The SFFaudio Podcast #748 – READALONG: Passport To Peril by Lawrence Block

The SFFaudio Podcast
Jesse, Maissa Bessada, and Will Emmons talk about Passport To Peril by Lawrence Block

Talked about on today’s show:
Anne Campbell Clark, 1967, internal stuff, guess what year this photo was taken, asking about JFK like he was still alive, Teddy Kennedy, the Irish connection, proud of him being president, very few people have read this, a book worthy of reading, noped out, pretty horrific, too sunk into it, a cocoon of singing and countryside, a lovely little book, not going anywhere and not upset about it, almost plotless, not all books need to have plots, spending time with Hobbits in Hobbiton, an old lady who likes to bicycle, red herrings, Will’s first Lawrence Block, the trip to the countryside, all of the lovely singing, I never shall marry as long as I live, really liked this book, who is the audience, Helen MacInnes readers, neither had Lawrence Block, spies with a little romance, romance with a little bit of spies, how smooth did this go down, easy drinking all the way through, it was a formula, the bad guy came around, there he is, why does that priest want her passport, maybe I’ve misjudged him, he’s back, women protagonists, usually a male, page by page, line by line, a little bit much, intoxicated, a 24 year old in 1967, the height of the sexual revolution, chaste for a folk-singer, they get snug and snuggle, she hides her nudity, not so folksy as one might imagine in real life, the scene with the IRA, pastiche-ish, that part never happened when Lawrence Block went to Ireland, a massive amount of violence, let’s go have a party, one of them gets shot and they keep having a party, movie-like, none of the dialogue felt clunky, what kind of folk-singing, Airplane!, lady with a guitar, inspirational songs vs. historical events, WWII essay, WWI, WWI’s influence on Ireland, the Irish Rising, home-rule in 1922, according to Star Trek [The Next Generation] and Mr. Data they’re going to reunite next year, all of us under the British rule, the overlords in Egypt, real bastards, it doesn’t translate across generations as well, gearing up, the ultimate McGuffin, because of the title, back to the passport, easy listening, P.J. Morgan, a lot of singing, male voices too, accents, a really good job, if I was P.J. Morgan and I had finished this book I would be superhappy with myself, a recipe, 191 pages, 5 hours 38 minutes, a short novel, a young lady who goes on a trip, chased across the countryside, a monster, a hero, delivering what women want, nice and smooth, the historical research, enthusiastic about Irish history, great fun, a double checkmark, creepy and scary quite late, when’s it gonna turn, grusome, burned to death, legs blown off, shoots somebody’s brains out, starts with a horrible murder, really violent, a nice guy from Philadelphia to leg cling to, a nice old lady who gets strangled off screen, the German guy with a family, what happened to the kids?, the casting room, spy training school, the woman with the red hair, in the ring?, a nice Londoner, leaving cards together, he’s playing a great great game, I need to tip my hand, when Ellen gets into the car with the priest, you’re just ahead of her, ahead of Jesse, I wish I knew my Irish history better, a really good promoter of stuff on his blog, the afterword, the blog post about Passport To Peril

In 1966 I was living at 16 Stratford Place, in New Brunswick, New Jersey. I’d spent a year in Wisconsin as an editor in the coin supply division of Western Printing, and just when it looked as though I might have a future in the corporate world, I realized it was the last thing I wanted. I’d been writing books all along, and I moved east and resumed writing full-time.

My agent, Henry Morrison, came to me with an assignment. Lancer Books, for whom I’d written a few books during Larry T. Shaw’s editorship, wanted to publish a romantic-espionage thriller in the tradition of Helen MacInnes. I hadn’t read anything by Ms. MacInnes, though I knew the byline; her books were published in hardcover, and frequently wound up on bestseller lists. Mine would be published as a paperback original, and bestseller status would be not even a fleeting dream.

I don’t know if I actually read any of the books which were to be my model. I probably skimmed a couple. I knew what was required—a clean sweet likable American girl as the heroine, a reasonably exotic foreign locale, and a couple of people who were not what they appeared to be, including an evident villain who turned out to be the unlikely hero and love interest, and a dashingly attractive good guy who turned out to be an absolute rotter.

I could do that.

And I knew just where to set it. Ireland. Where else?

I’d actually been to Ireland, which gave it a leg up on the rest of the world. In the fall of 1964, a few months after the move to Racine, my wife and I flew to Limerick and spent the better part of two weeks driving around Ireland. We had a day in Edinburgh and a few days in England, but Ireland got the bulk of our business.

Aside from brief forays into Canada and Mexico, this was my first time out of the States, and if it felt like an adventure, it felt even more like a homecoming. It’s clear to me that I spent at least one past life in Ireland. Among my earliest memories are ones of listening to Irish songs on the radio. (There was a girl who sang “Toora-loora-loora” on a local amateur show, and I’m pleased to report that she was the winner three weeks running.) I had a set of the Book of Knowledge, and from it I learned all the lyrics to Wearin’ o’ the Green.

When I had begun selling short fiction and was casting about for a book to write, I decided a novel of the Irish rebellion and civil war might be a good choice. But what did I know about it? I amassed an extensive library of English and Irish history, and read a surprising amount of it. And, around the time that my interest in numismatics was steering me toward the job in Wisconsin, I began collecting Irish coins and tokens and medals.
No question, then. I’d set the book in Ireland.

Ever since the trip, I’d been picking up records of Irish folk music. The Clancy Brothers, of course, but also a slew of Folkways albums on which various singers, some more gifted than others, collected songs of the 1798 Rising and other blighted periods in the land’s sad history. As G.K. Chesterton wrote:

For the great Gaels of Ireland
Are the men that God made mad,
For all their wars are merry,
And all their songs are sad.

Well, why not make my heroine a folksinger? Why not send her to Ireland to collect songs? There, of course, she could meet the wolf in sheep’s clothing, and the sheep in wolf’s clothing, and things would look decidedly dark for a while, but eventually the sun would burst through. I mean, it would have to, sooner or later. As far as we could make out, it was always either raining or about to rain in Ireland, but maybe I could cheat and have a little sunshine toward the end.

I went to New York to write the book. Don Westlake had sublet a studio apartment on West 24th Street in Chelsea; he’d lived there briefly, during a marital rough spot, and kept it as a sometimes office until the lease was up. I moved in, and brought home Passport to Peril ten days later. I don’t know if the title was mine, though I rather think it was. I know the pen name was mine, and I know that forty-five years later nobody else on earth knew it.

Henry knew back then, but I’m sure he’s long since forgotten. My first wife would have known, but I don’t think she ever read the book, and would be surprised if she recalls anything about it. Irwin Stein at Lancer would have known, but would have had no reason to remember. Among the book-collecting fraternity, no one had a clue. This book, and Fidel Castro Assassinated!, are the two works of mine that somehow escaped detection. The latter, written under the name Lee Duncan, was recently reprinted as Killing Castro by Hard Case Crime, and has since become available as an OpenRoad eBook. Passport to Peril now makes its first post-Lancer appearance as an e-book, and I can only hope you’ve enjoyed it.

I read it myself recently to ready it for publication, and I was surprised to find that I liked it. Remember what Yeats wrote?

Romantic Ireland’s dead and gone,
It’s with O’Leary in the grave. . .

True too of the Ireland of the 1960s. It was a curious pleasure to revisit the time and place, if in my own work.

the exact same thing, good at remembering how things happened in the 60s, very Lawrence Blocky, passionate about foreign revolutions, a CIA plot to kill Castro, a cheque to the farmer with the dead sheep, what ever revolution is happning in that country, the Evan Tanner series, comedic and silly, almost perfect for what its doing, broader, like James Bond, cartoonish, fun but silly, a Korean war veteran, shrapnel in his head gives him a superpower, The Thief Who Couldn’t Sleep, why readers would like a book like this, I become a supergenius, whatever republic that wants freedom from colonialism, participating in their revolutions, joke book, The Canceled Czech, light and fluffy, Tanner On Ice, literally frozen, a participant in the ideas the book he is producing, numismatics, a book on racewalking, walk faster than other people, the Hit Man/Hit List series, cozy, there’s a guy in Mexico who needs to be shot, I like Mexico, observations in a restaurant, really into stamp collecting, an action scene, whatever subject he turns his attention to becomes a very very readable book, can you write a book about assassinating Castro?, technically required to do this, Will material?, not-enough enthusiasm, emphasis and underlining and exclamation marks, Classic Crime Library number 15, how quiet it has been resting, Lawrence Block took control of his publishing, he’s the one, making you buy his stuff, around an participating in his estate, incredible, he’s so good, Westlake through Block, turns out its a real book, Westlake’s highs are higher but Block’s more consistent, a lady on vacation, why that guy slipped, an excuse to have her in peril, an excuse to have a lady chased by spies, maybe she will marry, he was trying to be caught, no one knew, there’s a tip off, out of genre for most of the people who read Lawrence Block, she goes to a movie, something drums, “A Sound Of Distant Drums”, a calling card, or a signature, somebody coming out of a movie theater, that’s cool, his Burglar series, The Burglar Who Thought He Was Bogart, The Burglar Who Painted Like Mondrian, topic books, exploring some little niche, standup comedians bits they connect together, researching and polishing ideas, Burglars Can’t Be Choosers, the girlfriend is the murderer, settles into a formula, really really fun, passes the time, go have a sandwich, oh yeah one of these, that paperback book industry is where he really lives, take a paperback and enjoy the weekend, a song saved her life, why I like folksinging now, Kumbaya, historical information, how to be, in America 2, here 12, makes you want to drink stout, listen to folk music, the festival circuit, the premise of this book, the state department in real life is evil, spread American culture, money spent on evil not on good, cultural activities, Eastern block, throw money at a problem, Lawrence Block needed to have an excuse, her family’s all killed off, one and done, they’re happy and their Irish now, both green, 2 cigarettes, more cigarettes, they stopped to buy more cigarettes, the new taste, so much smoking, they don’t need food they’re thin and young, dates the book, you could write this book, their sten guns would be something else, Berlin, Ukraine or something, delightful little book, make you say “I’d like some stout.”, Guinness, a wish fulfillment fantasy romance, read the back cover, little tipsy here and there, poignant moments, the songs, the stories, a Brothers Grimm thing, went out to all the pubs, music and stories are the same, all personal histories, probably wrong, music that’s close to the people, in the process of collecting these folk songs there’s some exploitation, selling a record, who’s going to see the proceeds of that record, what is the purpose of this?, to commoditization it?, spread it?, share it?, Stan Rogers, Barrett’s Privateers, east coast Nova Scotia Irish kitchen, a fun song, it has swearing a letter of marque, Sherbrooke, god damn them all, Halifax, the staggers and jags, such a good singer, sea shanty folk song, Montego Bay, sailing terms, incapable of catching a slow moving ship, smashed like a bowl of eggs, both me legs, in my 23rd year, six whole years, War of 1812, while you’re paying attention, similar to The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner, a homeless beggar on a pier, the big Coleridge poem, the same story as Annabelle Lee, grateful and thankful, what has Will been doing?, back into politics, a tenant union, a communist caucus in the DSA, COVID last months, 2 and a half weeks, testing positive, not very sick, flu-like symptoms, paxlovid, our medicines don’t protect us or help us, that’s crazy, a lot of cat action happening, a core group of nine cats, stranger cats, a high number of a cats, all feral, the boys that aren’t fixed are both named Brandon, one darker than the other, let’s go Brandon, telling the Brandons apart, laser eyes, that’s the dark Brandon, smaller feet, chipmunk feet, Brooklyn Dad Defiant, a very 90s name that’s a 2020s name, Owen with Gs, beg to come inside, Tobias, to bite toes, a bias towards toes, a negotiation, mother and grandmother of them all, a mean old cat, a sour disposition, the dog will let her, irritable, you can just come and rub up on my dog, mean old girls, on the roof some, Maissa’s fascinating life, editing Ace Galaksi, social media stuff, blogs and newsletters, let’s do an internal podcast, a link on the dl, what is Maissa’s job?, lots of divisions, pr, edit videos, write and produce pr things, listen to the podcast, if I need to know, 15 minutes at most, once a month, reediting a novel for 20 years, middle school, rewrite a billion time, I got out my library card…, regarding that game [chronophoto], everybody’s wearing fucking masks, anytime after 1950, AOC, 2018, an I voted sticker, eerily obvious what year it is, figure out what year that was, talking about Kennedy being president but not talking about Kennedy being assassinated, in county Cork, is the book dated?, no, it’s a period piece, au courant, everybody’s playing with their iPhone 6, bullying each other, only play with a group, a couple repeats, playing PUBG, a faster version of the game, early January, online vs. in person, got rid of some old computers, that to lean on, Scott does the editing for Reading, Short And Deep, 4-6 hours per day, 8 hour days are horrible, and the show’s over, 10 hours per day, send me a secret signal, Burn Notice, a comiccon, Battlestar Galactica, Archer, a throwback, Pulpcovers/Alex, the last of an earlier era of television, problem of the week, and a weak overriding plot every season, he used to be spy, just a premise for the show, exotic locale, it has a car, 80s, A-Team van, Kitt from Knight Rider, Dukes Of Hazzard, the car is the star of the show, an actor based show, Gabrielle Anwar, an IRA terrorist, Jeffrey Donovan, Bruce Campbell is the sidekick, the Evil Dead series, Sharon Gless, Cagney & Lacey, flip phones, 2005-2011 show, a fine show, a comic book, a sidekick on Xena, western shows, The Adventures Of Brisco County Jr., short lived Fox shows, Zorro style, Jack Of All Trades, what you can do while you’re at work, a half hour syndicated action comedy, 1801, East Indies, a swordfighting, masks, Napoleon Bonaparte is character, Mr. Charismatic on screen, bicker in fun ways, a good fun show, Spider-Man villains, Bubba Ho-Tep (2002), Elvis and JFK, it should be an amazing movie, a little long in the tooth, the cylon lady, Lucy Lawless, you see those people together, the Spartacus tv series, Blood And Sand, 300 (2006), the acting and the dynamics, a slave morality show, diaries?, slave folk heroes, Kirk Douglas, what would it mean to be a slave, having sex with the slaves, a great villainess, New Zealanders, Evan agrees, a slave rebellion, the servile war, amazing history, super-compelling on-screen performances, green screen, practical sets, thinking of it as a play, a tool to get stuff done, laidoff, Vikings was a better show, blood eagle, why you don’t want piss the vikings off, doesn’t overstay its welcome, a maori gladiator, sticking to the facts is fascinating, what is it like to be a celebrity slave, I am Spartacus, a consciousness raising movie, also very sexy, they’re sexy too, regretful but should be done, killing the masters, killed in the end, sexy jumping naked slaves, emotional resonance, very underrated show, 39 episodes, 2013, All In The Family, Happy Days, about as substantial, a monologue about Riverdale, too soap opera, just soap opera enough, Twin Peaks, the original, Deep Space Nine, a very resonant show, better is substantial ways, Miles got trapped in the mine for 20 years, extreme amounts of trauma, poor Miles O’Brien, his wife doesn’t love him, his kid doesn’t care about him, the writers were picking on him, Canadian?, Irish movies, the Canadian film industry, Black Summer, a Netflix show, Calgary, that explains it, the old zombie trope, you are the camera, you don’t know why, you follow that person for a while, this is our main character, nope, they’re killed, weird compared to regular television, Z Nation, an art film, the Asylum, notorious for making cheapo rip off movies, a company designed to make money, the coattails of Hollwood, Sharknado, very surprising, going back all the way, April 2019, not a show like Star Trek Discovery, storytelling techniques that have lain follow, basically praise, the endless sprawling suburbs of Calgary, Alberta, The Crazies (1973), worthy of attention, only one trick: surprise!, the trick works a lot, Stephen King’s The Shining, The Picture In The House by H.P. Lovecraft and Pigeons From Hell by Robert E. Howard, White House-style, axed by ghosts of slavery, based on a black person’s story told to him, a traditional slave folktale, pretty scary, a TV adaptation, anti-mystery box show, sparse in dialogue, what the fuck is going on and why am I so scared, The Extraordinary Attorney Woo, sweet and innocent, childlike, well packaged, young and more than middle aged, a broad range of interests, I think you want it to be great, sweet and fun, Korean film and television industry, clips of this autistic lady, The Admiral: Roaring Currents (2013), Yi Sun-Shin, Korean George Washington, defeated Japan, 12 Korean ships vs. 333 Japanese ships, a slog, historical epics, great horror movies, The Host (2006), the Americans pollute the Han river, evil tank juice, a Godzilla movie, lighter than Train To Busan (2016), kaiju, the worst Korean accent ever, A Man Called Ove (2015), enforcing block association rules, boisterous new neighbors, spends half the movie trying to kill himself, when a movie is not so good, theatering?, Avatar 2, beautiful and too long and mostly a setup for the next one, every crew has a crazyass white boy, very satisfying to see giant arrows go through people, a very clunky writer, repeated himself, Titanic (1997) has gravitas, a big weighty movie, Avatar 3 The Way Of The Rocks, the four elements, exhausted its idea, the na’vi won, Dances With Wolves in space, free of his bad body, a trans story, the transgender kid episode of The Orville, too Star Warsy, special effects heavy, the other way around, show the gender surgery working, trying to sell it on an alien, Ezri vs. Jadzia Dax, a funny situation, Macklin?, they’re both boys, hilarious, like Star Trek but funny, less funny, less good, very wrong of them, Obi-Won was horrible, Andor is not shit, Stalin robbing a bank, a heist show, Diego Luna, Star Wars: Rogue One, many boffins died for this thumbdrive, slow paced, beautifully framed, casting is pretty good, Star Wars writing has been shit, hang out with some labourers, smart but evil, political aspect, Blesson Yates, Imani Pullum [playing Topa], IMDB is getting shitty, a fill-in show, The Venom Business by Michael Crichton, Nazis on the Moon, Evan Lampe started a podcast series reading through everything Heinlein wrote, talked him into it, and maybe Mark Twain, Pirate Enlightenment, Or The Real Libertalia by David Graber, he’s been posthumous for a while, I’m posthumousing right now, autistic style take, all the same, his third posthumous book, “enlightenment, liberty, socialism all the same thing”, hey that’s us!, a radical social experiment, The Hopkins Manuscript by R.C. Sherriff, The Crawlers by Philip K. Dick, crawling abortions being run over by trucks, pretty great story, The Pre-Persons, a weird guy, an interview with Ray Faraday Nelson’s kid, David Agranoff, Philip K. Dick: babysitter, Philip K. Dick shows a 7-year old his derringer, why you have a derringer?, what are you thinking?, this is America, man, too American, we just got problem, do something different in this country, Four-Day Planet by H. Beam Piper, Poul Anderson sword and sandal, Francis Stevens is always interesting, dystopia in Philadelphia, The Heads Of Cerberus, a weird lady, what the fancy people do, Unseen-Unfeared, a few things missing, first published in 1904, Jean Veil, People’s Favorite Magazine, a low rent Italian restaurant, he sells love charms, not tempting, a review by E.F. Bleiler, guy breaks into a house, fights with best friend, a knock at the door, the safe was open, very convoluted, a phial with a stopper with the heads of Cerberus, Dante’s gate, no diamonds in here, what did you do with my cousin, alternate 2018, weird dystopia, no names, just numbers, Mr. Handsome gets a municipal job, a fascist state?, goes in the pit, head of the music department, it’s like the Hugo awards, also stirred up the ashes, seat of her pants, spinning up ideas, opposite of well put together, ideas like rockets going off, Science Fiction The Early Years, Guide To Supernatural Fiction, emdash, 729 pages, a special photographic filter, the soul of a recent suicide, only like an hour, how hard is it to do 47 minutes, we had a good chat, Evan’s been sick, isn’t Paul always at a convention?, socialize, Paul is lonely Libra, Jesse’s just a cancer on society, someplace, pulpcon, money, hassle at the borders, no excuses, lining up for celebrities, Pavel Chekov’s signature, the conversations at the panels are surficial, Pulpfest, 2016, intervening years, a long drive, pulps were more expensive, pandemic prices, Planet Stories for $20, hold it in your hand, oooh look at that ooh!, stay up all night talking to people, if Cirsova were in local stores, Jesse doesn’t want to support Amazon, good used bookstores, lesbian couples are in it for the long haul, a trope almost, they’re bookish, Little Sisters, super-prudes, super-evil, a place of prominence, rent is low somewhere, small town Alberta, a town full of Mormons, an amazing town, Cardston, Alberta, Justice League building, Fortress of Solitude, something out of Ayn Rand, it looks like a bank, cost of living, inflation, $850 for a 3 bedroom and big yard, what does that get you?, giant assessments, working online, the fever has not yet broken on covid, an excuse to fuck everybody and line pockets, definitively its a wash, almost none of the positives are with spreading the disease around, wrecked the industry for in-person tutoring, in person classrooms, kids don’t learn very well online, Paul’s masked up at his convention, the vaccines don’t work for almost any of the people getting them, let’s go back to business as usual, tele-judge, on trial with the judge not in the room, fixed camera, ai shit, a program that you run, that changes where your eyes are focused to make it look at the camera, creepy and interesting, simulated real-life but also fake, no modesty at all, Hawaiian Mormon templeing, nice people, just in this life, Brandon Sanderson, Orson Scott Card is a black name, church homophobia, he’s following his church beliefs, this is the doctrine of my church, and I contribute money to prevent people from getting married, religious objections vs. non-religious objections to abortion, Scott is quite nuanced, say things in a polite way, the same claim about the papists, pushing babies into wombs, bio-ethicists say it is okay to use brain dead women’s bodies, clickbait shit, frustrating fun game, coffee, I can still have coffee, too shaky, three cups max, a catfood shortage, egg pricing, incompetence of a cat named Brandon, personally responsible for inflation, not solving problems, price controls, stick it to the egg industry, milk control board, 59% increase in egg prices, realer food, no-corn in Canadian pop, some breads without soy, Italy has basically real food, pink slime, slight advantages to higher food prices, wrangle some cats, try to find cat food, inexpensive kibble, possums, raccoons.

Passport To Peril by Lawrence Block

Passport To Peril by Lawrence Block (back)

Passport To Peril by Lawrence Block - AUDIOBOOK

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The SFFaudio Podcast #746 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Shadows In Zamboula by Robert E. Howard


The SFFaudio Podcast #746 – Shadows In Zamboula by Robert E. Howard – read by Mark Nelson for LibriVox. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the story (1 hour, 26 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants include Jesse, Paul Weimer, Connor Kaye, Alex, and Cora Buhlert

Talked about on today’s show:
Weird Tales, November 1935, The Man-Eaters Of Zamboula, a better title?, conforms to the Weird Tales title aesthetic, the problem, a second meaning, shadows is nebulous, cannibals, all in one night, just before dusk, the evening, a little sleep, a naked lady, a little adventure, buys a horse, leaves town, the magic ring, a roomful of gold, it makes a person irresistible to the opposite sex, lesbians are acknowledged, a gay subtext in one scene, the strangulation, Baal-Ptor, any temple wench, devil dick, the Hannuman temple, a penis, a strangle-off, his boss calls him that, that’s pretty gay, a great scene, I started with babies, and he dies, pro-cannibal, who is put in what position and why, Mark Nelson, Aram Baksh, Ralph Bakshi?, a lot of mistakes in various people’s analysis, he’s not bearded in Savage Sword, the Ablaze, he’s a bum, they’re companions, Bedouin, a middle eastern , they’re on a team, stole a horse from the satrap, don’t stay there, hookah bar, gambling den, the sword maker’s bazaar, yelp reviews, unchronicled adventures, random desert tribes, the kind of thing he tends to do, Doctor Who, for plot purposes, what city it was supposed to be, Constantinople, the western edge of Turan, Mosul, Palmyra, the comic version, Conan recognized her from the start, assumptions, 2nd to last Conan stories, he knows what’s up, full of things that should trigger people and alleviate those things, supple warriors, hawk-faces, the lords of Zamboula, ancient glories, over reading much, glowering about ancient glories, flaunting their myriad colours, loving, towers and minarets, an infodump we need to be surprised lady, judging, smote is a negative, they’ll think he’s a wizard and eat Paul, delighted as all heck, but it might stink, open sewers, third world places, Kathmandu and Nepal, loud, the Ottoman Empire, multiculturalism, hybrids and mongrels, Cross Plains, Texas, modern day Lebanon, influenced the crusader stories, cities are described negatively, civilization is corrupt, what’s cool about this story, everybody’s got their angle, subsidize sales by selling the stuff of his guests, Robert Bloch, an H.H. Holmes story, Solomon Kane, A Rattle Of Bones, The Inn In The Spessart aka The Spessart Inn by Wilhelm Hauff, join our gang or we’ll kill you, film adaptation, how they got put into that position, meat as part of their religion, let out at night like cats, steal from their masters, as they should, our heroine, they’re too valuable, they’re our property, Zamboula is dependent on their slaves, let them eat travelers and street people, Nefertari, secure her position, what happened and her story, she makes it up on the spot, the Ablaze adaptation, literally naked, her hair is covering stuff, a standard trope, the R-rated, a loin cloth, we never see a nipple, important to understand, of course we want titillation, her clothes would giver her away, silken robe, a slave who’s mute, she’s just lied to that guy, you can trust him he’s not a man-eater, Aram Baksh gets his tongue cut off, don’t eat me!, the moral, the better put together this story is, a murder mystery, set piece scenes, a conan pastiche person, The Curse Of The Monolith just rips off that hole idea, magnetic table, the Virgin Conan The Barbarian computer game, a worldwide phone company, a DOS game, a bridal sword, live out the fantasy, Virgin Bride, a bug, what we see in the Conan movie, what’s in the comics, somebody did some research, you’d lose your sword, slip that ring off the finger, he doesn’t tell us until the end, very well put together, looking for something, Conan has already stolen it, worldbuilding and setting, oh yeah that’s right, back to Paul in a flash, an article, Charles R. Saunders, quibbles, all of Sword And Sorcery, as a black person, fascinated by Africa, boxing fans, a bad website, Howard vs. Lovecraft and Clark Asthon Smith, Black Gate, Bob Byrne, Steven H. Silver, why Man Eaters Of Zamboula is the best of all time, the most quintessential, is that defensible?, the most Conan of the Conan stories, best ever written, best story of all time, compelling points here and there, part of a contest they’re having, when you’re arguing for something like that, worse stories by Robert E. Howard, worried about getting this one, a terrific story, Vale Of Lost Women, with some issues, a higher high within it, this isn’t even close, Red Nails, Queen Of The Black Coast, what happens, become more refined, word choices, a mighty theme, the theme in here is strong, what you need to do in life is be the smartest man in the room and have strong hands, offering sex, this story undercuts our expectations and goes away with a bag of cash, getting tired of writing Conan, an amazing finish, really interesting thesis in the center, laser beams, magnets, electrical magnets, the magic in here, science, superscience, radium gems, the priest is all gadgets, toned down, science or magic, cannibal slaves, the colours are more muted than other Conan stories, the setting, he gambled it away, he knew what he was doing, brawn, smarts and skill, a complete Conan, a stupid brute, play dumb, subvert your expectations, fresh to civilization, a Conan who’s seen some things, wily Conan, miles under his belt, confident enough in himself, professional strangler, an intense scene, Conan the conartist, The Jewels Of Gwahlur, Pelishtim, the mercenaries that guard the city, Nefertari, Nefartinti, Stygian, worships Set, the monkey god, on the cover of Savage Sword, clothes on and blonde, the scary monkey god, his representative, his boss,lusting after our girl, Yog, the Darfari slave god, Crom, Erlik, competing ideologies, some to swear with, strong demands, promote human happiness, sacrifices, go to the casino and lose all your cash, every man the strengths of his hands, a god for atheists, cosmicism without reference to the cosmic, prayer doesn’t make any sense, what would Evan say?, what the slaves are thinking, it fuckin sucks to be a slave but we get to have a religion, foreign bastards who are enslaving us, I’m the guy who sells you bodies to eat, they want to revolt, leave the citizens away, their shields on their back, the most powerful woman in the city, Hanuman’s temple, the heart of the story, marble walls, there’s no gate, each building has its own wall, horns, an Agatha Christie sort of scene, barbarian senses, a high perception tense, the reason he has such good hand sensing is because he’s a meat-eater, not a human meat eater, to get revenge, a man-eater too, a secret door, a giant hand, little maze, our guy sitting on a divan, back and forth allusions, The Odyssey, the guest host relationship, a really big theme, a bad relationship with the guest or the host, when they get broken bad things happen, the host comes home, Circe’s island, turn my men not into pigs, a reinforcement of this value system, how to be in a person’s space, that’s what we have here, taken by many different owners, a rival, this door is barred from the inside, climb over the wall, that pit, the slaves can leave the city, they can’t leave, they’ll die, imagine this: and we do, sexual stuff, dragon fight, stuck in somebody else’s feud, more adventures, a central core, he’s really saying something here, who else can do that with this material?, role playing things, Stygian origins, Turan, nightstalking Darfari cannibals, covetously eyes, intrigue and adventure, compared to Shadizar the Wicked, a spider god at the center of it, John Milius stole from every story, he stole from the best, Set’s temple, springing up in all the cities nearby, a power struggle, I salute you, I got a job for you, go get my daughter, snake vs. elephant, sneak into the temple, the satrap is going to be happy, rage induced coma, captain of the guard, its a job, she dosed him, she’s bad, everybody here is bad, a woman naked in the city, slightly deceiving, I’m sorry I lied to you, Conan doesn’t react, Conan doesn’t ever lie, not being chivalrous, nobody has any honour, he saves her from the cannibals, they were stealing her, if they ate the mistress, supplant the satrap, ruled by his mistress, went wild and tore her clothes off, street bum prophesying doom, his hand on Conan’s arm, speaking to him as a brother, a mini-version of the whole piece, his instinct for story is better than almost anybody, writing for a particular market, the chapters and the headings and the nude scene, the scenes that he has to have, the girl threatened by a magician, a similar scene, this ancient mummy, People Of The Black Circle, pretending to be a statue, clothes swap, a whipping scene or something, if he doesn’t get the cover he doesn’t get the bonus, magic, not in The Hour Of The Dragon, all the cities have wizards, John Dee scrying on his mirror, they fucked up, resurrection is a bad plan, that’s how Christianity started, self-ressurection, Jewel Of Seven Stars by Bram Stoker, a pretty damn good story, the Ablaze adaptation, naked the whole story, the art, black god, wonderfully portrayed, undialogued pages, Æon Flux, she looked off the whole book, to actually depict it, naked as the day she was born, a person naked in an unwalled city, at the end, she drops her lover off, is it because every piece of clothing would give away who she is?, giving Margaret Brundage a chance, the cover with the cobras, not unusual for her, how she normally dresses, that very pale skin, on a pirate ship topless, pale is beauty, the guy grew up in Texas, not a wise idea, shock the other guys by flashing them, she’s acting as a goddess, the colour distinction, the palest of pale skins with black hair, Cora is trying to make it make sense, a magic toe ring, breast bobbing, at night, hide from the Pelishtim, when we see the guy’s eyes, contrast with Conan, gets a feel, resisting eating her, playing off each other, lascivious men, the priest wants her to be his, a friend who says look bud, a man who drinks to much is crazy, tearing her clothes off, minutes ago, dragged away from his own bed, not the first time it happens to him, Black Colossus too, a nice theme, as is the reader, puts off his vengeance, a side story, get your priorities straight, save the boyfriend, kill this priest, her motivation is no one can no, I need an outsider, Vera Cruz (1954), Burt Lancaster at his hottest, don’t do that movie with Burt Lancaster, Gary Cooper, he’ll blow you off the screen, old cracked faced men in westerns, way more charismatic, the main attraction, the plot is kinda similar, mercenaries from the American Civil War, working for Emperor of Mexico, an Austrian guy, see each other at this dance, a beef with a high mucky-muck, the glove, you’re not even important, give each other the chin nod, the Kirk and Bones gif, Denise Darcel, Sara Montiel, cowboys not European royalty, why westerns are really cool, stole a horse, shooting each other in the streets, the Winnetou stories, River Of No Return (1954), Duel In The Sun (1946), The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), meta-westerns, a baby across the desert, when is Connor gonna do Howard’s western stories?, how many westerns there were, Steve Costigans, Breckenridge Elkins, his bread and butter, better and more promptly, Action Stories, Fight Stories, a bigger market, niche, how many western TV shows, a legacy, leftovers, westerns now, spaghetti westerns, silent westerns, Western Von Gestern, what Alex Baldwin tried to do, the way TV was supposed to look, westerns or war movies, all the men were old, pulp westerns, Zane Grey novels, short stories from the pulps, something you have to come to appreciate, a set of tropes, its a genre, values that are different, follow the law, follow orders, soccer match on Christmas, what happened to the guys who did it?, war movies serve a purpose, westerns are bottom up, American mythology, do they study SF at university now?, do they study westerns?, Astounding is the training for our engineers, leave town, go to the west, a national mythology, looking backwards, Clint Eastwood, looking at the future, a generation after the west was closed out, the kids or the grandkids of the generation being portrayed, they don’t study romances at university, specialized academics, finding a science fiction class was pretty hard, the Women’s Studies, looking down because it is bottom up, and some women, Range Romances, one of the longest running pulps, Railroad Stories, railroad fiction, you want a union? fuck you, good pay, high tech, like being a truck driver, dangerous, long hours, no time off, bad healthcare, Germany vs. Australia, considered a good job, a secure job, capitalism hasn’t taken over Germany completely, Space Viking by H. Beam Piper, four weeks in a row, people have weird desires, women, man, The Venom Business by Michael Crichton, Rocket Ship Galileo by Robert A. Heinlein, Unseen-Unfeared by Francis Stevens, The Hopkins Manuscript, Alec Nevala-Lee, The Crawlers by Philip K. Dick, The Golden Slave by Poul Anderson, off to farmville, Skull Face, a Steve Harrison story Names In The Black Book, Coming Attraction by Fritz Leiber, never been done before, don’t waste Connor, on Conan duty or Robert E. Howard duty, The Thing On The Roof, a cool description, hear the nipples on the roof, Robert E. Howard doing H.P. Lovecraft, “Hooves In The Night”, Unaussprechlichen Kulten, German speakers, a Justin Joffrey poem, August Derleth, wonky, Canadian public domain, M.S. Corley art, comic book adaptation, a Marvel Chillers version, weird tales sort of material, you get hooked, Howard via Conan, gonna make you a Nazi, Lancer paperbacks, really good, pastiche, boxers who go sailing, Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, based on publication date and renewal, nothing to do with death, Robert Silverberg, Harlan Ellison, Condé Nast, work for hire, hero pulps, written under house names, Howard horror, Pigeons From Hell, Old Garfield’s Heart, Steve Costigan, Francis X. Gordon, a useful resource, Mark Finn, the far future, The Devil’s Elixir by E.T.A. Hoffmann, an early robot story, The Sandman, ignore the interesting good for the dull, unsuitable for teenagers, 12 hours 24 minutes, four months, E.T.A. Hoffmann and Edgar Allan Poe, doppelgangers, this story is that story minus all the long parts, The Oval Portrait, a lot of overlap, Poe inspired The Student Of Prague (1913), retreat on the shore of Lake Geneva, Bohemian ghost stories, German romanticism and gothic literature, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, The Influence Of E.T.A Hoffmann On Edgar Allan Poe, Connor is sick, regular sick, Hard Case Crime, epub or mobi or PDF, Google Books, look at screens all day long, screens less, had you not known a pirate…, 3kb, a remainder bookstore, ebook device technology, eink colour is not rich, snow?, vasculitis, autobahn, bahn means train.

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The SFFaudio Podcast #739 – READALONG: Grave Descend by Michael Crichton

Jesse and Paul Weimer talk about Grave Descend by Michael Crichton.

Talked about on today’s show:
1970, John Lange, a Hard Case Crime, very short book, way too short, is this over, 3 hours 39 minutes, shouldabin longer, where’s the there there?, shortest book?, these days, based on the length, incredibly big font, pump up the point size, thin paper, print closer to the margins, The Postman Always Rings Twice, 159 pages, definitely a novel, tor wouldn’t put it out, as a paperbook, Finna by Nino Cipri, Ace Doubles, two crappy covers, dive into this book, Macgregor, Scottish engineer type, paradise, Jamaica, Ian Fleming, espionage, the best part of the book, the boat still in the water, this is going to be a good book, the high point, facile, his employers, a reveal, setup to take a fall, trouble with the authorities, the flyover, he tries to break it, I want more money, testing them, as you know here it is, slidething, The Prisoner, as well you know, this is all a con, way to easily, if it was a longer book, the weakest of the John Lange books so far, handling of character’s thoughts, a very naturally gifted writer, so smooth and clear, weakness caused by being a bit rushed, starts off amazingly, good slick solid, Jesse’s ideas were more interesting, a patsy, a political assassination, just money, diamonds, a much better novel, Dancing Aztecs, a weak Westlake, it’s a television show, one episode, the pilot episode, sidekicks, girlfriend, motorcycle, the island, a setup for a television series, 48 hours to clear things up, To Catch A Thief, 48 Hours, a Scottish name, Beatrix Potter, Peter Rabbit, Mrs. Rabbit, not to go into Mr. Macgregor’s garden, eating vegetables, literally looks like God, he tries to kill Peter, hiding in a bush naked and afraid, the island of Jamaica in Macgregor’s garden, James Macgregor, a familiar plot, Thunderball by Ian Fleming, two movies, Sean Conner was in both, the Bahamas, the plot, a health resort, an Italian NATO pilot defected with essentially a Vulcan bomber, Falkland Islands, two nukes, Bond’s job is to find the plane and get the bombs back, SPECTRE, a girl, hires an airplane, where the airplane went down, exactly the same story, instead of nuke’s its diamonds, Ocho Rios, Ian Fleming Airport, doing James bond, if you didn’t know, The Venom Business, something to do with snakes, reptile stuff, snake stuff, ocelot stuff, a second ocelot, nasty, Archer, a rich person with an ocelot, whoever was writing Archer, ocelot action and ocelot talk, so strange, a hitchhike ride, you can’t trust this lady, going along with it, deeper and deeper, playing with our expectations, saw that coming, waste the ocelot lady, very lean, a very Ian Fleming move, an alligator farm, a guy with a hat that can chop people’s heads off, not a science fiction gimmick, more like The Prisoner, Season Of Skulls by Charles Stross, a Dreamlands sort of space, Rover is a shoggoth, a book that speaks to Paul, sorcerers instead of spies, I am really in trouble, he’s good, a full novel, much longer than this, too easily, ticking things off, Inside Man (2006), Diamonds Are Forever, the setup is incredible, the payoff is fine, ticking time bomb, the diving, great stuff in there, twists, surprises, not warranted, a loosey goosey, diamonds not so interesting, the ending, open up a dive shop/hotel, not a TV series anymore, diver solves problems, Clive Cussler, Atlantis, Travis McGee series, John D. MacDonald, books of this length and of this period, the title, this Samuel Johnson guy, explainable entirely by Michael Crichton, Samuel Johnson was not a medical doctor, more like Doctor Who doctor, his dictionary, Robbie Coletrain as Samuel Johnson, Blackadder, a useful book, most people didn’t know, this poem, the police captain, Crichton’s obsession with Johnson lead him to name a character, comdended to hope, sudden blast, see Levet to the grave descend, of every friendless name the friend

On the Death of Dr. Robert Levet
By Samuel Johnson
Condemned to Hope’s delusive mine,
As on we toil from day to day,
By sudden blasts, or slow decline,
Our social comforts drop away.

Well tried through many a varying year,
See Levet to the grave descend;
Officious, innocent, sincere,
Of every friendless name the friend.

Yet still he fills Affection’s eye,
Obscurely wise, and coarsely kind;
Nor, lettered Arrogance, deny
Thy praise to merit unrefined.

When fainting Nature called for aid,
And hovering Death prepared the blow,
His vigorous remedy displayed
The power of art without the show.

In Misery’s darkest cavern known,
His useful care was ever nigh,
Where hopeless Anguish poured his groan,
And lonely Want retired to die.

No summons mocked by chill delay,
No petty gain disdained by pride,
The modest wants of every day
The toil of every day supplied.

His virtues walked their narrow round,
Nor made a pause, nor left a void;
And sure the Eternal Master found
The single talent well employed.

The busy day, the peaceful night,
Unfelt, uncounted, glided by;
His frame was firm, his powers were bright,
Though now his eightieth year was nigh.

Then with no throbbing fiery pain,
No cold gradations of decay,
Death broke at once the vital chain,
And freed his soul the nearest way.

a waiter, his personal waiter, a good listener, case consultations, a medical practitioner for the poor, a Yorkshireman working in France, this guy is amazing, a waitress listening to customers in a restaurant, a reputation among the lower classes, plans to send him to medical school, living in his house for decades, a strange relationship, a taciturn person, insightful and very humane, coarsely kind, an apothecary, a modest reason, the cool dive guy, the stand in for Crichton himself, why is that familiar?, a rich guy on the island, a house that has a name, Goldeneye, silversomething, the recognition is double, he’s also the bad guy, I’m the guy who put this book together, roleplaying, npcs, a fun adventure book, not everything has to be super-deep, lovely bits, a little off, is is the book, the explanation, traveling to Jamaica, Easy Go, Pirate Latitudes, a pirate book set in Jamaica, Belize, Bermuda, Bahamas, the commonwealth is useless, a great youtuber, J.J. McCullough, in the discourse, what is Canadian culture?, we’re sure about that, literally how the country is formed, similar, the atmosphere and recreation is similar, born into wealth?, the amount of travel he did as a young man, paying his way through medical school, his residency, directing movies, George Orwell, a very Crichton move, furniture and groceries, journalist and homemaker, everything is more expensive now, $100 a day, inflation dude, a Maroon community, where escape slaves go to hide, crocodiles, the doctor business, medicine of non-plant based variety is venom, caduceus, everything else is plants, digitalis, foxglove, nitroglycerine, you have plants and snakes, where it gets dangerous, snakebites, playing very adventurous games, interested in thinking about stuff, the crocodiles of the island, he isn’t just in it for the girls, Binary, the cover is a lie, she never was in the water, a lot of lying going on right away, they were both coached, to give different answers?, a shoutout to Sherlock Holmes, it has alum in it, forensics, drop some cigar ash, bauxite, from Jamaica though the Panama Canal to British Columbia, Alcan, authentic details, making it specific, post-doctoral fellowship studies, ER is his experience, House, M.D., most doctors stop studying, in his nature, outstanding, wanted to achieve in so many areas, minus child, a lot of learning to do, not in a happy place, Jesse is not a computer doctor, widespread and various problems, power supply, speakers pull a lot of power, a usb failure, as frustrating as fuck, very The Good Place, Jesse heard, a low level issue, Primal, as close to Robert E. Howard as you’re every going to get, in Gaelic or something, Graham Hancock territory, so well told and so beautiful, when man is reduced to his primal nature, a show with a thesis, some idea they want to present, Evan’s not going to like this, what triggers people is very interesting, injustice in the world, whatever triggers you is different and unique for every prison, Star Wars triggers Evan, Andor, very solid, Jesse doesn’t think Evan can get over it, Start Warts is stupid, Rogue One, prequels usually don’t work, mining, if there was a rebellion how did it start?, pretty good, not everything Star Wars is equally shit, on the feels, a baby Yoda!, armor is cool, Paul, Boba Fett, told correctly, little something to chew on, very well done, most stuff is crap, Sturgeon’s Law is probably 10% right, interesting places, Archaeology Magazine, slightly different than Indiana Jones, what things are being dugup, the techniques are boring but necessary, a lot of data, you don’t get a lot of metal, totem poles etc., petroglyphs, glacial archaeology, not just an arrowhead, Secrets Of The Ice, see glaciers again, Garibaldi Lake, squirrels [actually chimpunks], Nepal, Vietnam, 2023.

HARD CASE CRIME - Grave Descend By Michael Crichton

Grave Descend by Michael Crichton

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The SFFaudio Podcast #736 – READALONG: Blaze by Stephen King

Jesse, Paul Weimer, and Evan Lampe talk about Blaze by Stephen King.

Talked about on today’s show:
Richard Bachman, the intro and/or an interview, 170 pages and rewriting the first 100, a lost book, kind of a cool story, the least interesting Bachman books, the original when he dies, 300 years later, they’re going to find that the book is radically different, Thinner, Stephen King wrote that book and not Bachman, the reason he was outed, it was easy for people to tell, 8 hours 15 minutes, Ron Mclarty, obvious it was written by Stephen King, so pessimistic, gangsters, Roadwork, optimism in the novels, 35 years, 1972/73, 2007, Rage, The Long Walk, The Running Man, the things that he’s done to make it updated are very odd, The Smurfs, the updated version of The Stand, when a new Donald Westlake book comes out, Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, updating the dates, the estate doing it, adding in cut pages, it’s inconsistent, the world seems of the 1970s, what year is it set?, set in the present day, all the profits from this book are going to a charity, sad house for boys, rich guy who wants to do good, Hard Case Crime, they don’t pay on time, maybe he cares?, why does he have to update it?, he needs to update it, something changed, salvageable material here, saleable, contemporary radio announcements, to make it more present, orphanages, the backstory vs. the frontstory, the present vs. the past, a fifty year gap, a kidnapping plot, Child Heist by Richard Stark, Jimmy The Kid by Donald E. Westlake, Parker, Dortmunder, Stark does the dark, Dortmunder finds a novel, follow this recipe, George created the plan, Blaze fulfilling the plan, the old Richard Bachman vs. the new Richard Bachman, redeeming Blaze, he loves the kid at the end, good question, very King, he almost kills the kid a few times, Of Mice And Men by John Steinbeck, is it supernatural?, his son is smart, he shines, he’s actually not dumb, he’s been convinced he’s dumb, Charlie from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, George is the superego, don’t masturbate, displayed intelligence, there’s a wisdom in wash your hands, he’s not retarded, he’s just slow, bad at math, the hand of Stephen King vs. the original hand of Richard Bachman, he gives his full name, slow vs. stupid, why did he do that, you wanna get caught, raising the kid, keeping the money, going to someplace warm, we’re going to Disneyland!, that marketing phrase didn’t exist in the 70s, a much grittier book, afraid to think about it, the kid dies, the rewrite that saves the kid, comparing it to Mice and Men, George kills Lenny, too damaging to rabbits and ladies, he doesn’t know his own strength, the dustbowl, hobos, interesting characters, this only exists because of the rewrite, page 49, a pile of newspapers, raged about the redneck republicans, the republicans hated poor people, that goddamn wet in the Whitehouse, page 160, dumb shit, the republican national committee, page 125, a republican senator who had taken a bribe, 173, rich asshole republican millionaires, page 161, replacement republican, fuck those rich republicans, page 80, how the republicans fuck the poor, fat stupid republicans, “right wing”, who are we supposed to root for, we feel sorry for Blaze, he can’t be doing it to help the story, throw in HIV, the feeling is still in the 70s, the whole counter-culture narrative, hippies vs. the man, no need to think too much about it, he couldn’t resist, it doesn’t help the book, at the end of the book, the baby name, another junior, a cut on his forehead, forehead damage, trying to make some connections between fathers and sons, how a state raises a child, what we should do, what we should think, this little baby’s not going to have a scar, Blaze is snuffed out, especially for Lenny, if the town gets to him, Lenny is dangerous, societal problems, Fondly Fahrenheit by Alfred Bester, a disabled person, George tells him so, he’s sympathetic to the kid, raise him right, he’s incapable of it, this book’s message is unclear, he’s doing it AGAIN, a recurrent drumbeat, the politicians are taking bribes, campaigning for the Democrats, he can’t help himself, organized crime, in the machine, more cynical, zone out that stuff, like the boobs in Philip K. Dick, it has a woman therefore it has boobs, this is a tremendous tragedy, social programs, the orphanage, the schools, the prison programs, Bluenote the farmer, very Bachman, our institutions no longer function, that’s how capitalism works, The Running Man, why the society broke down, the best part of the book, at the local town meeting, they’re having sex!, it’s consensual, stealing stuff, leads to babies like Blaze, good upstanding Republicans, don’t beat your children, I’m going to take you on, not being a kidnapper, stealing sweaters, kidnapping is wrong, Bluenote is actively trying to fix society, his lecture about capitalism, the god of this book kills him off, direct message, The Philosophy Of Stephen King, positive reviews, of course, 50% is Dark Tower content, 25% shining related, nothing about IT, big into philosophy, the philosophy of Donald E. Westlake, in setting patterns, in some certain details, resignation is a kind of philosophy, how to be an individual within a society, Bluenote is the most Stephen King like character in the book, he kills him, why?, Bachman writing the story, in the end, a tragedy, if Blaze had stuck on the farm, his adopted son, a nice spot at the table, the farm supervisor, no poker, he’d be good at it too, that closes that door to Blaze, for this book to exist, to have him go down the path, wrong ideas in the history of humanity, evolution is a ladder, evolution is a bush, technology is progress, trying to make things less worse for some sometimes, what went wrong?, no social programs for people like Lenny, full of social programs!, you can’t own this kid anymore, send me a picture of you, major tragedy, trying to get his shit together, if I can get that money, a big hammock for me, a little hammock for him, the stereotype of the Democratic answer: throw money at welfare queens, he kills off the characters he can’t fix, an inheritor of capital, that Lovecraft trope that Evan identified, hide the past, kinda bleak, mostly right, King would have been better off, Bachman is dead, The Regulators is basically a King book, he shouldn’t have rewritten it, he should have published it with Hard Case Crime, a very 70s book, ever cover is shit, Blaze carrying the kid, the girl in the blueberry fields getting fucked, the saleswoman at the baby store, he’s fucked up this book, break into the university library and make a photocopy, more authentic, this feels inauthentic, because it was a Bachman books, more short stories, very brutal, very Bachman, what does that society mean, an allegory for life, not my life, live longer than me or not, it’s horrible, almost too easy, a baby being spoonfed, we don’t feel like Blaze is wrong, he kills the dog, he kills the old lady, when he kills the FBI agent, a movie agent, play up the FBI angle, the George angle, supernatural, the movie of Thinner, a gypsy curse, curses the lawyers, nice body horror, lizard skin, fuck you man, they meet with him, pass the curse on to someone else, cursed cake, fuck it I’ll eat the pie too, a bleak ending, Friday The Thirteenth: The Series, Red Letter Media on Creepshow and Creepshow 2, Ted Danson and Leslie Nielsen, The Raft, a very different thing than a novel, for an anthology series, a Twilight Zone with a harder edge, isn’t that strange, isn’t that a reversal, the worst part of The Mist, the religious lady, King’s point, we can’t actually get along, but is he wrong?, in The Stand too, once the government is gone we’re all going to kill each other, ruined for King by Bachman, The Running Man, They Live (1988), a politically active story with a solution to the problem, operating on instinct, George is an inconsistent character, when he’s a ghost, kill the kid, I don’t want what Bachman wrote, George is not mean to the kid, George is a different kind of dumb, what can you do?, this book offers no solutions, one of those Fugitive movies, he was innocent the whole time, I don’t care that you’re not guilty, Blaze goes to the paupers field, his kid is gonna be a football player, very dissatisfying, Stephen Kinged out, Fairy Tale, the pictures, the reviews are quite good, not very many good reviews, Pauline Kael, what Evan is doing on his podcast, a bunch of theories, what exactly is Evan doing, reviewing vs. writing a review, this podcast is not a review podcast, a two hour discussion of a book is not a review, some amazing insights, It is too long, The Stand is longer, 7 books, 4000 pages, an investment of time and energy, another one like Revival, it dug pretty deep, Firestarter, a daddy daughter adventure, the mom’s dead, kinda sweet, The Night Flier, The Mist, Rage, Roadwork, Revival, Everything’s Eventual, Danse Macabre, the big house book: The Shining, Pet Semetary, 90s stuff, playing with ideas, before he was injured, high concept stuff, Dolores Claiborne, Bag Of Bones, his twitter account, people he’s following, he doesn’t follow many people, defunct TV shows, using twitter as a way of journaling and sending messaging, you can’t read that many things, what does it really even mean, Stephen King plays Bachman on Sons Of Anarchy, he’s the cleaner, 80s preferably, he’s a cool motorcycle man, fun character fun scene, off the air for years, he’s not interacting with probably half the people he would see, people who tweet at him, is it not a bubble, Jesse is in a bubble, 24/7 interested in rescue animals, desert running, 10,000 or more following, 10,000 or more followers, dog about to be put down send money now, actively trying to save the world of rescue dogs, vote and give money to charity, clearly what Jesse is doing is not solving it either, drink more beer, smoke less cigarettes, in the genre space and as a person, sentimental and squishy, fun fact, very disciplined, eating less is hard, other sins, Evan found food kinda boring, half Polish and Ukrainian, cautiously exploring the food of Vietnam, how was it Paul, [TIME TRAVEL HAPPENS], the changes didn’t help, what Smurfs?, an issue with King, Cell, engaging with the ideas of cellphones, stupid but kind of interesting, Samuel Jackson, a zombie movie with cellphones, transmit the virus by having a phonecall with somebody, a new collective consciousness, a science fictiony idea, no tech, a payphone, he fucked this book up, he’s gonna wait five years, I can fix Rage, I can fix the school shooting book, he can’t fix that book, a pretty funny project, make Stephen King fix rage, Misery, Cujo, I’m going to break your legs unless you fix Rage, I need sequels, writer friends, writers being threatened by fandom, Misery is pretty good, the captivity and the torture he endures awakens creativity, a very meta book, hardcover Misery, a Hard Case Crime, there’s life in this character, if you bully the author enough, appreciated, send Evan an email, a genuine listener to Evan’s actual podcast, a quiet listener, a year of Mark Twain coming up, a total Mark Twain readthrough, 7 or 8 volumes, Cosmic Computer/Junkyard Planet, regular time, a [Larry] Niven story, a political point about the lefties, Stephen King and Larry Niven should write a book, the Dungeon series created by Philip Jose Farmer, he can’t even write with himself, Bachman’s dead, Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain, The Many Headed Hydra by Peter Linebaugh and Marcus Rediker, The Skull by Philip K. Dick, jetlagged and no wifi, The Story Of Civilization, the origin of capitalism, Shadows In Zamboula by Robert E. Howard, Prince Alberic And The Snake Lady, Bartleby The Scrivener, Black House by Peter Straub and Stephen King, to honour him, Ghost Story, they’re all 22 hours, he bulked it up, thin volumes, writing in the modes of [James M.] Cain, [Jim] Thompson, and [Richard] Stark, Wisconsin people like long books, Sinclair Lewis, highest per hundred person presence of bars, not a lot to Wisconsin, man, the scenery, the longest most brilliant books of the 70s, August Derleth, Robert Bloch, is Joe Hill the baby in this book?, literally the kid in Creepshow, Cabinet Of Curiosities, like an issue of Weird Tales, the new you skin, a horror story for girls, body horror, she kills her supportive husband, so bleak and dark, based on a webcomic, the Lovecraft adaptations, the Pickman, Popeye’s accent, they fucked it up, The Dreams In The Witch House, a bad choice, Gilman, The Graveyard Rats, The Hound, the practical effects, relies on CGI, it doesn’t make a lot of sense, necromancer, cliche Lovecraft, they’re all period pieces, Lot 36, a new star even tho he’s old, Tim Blake Nelson, a Cohen Brothers actor, Watchmen, punished, traditional, The Autopsy, Michael Shea, infodump is bad, exposition is good, The Outside, a comedy, so gruesome, morally disturbing, putting the goop on, The Murmuring, The Walking Dead, The Viewing, a 70s period piece, how big Black Mirror was, two stories from Weird Tales, movie based horror, weird fiction, the whole point of the weird, Lovecraft [isn’t] a horror writer, a science fiction writer, a good example of weird fiction example, the relationship between students, “Dicky”, a class based thing, an age based thing, the colloquial language, “dropped him”, Arkham, the subways, Boston, Salem, that annoying plot, the immigrant woman, her families heirlooms, cliche end, EC Comics is not weird fiction, a realm of knowledge beyond you, the way it was done, the hopping never pays off, NOTHING, focusing on the can of TAB, bad direction, bad editing, a prisoner in Vietnam, the class analysis was fucking awful, this guy is racist so he should die, listening to right wing radio, hate listening, “right on”, we’re supposed to hate this guy, after that monster kills him, the whole thrust of this story is to see a deplorable destroyed, having debts, spite, selling him lots on the sly, he’s punished for being an asshole, in a Lovecraft story, punished for his ancestors, Jesse is politicizing the story, they had the same problem, physically attacked for debts they owe, a gambling problem, David Hewlett, this is very cool, most people wouldn’t do it that way, chopping up rabbits, I’m glad I’m not a woman, try to appreciate it, Brown Jenkin, underrated masterpiece, see you in two weeks, don’t disturb me.

Blaze by Stephen King

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The SFFaudio Podcast #733 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Nudist Camp by Orrie Hitt


The SFFaudio Podcast #733 – Nudist Camp by Orrie Hitt – read by Evan Lampe. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the novel (4 hours 21 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants include Jesse and Evan Lampe.

Talked about on today’s show:
1957, paperback original, Evan’s falsetto, a fun one to read, an interesting guy, 150 or so books, mostly public domain, disposable, available to read, available to be narrated, title wise, Never Cheat Alone, Torrid Wench, each was easy pickins, lovers kissin, crime novel adjacent, “sleazecore”, a science fiction novel but the genre is different, stupid-interesting entertainment, an adult at the time, the drug store, the spinner rack, behind the counter?, well written, fluffy, the plot makes sense, fetish for sex, ideas in my science fiction, talking about the fins on rocketships, fetish books for men, romance novels for men: talking about guns, Executioner and Deathlands novels, some hard man walking through the Mad Max world, extended mag, books for dumb people, really interesting things in this book, Brother And Sister by Donald Westlake, real estate obsession, Levittowns, rising middle class, who owns property, an easy go to plot, a marriage breaking up, men who went overseas, Iceland vs. Germany, a poor girl from Iceland, an Iceland slur, bojack?, bohunk, making up Iceland like an alien planet, the cultural stuff, interesting if true?, am I learning something about Iceland, the hotsprings, the brief summers, it being poor, some Viking culture that somehow survived, a very small population, one of the smallest european countries by population, taken over by the British who handed it to the Americans, you’re free now, apparently they don’t have a Swedish accent, Paul didn’t want to do this one because of all the nudity, all the violence, all the wife hitting, abusive, get back together at the end, they reconcile, we’lll go with Ed being the badguy, scamming people, taking the photos then blackmailing people, the hotel room, the film, get the property from her, the ex-husband comes and saves the day, not a classic, always Jesse’s story, an archaeological stratum, this fossil, what other fossils are under there?, floating around in people’s minds, learning about nudism, granola crunching islands, religious colonies, summer camps for various church organizations, fearful of falling under their religions, weird festival people, real life experience of weird nudists, Allan Alda’s character in MASH, nudism magazines, photographer magazine, he liked women, Corporal Klinger, 50s aesthetic, The Door Into Summer by Robert A. Heinlein, spending time with a nudist, their philosophy, a thing in Germany, the whole theory of nudism, he doesn’t get more serious, trying to separate nudism from sex, supposed to titillate, the opening scenes of the book, looks at herself in a full length mirror, a smut book but very educational, seems kinda of tame, very little penetration, very few pearl necklaces, the good organizer, the speech, the lecture, it’s about health and our natural state, body positivity, one step away from a pure smut book, a scene that should turn you off, ugly flabby lady, gut over her thighs, boobs like pendulums, that was a test, is this about sex?, not identical with being a swinger, related?, Heinlein did both, your average person picking up the book, from the woman’s pov, our Icelandic gorgeous lady and her abusive husband, they’re rich in land, she has a maid and a gardner, an interesting subplot, the pregnancy, an ethical gloss, written quickly, “Sometimes the whole world stinks”– Orrie Hitt, the King of Tri-State Sleaze, Apocalypse-Confidential.com, Orrie Hitt’s mythos, that’s amazing!, Lawrence Block, easter eggs, always the same movie playing in the movie theatre, you’re getting a secret history of the united states, all the sex shops, punanyi train fan , Orrie Hitt is on the rise, good to hear, EAP aka @punanytrainfan [account deleted] on twitter, literally read it aloud, a thousand year old book, Ḥayy Ibn Yaqẓān by Ibn Tufail, a book of philosophy, Daniel DeFoe, raised by a gazelle, Aristotelianism filtered through the Arabic worldview, Avicennan Aristotelianism, building the whole system from scratch, building capitalism from scratch, a short book, a few things he’s working on, Mark Twain, hinted at Heinlein, just teasing Jesse, excusing with the Library Of America, every book, taking Heinlein in doses, doing it with a Hugo in mind, Jesse’s Tom Godwin cold equations told as a star trek episode, the plot of Mudd’s Women, a bajoran slave girl, race jokes on a federation ship, it deserves a hugo and a nebula and a seuin and a master of fantasy award, the atom award, does it come with a rocket ship, a carbon atom, throw them in a garbage, awards, just play the games, put your pronouns in your bio, a lot of laughing, psychopath laughing at yourself, too pale, too male, looking at the lists, not impressed, consistently poorly researched, Jesse wants to learn something, entertainment, back to Orrie Hitt, not called nudist colonies anymore they’re called nudist camps now, a counterculture, a separate state, go for a week, summer camp, a nudist colony in the winter, why they like the location, set in New Jersey, hidden away, not bothered by the locals, not going to happen in the winter, Florida, what do they do?, standing around naked eating hot dogs, swimming, croquet, let’s go to the nudist camp!, like minded body positive people without hangups, written just as a non-sex book, the sex stuff in it, have only couples come together, don’t take singles, the subplot, blackmail, keep coming to the camp, not a very good sex book, subplot, a chaste proper good relationship, 1950s morality, she gets pregnant, a morality tale, Della has this new boyfriend, after she breaks up with her husband, not ethically suspect, we’re titillated, putting her bra on, fit in with the crowd, she gets shot in the leg, defending nudism, on the cover it is a sex book, a crime novel, genuinely surprised, we’re supposed to be suspicious of him, seemed legit, we were surprised, do you blame her for getting back together with him, wraps up the plot nicely, getting back together with, Stephen King wouldn’t be able to write this book, the woman has to escape, he’s got too many hangups for this book, could Bachman try?, the wrong kinda traumas, a nice person, very sympathetic, as an immigrant story, tricked into marrying a German whore, a cloud over her, a poor Icelandic waif, a golddigger, reputation in the community, one scene in the hotel, the pornographic film, the bank, the lawyer, learned a lot about the 1950s, experiencing it on the periphery, why Hawkeye likes nudist magazines, the nudist philosophy vs. wanting to see naked people, very clear about that, a legit claim, born nude, practically naked, shorts and short sleeves, not being over-clad, getting vitamin D, having a tan making you feel mentally better?, not enough sun, given our species previous history, we probably get too little sun, a funny phenomenon, not allowed to show boobs unless they’re natives, nude foreign women, a british or Irish, the page 3 girl, how do we explain this phenomena, a racy thing, what makes it racy is the prudery, creepy to see a creeper, scary old bodies, herniated bodies, a book all about bodies, their experience through their heads, the injury to her leg, getting pregnant and thinking about that, why is she saying these things about this baby, you don’t need to get an abortion, in most of the sleaze books, sex doesn’t necessarily lead to worries about pregnancy, begging for a baby from her husband, more smut books, more sleazecore books, more to them just sex, here too, the time?, self-censorship, doctor labels, The Naked Lunch supreme court case, what happened to comics neutered comics, defending it to your wife, the study of strange women who do strange things, she’s super hot in the shower, fat bodies, another bait and switch, pick that up for the incest, a horrible suicide and insanity ending, real estate calculations, the shame is different, a shame book, she’s a poor girl, essentially raped in Iceland, a traumatized person she’s pretty strong, pretty fucking terrible, Paul would not like how this book ends, what are her options?, not highly educated, what marriage is so popular for, real estate, big in China, she’s rock poor, she marries a middle class guy who thinks he’s going to inherit wealth, squanders the money, ends on a happy note, gives her a baby and becomes a doting father, be good Christians and believe in redemption, what are her skills?, he knew how to build a big house (with full length mirrors), look at her assets, run a little business, something she can do with her life, reveals himself as the bad guy, what can she get from Ricky?, adopt that baby, partners, all the men betrayed her, Ricky saved the day, in “Sleaze Camp Part 2”, a good moral camp, what the future’s going to be like, set in the 1850s, the photography stuff, if it was the 1750s, a guy behind a curtain sketching quickly, civil war portraits, still images, sunbathers, it is a tech book, pre-birth control (the pill), a tech thing, what makes this non-mimetic fiction is that it is somehow is like a piece of science we can explore, look what people are worried about, an after WWII Iceland plot, we don’t know much about Orrie Hitt, seems to be thoughtful, as book every two weeks at the prime of his career, six sex scenes, explaining to Scott [Danielson], agreeing with a J.K. Rowling, you’re going to have to put TERF in your twitter bio now, why people like her books, set pieces, very movie like this big battle, this cute scene, that cute scene, a plot in the background, the ride, titillation throughout the book, attentive to the plot, the first Harry Potter book, it read like a movie, not that much internal getting to know the character, this is an intellectual experience, didn’t get hard at all, Lawrence Block and Donald Westlake, not heavy on the sex, Netflix everyday, the covers/posters/cards, The Reader, a nazi woman?, an illeterate woman?, Kate Winslet in her pajamas, the strategy is still there, two naked guys on the card, a lot of prudery in the states, no explicit sex on Netflix?, on the newsstands besides the explicit, science fiction, westerns, romance, nice to look at, more titillation on the covers and in the descriptions, Hustler, sex letters, Penthouse forum?, letters about free speech!, reading a magazine with a nakedish woman on the cover, like the HBO of magazines, less censored things that people are interested in, Jimmy Carter had lust in his heart, rather than the lie they do all day, Obama’s exit interview, Joe Rogan’s interview with the founder of Rolling Stone, way less censored than everything else, shitlib former hippie, upset and worried, now that Trump had won, I’m not really interested in lying anymore, softcore interview, a formality, the shitty answer and the truthful answer, being more honest, a weird sleazecore book, insight into, a good prose stylist, clean and easy to follow and interesting, unaffected, he reminds us of her body every few pages, experiencing interest, a big enough sample, read a romance novel, anything of value, tiny little bit of sex, as tame or tamer, slim romance volumes, Blaze by Stephen King, A Night In Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny, less mad as time goes by, thinking of Jesse as the star, Harry Turtledove, Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain, why Evan is not a fan of tourism or travel in general, why travel sucks, Michael Crichton books, Grave Descend, Easy Go, super consumable, very solid writer, maybe that was never true, “science fiction books”, not natural writers, Stephen King is a natural writer, Neil Gaiman, Ted Chiang, Stephen King, Andy Weir, The Troop, near the bottom, just body horror, the lowest level, the gross out, fewer of those, idea based stuff is really cool, Cosmic Computer/Junkyard Planet by H. Beam Piper, The Heads Of Cerberus by Francis Stevens, The Black Stranger by Robert E. Howard, seven John Lange books, fairly thrilling at times, Hard Case Crime republished them, a reuse of a failed hard case crime spinoff [Gabriel Hunt], Hunt For Adventure, The Spider, The Shadow, Indiana Jones, an adventure book series, churn out a series character, Binary, Eaters Of The Dead, he’s really playful, amazingly good at transforming thought into words in the form of a novel, after Blaze, its long, spending 20 hours with Mark Twain.

Nudist Camp by Orrie Hitt

Nudist Camp by Orrie Hitt

Nudist Camp by Orrie Hitt

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #730 – READALONG: Easy Go by Michael Crichton

Jesse, Paul Weimer, Cora Buhlert, and David J. West talk about Easy Go by Michael Crichton

Talked about on today’s show:
1968, The Last Tomb, a pretty terrific book, what’s the title mean?, dreams of fame and fortune, is that what the book’s really about though?, pre-Indiana Jones, a heist story, Topkapi (1962), stealing archaeological treasures for private hands, they’re not good people, the girl’s with you, Nicos killing children is find, Lisa, how expensive are you, ten million dollars, you know you’re doing the wrong thing here, the ending, a better title, a funner title, a soft ending, a sudden ending, is something wrong with my copy?, he finishes the book, an okay ending, put em all in prison, getting oput of prison is going to be the sequel, mushy, semi-justified by the text, the clever Egyptian archaeology department, a step ahead, hadn’t left the scarab there, they had their mark from the beginning, stupid foreigners, the Romans, the Greeks, the Assyrians, treasure hunters, remarkably diverse, Mission: Impossible, a hard novel, a noir, surprises, switching main characters, Barnaby, suddenly Pierce, Lord Grover, Lisa’s dad for real?, bio-father, purposely leaving it vague, he couldn’t legally do it, the narrator is really good, Christopher Lane, the cover art, the original paperback, pulpy cover, kissing dancing holding pistols, a reuse cover, Hard Case Crime had a second imprint called Gabriel Hunt, Charles Ardai character, a Mack Bolan, Remo Williams style pulp hero, Hunt For Adventure, Indiana Jones style, reused the same art, Glen Orbik, a revolver, a mummy, use the gun on the snakes, Luxor, a generic that works, down to the last 10 minutes of the book, it fits, it matches the mood, evokes Egypt, Binary, only on the cover to sell the book, his accents are good, his characters are distinct, later Crichton, his formula, Timeline, Pirate Latitudes, a real-life ending, he didn’t want to kill people, shoulda ended in a noir, the best solution, an Oceans Eleven vibe, published 3rd, his first written novel, $1500, a stressed out medical student, L.A. Times, 1974, The Terminal Man, took him a week, he went to egypt, loved it, and was reading paperbacks on the plane, I can do this, a very old youtube video, hired by Munsey’s, starts typing, where’d you learn to right, a real pulp writer, some people just really got it, they read pulp, they can write pulp, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Robert E. Howard, Spear And Fang is ok, Terry Pratchett, an amazing writing career, characterization is very solid, dropping information about Egypt, each location, the price of things, the other locations, Amsterdam, diamond dealer, dull and tomblike, he absolutely captures the atmosphere, he has been there, you have to learn how to watch black and white movies, silent movies are a lot harder than black and white movies, pictures of black and white monkeys, making Casablanca in colour, some things need black and white, Edgar Wallace, we have to learn these things, the goodreads reviews, pulpy fun, new favourite book, its like they don’t know how to read this kind of book, a paperback, for the late 60s and the mid 1970s, racy fun, nice and thin, what an airport novel is today, opposite of horribly long and badly written, not meant to be remembered, give me another John Lange, you’ve been reading all these John Lange books, a professional sale, this is solid, a little bit unpredictable, the treasure, shines in the reflectivity of the characters, thinking about Egypt, doing more than is required, this is the real tomb [holds up skull], the one you can never leave, *yawn implausible romance two stars*, a first, better than some of his later books, later bloated, Binary is taut, not as filmic as it could have been, breezier and easier, how can people read so badly, unfamiliar with the form, he’s seen it before, of course you’ve seen it before!, didn’t you really enjoy reading it?, really enjoyable, Paul plays role playing games, Fate Of Cthulhu, stop Nyarlathotep, Infocom games, Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, Infidel, find the pyramid, survive it’s traps and treasures, command prompt words, get flashlight batteries, put flashlight batteries in flashlight, turn flashlight on, you see a room, boxes full of goodies, pocket fluff and no tea, the microscopic space fleet, playing a real a-hole, terrible to his crew, a real western imperialistic jerk, the last trap gets you, a Kobayashi Maru, for narrative, pray for forgiveness, terrible takes, disaster pron, Kelly, banaly racist and sexist, enjoyable enough but nothing special, a stock character, a great role, every actor wants to be him, he wears that mask so well, Roger Moore as Lord Grover, a playboyish guy, the handsome Hollywood lead, Barnaby, a great character actor, Steve Buscemi, a slight role, Niccos, even he doesn’t end up dead, Italian western, did you not notice his backstory, an Egyptian whore a Greek story, how he opens a door, sleeping on the dock, he still has a hubcap, reading Richard Stark, I can do this, interest, each character has just enough characterization, Sylvia, why she’s acting that way, masterful characterization, a natural success, a great way to solve a story, back to square one, experience points is stupid, Conan should start every adventure the way he ends it, deus ex machina, aliens ex machina, the celebrated archaeologist, a very steep diminishing returns, most people who have eyes and ears, The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, released with extra materials on DVD, the treasure is the experience, he goes to Europe and hangs out with famous artists doing cubism, intrigue in 1917 Russia, North Africa, the Belgian Congo, 1906 – 1922, a tourist visit, but an amazing one, not good people in a lot of cases, T.E. Lawrence, Baghdad to Berlin trainline, Lawrence of Arabia killed my great grandfather, all the stuff in the background, the Aswan dam, the Russian wives in the marketplace, all that detail, not even Cold War, moving the temples, building giant dams, a post-war thing, Drowned Hopes by Donald E. Westlake, cutting edge at the time, not quite in the zeitgeist, this guy knows Egypt, the United Arab Republic, a book of the late 60s, Sadat, hedging his bets, Nasser, seeing all these negative reviews, didn’y you seen this part?, looking a the hieroglyphics, that exposition, bought it all, he dreamed this up, read it diagonally, apocryphal, when Arnold Schwarzenegger was governor of California, an acrostic, babble in the middle, the bragging vizier, my king I’ve served you well, when Egypt was at its eye, Egyptologists disagree, what triggered Jesse, the breasts of every female, cigarettes, facts are in quotes, slowmo novel, dude you’re not the target audience, a thing you do, decadent Englishman, smokes pot and has girls around him, the facts are placed not littered, it’s really well done, Amsterdam, terrorist attacks, done many times, I too became lost, torture porn, the beating of the young boy, some had breasts, you’re not actually supposed to remember the hero, Peirce is the least interesting character, he’s the plot, they recognize each other from Korea, they’re equals, they’re both captains, an officer’s club, we never actually get to see the split, in the middle of a Richard Stark novel, Paul disagrees completely, Grover’s in it for the fun, pay the ransom myself, which characters are untrustworthy, Pierce is the most trustworthy character, he doesn’t even know why he’s doing it, Pierce doesn’t know why he exists, he’s the blank canvas, Barnaby is conflicted, don’t touch this, it belongs in a museum, tenure, a better job, they’re all adjuncts, Conway, we trust him implicitly, jokey and fun, great introduction, he saves the girl with the gun, smuggled diamonds out of South Africa, Jim Brown, Steve James, blacksploitation movies, Niccos in the most untrustworthy character, willing to kill, he sells out the group, even Iskander, a meaty role, subtle and sneaky and pretend to be dumb, malapropisms, you are beautiful today, which guy is going to be the problem, take the easy route, get into a fight he doesn’t need to take, a problem with Lord Grover’s girls, blabbing to the wrong person, an outside problem, something we couldn’t have foreseen, a nice hard ending, Infocom’s hints, InvisiClues, not fair for pirates, no forums online, in a magazine, Gore Vidal’s Thieves Fall Out, maybe that’s the issue for me, not mention slaves and cotton plantations, Agatha Christie, Norman Mailer, Conway holding the skull, a lecture or a joke, Egyptologists go look at this scarab, they’re weirdos, not obsessed with death, certain rich people, The Land Of The Pharaohs (1955) with Joan Collins, a memorable scene, The Persuaders, City On The Edge Of Forever, Star Trek, an impregnable tomb, speaking English, if they had done Prey (2022) in the original Comanche, have us read subtitles, inaccessibility, learning to read, learning to watch movies, learning to play computer games, Dead Man Down (2013), get revenge, he’s a barbarian, he’s a robot, my parents are German immigrants that’s why my name is Matrix, the dregs of what we used to have, Steven Seagal, they’re great, the cheap Michael Dudikoff, making the grave goods, the piled up grave goods, gold daisies, creating that culture for this period, updating it, mention the Muslim Brotherhood, we’re not good at coming up with stuff like that, on a European tour, Paris, Greece, Capri, a brief scene set in Greece, the city is coming ever closer, the Colossi of Memnon, a big Robert E. Howard fan, if this was Stygia, a place Robert E. Howard never went to, a girl swimming naked in a pond, I hope this novel is about…, communist propaganda, I’ve never been to Iowa, he reads stuff from history, sets in real experiences, everything is based on Texas, Mexico and New Mexico, setting a story in a real place I’ve never been to, Howard stories set in the crusader states, the pre-middle ages, a crusader castle, 1950s in a place you’ve never been is harder than ancient Egypt, new world parrots in Europe, you don’t have anacondas in Egypt, 1870s Cairo, one guy who called me out, a ton of research, a tonne of research, what would Christmas decorations look like?, what would it smell like?, a picture from the 1930s, google street view, real estate signs, we’ve got the directions wrong, it’s in this cleft, wasted a couple of chapters digging, the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest wasn’t in the the Teutoburg Forest, Roman fortresses, modern cities, forgiving young people, they haven’t had life experience, airplanes had cigarette ashtrays on their handles, you could still smell it, make the seats smaller, KLM city hoppers, L.A. Noire, you’re an L.A. homicide detective, reconstructed huge swaths of 1950 [1947] Los Angeles, it sounds like that car does, rare cars, you can stop anywhere in the city and look at a street-corner, a research team of 5,000 programmers, makes Wiltshire Boulevard accurate, we don’t have that for most things, we’re disabled, Des Moines, Alan Moore’s Providence, New York, as a coherent whole it doesn’t make a lot of sense, a weak thesis, Robert Black is Lovecraft’s psychology, the drawings, 1919 New York, owls with glowing eyes, that nearby park, a picture of what reality was like, the architecture is correct, Cool Air, Jacen Burrows, a photograph as a drawing, accurate to the image being described, come to the thing with the right expectations, how to appreciate what your seeing, an apology for modern art, appreciating 1960s paperback novels, a really good book, greatness to come in this guy, eight total, thank Cora, Michael Crichton movies, the Binary TV movie, Hard Case Crime, almost always entertaining, the Stephen King ones, reprints, modern stuff is hit or miss, extra fun reading an old book, almost 5 decades, still reading it and giving it low ratings, skew young and female, check the copyright date, why are they not mentioning bombs?, reading older books, good YA books, problem books, Karl May, read it in a day, a short novel, Odds On, Scratch One, A Case Of Need, The Venom Business, Zero Cool, Dealing, Drug Of Choice, Grave Descend, Binary, to prevent an arms shipment, targeted assassination, sounds like a Donald Westlake novel, rob the Reina, a technothriller, it will have lots of breasts, read about breasts, artifact smuggling, an expert handler in venomous snakes, is he the killer’s real target, meh 4 stars, a Bondesque romp with off-puttingly sexist undertones, diver, the strange thing is the breasts, cigarette stains, pick a regular goodreads reviewer from the modern era, sending them back to 1971s, review of 1971: it’s gross they’re were cigarettes everywhere, when IMDB was a new thing, writing reviews is fun, semi-professionally can be hurtful, a review challenge, another thing to check off, let’s read more John Lange, star ratings are hurtful, Nerds Of A Feather, weird blinking gifs, November 27, Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain, Richard Bachman is not a shitlib but Steven King is, what would John Lange’s nickname be?, John Norman’s real name is John Lange, two of my favourite writers, a different feel, excited about a 1975 book, dinosaur hunters in the old west, Dragon Teeth, bone hunters, helping a student write an essay about Weird Tales, Hugh Rankin, some of the covers, Doak is Hugh Rankin’s middle name, the art style is quite different, interior Conans are Hugh Rankin, Frank Belknap Long, the style is different, pastiche, comic strips, spent time gazing, The Dunwich Horror, Virgil Finlay did a ton of covers for Weird Tales, painted covers, vignettes?, snake woman, The Were-snake, a thing for hangings, Margaret Brundage, naked woman, only 3 of her 67 covers don’t have women, Farnsworth Wright, The Zap Gun by Philip K. Dick, does Iowa have ditches?, a nice slim volume, the beauty of a rural setting, a Korean War vet?, maybe it is 1947, the sheriff doesn’t want to get involved (secretly a communist), lean into it, The Cannonball Run, Dean Martin is a commie, his middle name is Kill A Commie, a little bit of a throwback, A Matter Of Life And Death (1946), David Niven, how to watch it, make it an amazing experience, the cultural nuance, an expectation, movie watching ability, The Mark Of Zorro (1920), when its not an action sequence, Nosferatu (1922), Buster Keatons and Charlie Chaplins, unleash Metropolis (1927), in the theater with live music, dragging a friend along, taught to watch Shakespeare and opera, we teach it wrong, a guided experience, get used to the style, think about it like food, you don’t give the baby kimchi, french fries, children’s menus, some kids wont eat certain colours, film aficionado, missing a whole experience of art, a current film, no steadycams, a forgettable Fassbender movie, The Fabulous Baker Boys, The Grey Man (2022), a Russo bros movie, a spy version of a Marvel movie, feel better, forgettably watchable, a new up and comer, Knives Out (2019), was Marilyn Monroe tiny?, how tall is Ryan Gosling?, the propaganda, platform shoes, height shame, Linda Hunt, Silverado (1985) is a really good movie, Kevin Kline, Scott Glenn, Jeff Goldblum is the badguy, she’s amazing, NCIS Los Angeles, Gargoyles (1972) TV movie, Silence Of The Lambs, Man On Fire (1987), go in with no expectations, form CIA agent hired to bodyguard a girl in Italy, a movie that has heart, charismatic in his own weird way, why is this happening?, local Comicon, Keith Coogan, Adventures In Babysitting (1987), holding on to the rights, explaining Marvel and DC comics, The Unknown Soldier, its the trademarks, Obama giving Spiderman or Punisher a congressional medal of honor, Roger Corman’s Fantastic Four, we never got to see it, not that bad, that was a really good movie, it holds up, Chris Columbus, a sitcom?, Weird Science is so well put together, Robert Downey, Jr., they nailed the ending, a gym full of girls, the final scene, cut back to the gym, Lisa standing, pan up, you little monsters, Frankenstein and Bride Of Frankenstein, Einstein’s brain, they do it again, a totally stupid and really good, mid or low budgets, a renaissance period, they hold up, 1975-1987 is the period, Predator but not The Last Action Hero (1993), Collateral Damage is a massive decline, The Sixth Day (2000), True Lies is up, quality of films, Raw Deal (1986), Terminator 2 (1991) is technically better but The Terminator (1984) is a better movie, James Cameron, Alien (1979), Aliens (1986), Titanic is a good movie for other people, too long, Raise The Titanic (1980), Avatar is a good movie, The Abyss (1989), oddly forgotten, Ridley Scott, Black Rain (1989), Rising Sun (1993), Wesley Snipes’ best movie, Blade (1998), Major League (1989), Drop Zone (1994), Point Break (1991), Muder At 1600 (1997) Elizabeth Hurley as a terrorist, Clint Eastwood, Absolute Power (1997), lacking depth of back catalogue, we’re going to watch Predator (1987), children, key moments in Jesse’s life, the novelization of Predator, the novelization of Gremlins (1984), Carl Weathers, bro greeting, Dakota Beavers, Shane Black, The Predator (2018) is a really terrible film, the Golan-Globus Theater podcast, Dino De Laurentiis, Rollerball (1975), evil coprorations have taken over the planet, James Cann killing people and throwing balls in holes, no individual achievement, Norman Jewison, Fiddler On The Roof (1971), based on Billy Budd?, The Thomas Crown Affair (1968), In The Heat Of The Night (1967), 2015, ipods, audiobooks, The Iliad, a late adopter, 2013, podcasts are the thing now, youtubes podcasts, audio with science fiction and fantasy, the books we had gone through, the back catalogue, 9 hours long, an Arthur Machen semi-autobiographical novel, trying to make money, when it comes time you want to read The Dispossessed, guaranteed, make me take it down, not mentioned in the show, get to get some really narrow topics, run as long as people are willing to go without peeing, three hours is a good length, some good books, insights, Our Opinions Are Correct, makes Jesse read books, The Bus-Conductor by E.F. Benson, two Souvenir by Philip K. Dick episodes, there’s a door there’s a cat, felt honoured, Tippy Taps, a Murder She Wrote episode, Simon & Simon, and Magnum, PI, Nudist Camp by Orrie Hitt, The Black Stranger by Robert E. Howard, a non-fiction about traveling around Europe, A Night In Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny, cassettes, a hefty book, Twain is so good, Scott Danielson is hard to get, excited about The Heads Of Cerberus by Francis Stevens, 1904, super-science, half Japanese and half German, she invented the superhero, Man-God, Gladiator by Philip Wylie, newspaper woman in the future, an old sailoress tells a tall tale at the teashop, Friend Island, one of those inferior creatures, she and the island got along really well, just elect a woman, The Elf-Trap, a gyspy village in the forest, La Belle Dame Sans Merci, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, so pioneering, The Thrill Book, a precursor to Weird Tales, Sunfire, precedes the Weird Tales crew, a vivid imagination, standard racist tropes, some people can’t handle breasts, occasional racism, a funny meme on Tolkien and smoking, promoting smoking, eating mushrooms, a little kid thing, unable to adapt to the horrible mushrooms, we’re willing to live with it, the texture, they’re made of fungus, William Hope Hodgson, that creepy factor, really well told, good at creeping, punched Houdini, volunteered for WWI and got killed, so eager to get killed in the war, trench warfare, superiors don’t care, why go into Iraq or Afghanistan, Germany’s got to be repressed, ran away at 14 to be a doughboy, child soldiers, restrained themselves, unable to be restrained now, WWIII with Russia, American volunteers being paid by NATO, wagging the dog, 60 Minutes, talking over him, the emperor has no clothes, defending having mental faculties, Reagan goes away, so beyond the pale, horrifying to think about, the buck stops here thing, it stops in some vague place that you don’t have access to, Obama is busy making his money, Biden with a blindman on his elbow, it’s shocking, setting aside all past sins, humiliating, juice him up, his notes, George Bush, not a defensible guy, semi-competent, this guy used to know stuff, can’t finish a sentence, can’t remember the name of an actor, not the best and the brightest, when Rand Paul sounds like the sanest man, coming across like a genius, the lamest dystopia, the UK, Boris Johnson, okay he memorized a poem in Greek, Governor of California, the quality of the politicians has gone down so much, people don’t like Putin, he has his shit together, Justin Trudeau, Chrystia Freeland, Jacinda Ardern, you odnt need the They Live glasses anymore, The Shadow Kingdom, clearly evidence of serpent people, Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, compared to what?, there is no recession, all the homeless people everywhere, a lot of people on twitter, the arts community, the more liberal minded people, overly conservative, lean liberal, what’s true?, what’s for real?, you have to pick your team and stick with it no matter what, a way to line your own pockets, money laundering, the model in books is broken, indy stuff, a Baen anthology, trad pub, a book with Tantor Audio, 9 hours, a 30 hour Brandon Sanderson book, bundle, a western series, Tantor used to have their own store, Downpour.com, Blackstone publisher, audiobook empire, 40 different markets, Audible has been squeezing, any extra is gravy, the step down, traditional publishing, quick reads, Louis Lamour length, market distortion based on the subscription model, inflation on an infinitely replicable post scarcity object, Audible accounts without Audible subscriptions, the stumbling block, Lois McMaster Bujold, The Reader’s Chair, The Curse Of Chalion, eyes get worse, audiobooks were a fringe, the dominant form of book consumption, FanX, is it on audio, a tangible shift, its better, a nice fire, a dog at my feet, coffee in hand, beautiful woods outside, coding or photoshopping, on the ferry, most of Jesse’s students don’t know where they are, most kids have no sense of geography, where are we?, if they lose google maps, when we have autodrive cars, people wont know where they live, we’re offloading a lot of our processing to objects in our hands or our backpacks, its a himars, we’re doing that to ourselves, can’t identify Europe on a map, total fuckin weirdo, Dungeons & Dragons, Stranger Things, are the parents cursing them out?, are they allowed to play Dungeons & Dragons?, Commodore 64, Vic 20, we exhausted ourselves on this books, keep most of everything, Nudist Camp, mid-century erotica, a book every two weeks, fueled by ice coffee and cigarettes, paperback originals, somebody scanned, three strange women, Hot Cargo, The Peeper, Abnormal Norma, Man’s Nurse, The Sex Pros, Campus Tramp, depraved practices, normal love?, Evan Lampe’s narration of Mr. Adam by Pat Frank, 1947, 9 months later, all the men on planet earth have been sterilized, lead mine, a hot commodity, a comedy a premise, a light comedy, he loves his wife, a war footing, can black women get pregnant from this white man?, two Mongolians, a mine shaft gap, a delightful book, a great premise, sell you individual, The Brethren by H. Rider Haggard, a personal crusade, a bunch of nights, The White Company by Arthur Conan Doyle, her uncle is Saladin, they both marry her, they’re not polyandrists, very Robert E. Howard, the thews and the colours, inspired by a visit, a terrific book, Eric Brighteyes, the character is so dumb, a lurid cover, the greater bulk is from the 1970s, jazzed enough, standing on concrete for three days, Rider, British Columbia, Sir Walter Scott’s house, a railway point.

Easy Go by John Lange

Signet - Easy Go by John Lange

The Last Tomb by Michael Crichton

The Last Tomb by Michael Crichton

HARD CASE CRIME- Easy Go by Michael Crichton

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