bertrand Russell, Pride Of Baghdad, anthropomorphic fiction, James Tiptree Jr., Her Smoke Rose Up Forever, Masters Of Horror: The Screwfly Solution, Dove Audio, Isaac Asimov, author estates, Escape Pod #100, Nightfall, Tantor Media, Robots Of Dawn, Audible.com has plenty of Arthur C. Clarke, Dream Park by Larry Niven and Steve Barnes, mystery, Science Fiction, On Stranger Tides, Brain Wave, PaperbackSwap, Del Rey art in the ’70s and ’80s was awesome, Scott’s Picasa gallery of book covers, Tom Weiner, Jesse has a terrible memory, our Oath Of Fealty readalong, the Pirates Of The Caribbean films.

Posted by Jesse Willis

CBC Radion One’s Tapestry interviews: Anne Rice

SFFaudio Online Audio

CBC Radio One - Tapestry with Mary HynesCBC Radio One’s excellent Tapestry (a program about spirituality, faith and religion) talks to Anne Rice about her books and her religion. Anne Rice promises not to write about Vampires now that she’s rediscovered her faith. Host Mary Hynes knows how to do an interview, and this is a good one. Also on this particular show Wanita Bates travels to Iceland “where belief in elves is something of a national pastime.”

Have a listen |MP3| or subscribe to the podcast:

http://www.cbc.ca/podcasting/includes/tapestry.xml

Posted by Jesse Willis

P.S. CBC free Al!

LibriVox: The Shadows by George MacDonald

SFFaudio Online Audio

shadowsfin2.jpgThe Shadows
By George MacDonald; Read by Catherine Eastman
2 Zipped MP3s or Podcast – Approx. 1.5 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: November 27, 2007

Though no longer well known, his works (particularly his fairy tales and fantasy novels) have inspired admiration in such notables as W. H. Auden, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Madeleine L’Engle. The Shadows is one such fairy tale. The strange Shadows spend their existence casting themselves upon the walls and forming pictures of various sorts: mimicking evil actions of those who have done wrong in the hopes of causing their repentance, playing a comic dumb-show to inspire a playwright and dancing to inspire a musician, nudging a little girl to comfort her grandfather, and playing with a sick little boy as he waits for his mother to return home. For all that their forms are black, their hearts are of the whitest.

This fantasy for younger readers/listeners has a couple of things in its favor for adults other than just the historical interest in its author.  The reader here, Catherine Eastman, does an outstanding job and the story is quite imaginative. Highly recommended for younger listeners and not too bad for adults either.

Complete Audiobook [zip], individual MP3s here.

And here’s the podcast feed:

http://librivox.org/bookfeeds/the-shadows-by-george-macdonald.xml

Posted by Dave Tackett

Review of Armageddon’s Children by Terry Brooks

SFFaudio Review

Fantasy Audiobook - Armageddon’s Children by Terry BrooksArmageddon’s Children
By Terry Brooks; Read by Dick Hill
12 CDs – Approx. 14 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Published: 2006
ISBN: 1423322568
Themes: / Fantasy/ Post-Apocalyptic / Demons / Elves / Quest /

The first entry in Terry Brooks’ new Genesis of Shannara trilogy, Armageddon’s Children starts things off brilliantly. It is immediately engrossing, capturing the listener’s attention from the first minute clear through its cliffhanger ending. Set on an Earth where civilization has been mostly destroyed by war, diseases, and by demonic entities it is a world inhabited by mutants, demons, elves and humans, all hiding from an inevitable end. Post-apocalyptic fantasy is an odd sub-genre but Brooks pulls it off well, mostly combining the feel of post-apocalyptic science fiction with the trappings of fantasy.

Like many stories of this size, there is more than one main character. Armageddon’s Children has four: Logan Tom, a Knight of the Word is the foremost protagonist. Here has been given a mission to find a mysterious “gypsy morph” and lead it and a few human survivors to salvation. Logan, like most of the characters, must overcome self-doubt and accomplish his mission if humanity is to be saved. Another character, Angel Perez, another knight is sent with a tatterdemalion to find, and help save the elves. Hawk, a street urchin leads a small group of children. Kirisin, an Elf, is chosen to tend the Ellcrys, a sentient tree from the original Shannara series. The fates of all these characters are all intertwined and each must succeed in their respective quest if humanity and elfkind are to survive the looming destruction of the Earth.

Dick Hill, the narrator, is one of the better readers I’ve heard. Though the novel builds upon characters and ideas from earlier books in Brooks’ series, it stands on its own quite well. I haven’t heard or read many of them, yet I never felt as I were missing anything while I was listening to Armageddon’s Children. Indeed, the only complaint I have about the audiobook is a very minor one. This is a marketing problem. It is annoying that “Shannara” is not mentioned anywhere on the cover of the audiobook, despite the fact that it is the third largest word on the paperback version’s cover. Simply put I loved the audiobook of Armageddon’s Children and I can’t wait for the next in the series to be released.

Posted by David Tackett