Recent Arrivals: Audio Realms and Dark Realms Audio

SFFaudio Recent Arrivals

Audio RealmsHere’s a stack of mostly horror titles that have been inching their way into my dreams! It’s a solid mix of public domain novels (and collections) along with brand spanking new series and standalones. Check out Brian Keene’s modern horror tale, Castaways (its at the bottom). Keene writes comics, it may be the best place to start with the modern stuff! With regards to the PD material, I’m torn between People Of The Dark, which includes my favorite Conan story Queen Of The Black Coast, and Algernon Blackwood’s The Empty House And Other Ghost Stories. All of these titles should also be available in MP3-CD editions and MP3 download editions via TheAudiobookShop.com too.

A novel idea, take several of the modern issues of Weird Tales, and make an audiobook out of it…

AUDIO REALMS - Weird TalesWeird Tales
By various; Read by Wayne June and others
5 CDs – Approx. 6 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: August 2009
ISBN: 9781897304075
Includes tales from issues #336, 337 and 338 of Weird Tales: The Unique Magazine
Stories included:
Ripper! by William F. Nolan
Shore Of Night, Shore Of Day by Katrien Rutten
Hearts And Minds by Barbara Krasnoff
The Ghost Of Me by Melinda Thielbar
The Sacredotal Owl by Michael Bishop
Sympathy For Dragons by John Gregory Betancourt
The Upper Berth by F. Marion Crawford

This cover looks rather boring on first glance, but look closer, it has a bit more than you expect…

AUDIO REALMS - A Princess Of Mars by Edgar Rice BurroughsA Princess Of Mars
By Edgar Rice Burroughs; Read by Brian Holsopple
6 CDs – Approx. 6 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: August, 2009
ISBN: 9781897304457
Ex-confederate army captain John Carter finds himself unwittingly transported to Mars, while fleeing Apache Indians. This new world is populated by a race of monstrous Martians, whose culture is based on the ability to fight for their race. Fortunately, the gravitational difference between Mars and Earth has given him the strength that he will need for survival.on this hostile planet. John Carter battles ferocious Martian creatures, but gains the respect of the beautiful Dejah Thoris, Princes of Helium. This is the first of eleven in the ‘Mars’ series.

This is the second novel in a new series, but I’m betting that wouldn’t effect the story one whit…

AUDIO REALMS - Hunt For Adventure: Through The Cradle Of Fear by Gabriel HuntHunt: Through The Cradle Of Fear (#2 in the Adventures Of Gabriel Hunt series
By Gabriel Hunt (aka Charles Ardai); Read by Jim VanDusen
6 CDs – Approx. 8 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: November 2009
ISBN: 9781897304761
From the towers of Manhattan to the jungles of South America, from the sands of the Sahara to the frozen crags of Antarctica, one man finds adventure everywhere he goes: GABRIEL HUNT. Backed by the resources of the $100 million Hunt Foundation and armed with his trusty Colt revolver, Gabriel Hunt has always been ready for anything – but is he prepared to enter… The Cradle Of Fear? When a secret chamber is discovered inside the Great Sphinx of Egypt, the mystery of its contents will lead Gabriel to a remote Greek Island, to a stone fortress in Sri Lanka … and to a deadly confrontation that could decide the fate of the world!

Five words: QUEEN OF THE BLACK COAST. ’nuff said…

AUDIO REALMS - The Weird Works Of Robert E. Howard - Volume Two: People Of The DarkThe Weird Works Of Robert E. Howard – Volume Two: People Of The Dark
By Robert E. Howard; Read by Wayne June, Brian Holsopple, Gary Kohler, Bob Barnes and Charles McKibben
5 CDs – Approx. 5.5 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: August 2009
ISBN: 9781897304136
People Of The Dark is the second volume of The Weird Works Of Robert E. Howard presented in audiobook form. It continues to offer many of Howard’s works from the classic magazine Weird Tales meticulously restored to it’s original texts. This volume contains;People Of The Dark, Queen Of The Black Coast, The Garden Of Fear, The Haunter Of The Ring, Valley Of The Worm, The Challenge From Beyond and includes some of his famous heroes such as Conan.

The Willows gave me the willies, so I’m thinking these are perfect tales for a dark and stormy night and a bucket of ice cream…

AUDIO REALMS - The Empty House And Other Stories by Algernon BlackwoodThe Empty House And Other Stories
By Algernon Blackwood; Read by Brian Holsopple
6 CDs – Approx. 6 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: August 2009
ISBN: 9781897304686
Most connoisseurs of modern horror fiction rate Algernon Blackwood (1869-1951) as the finest horror writer of all time. Blackwood was unsurpassed in originality, atmosphere, and characterization. His finest works still surprise and shock today’s readers. The Empty House And Other Stories, originally published in 1906, was Blackwood’s first collection. It includes such classics as the title story, A Haunted Island, A Suspicious Gift, and many more.

This one sounds like a reverse Marco Polo story, with dragons, sorcerers and magic instead of pasta…

AUDIO REALMS - Gonji: Red Blade From The East (Volume 1) by  T.C. RypelGonji: Red Blade From The East (Volume 1)
By T.C. Rypel; Read by Brian Holsopple
8 CDs – Approx. 9 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: July 2009
ISBN: 9781897304549
Cast out from his Japanese homeland, Gonji, the Samurai warrior, journeyed across barbaric Europe in the quest of Vedun, the distant city in the loftiest peaks of the Carpathian Alps. Ceaselessly fighting the hated plague and hostile peasants, Gonji struggled to reach the mighty walls of majestic Vedun. But demons and dragons, and mages and monsters pursued the warrior across the wintry plains and the jagged mountains. His swords flashing with fury, Gonji battles his foes and strengthened his will, determined to conquer his hardships, and fulfill his destiny!

Apparently this is the first in a series, perhaps something along the lines of Jim Butcher’s Dresden series?

AUDIO REALMS - The Things That Are Not There by C.J. HendersonThe Things That Are Not There
By C.J. Henderson; Read by Charles McKibben
10 CDs – Approx. 9 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Realms
Published: July 2009
ISBN: 9781897304426
Private detective Theodore London ran the best agency in New York City until a demon-driven storm trashed his operation. Ready to quit the business, fate delivered a beautiful woman to his doorstep—one being pursued by an army of winged monsters determined to use her as the key to unlock a doorway that will lead the world to madness.

The plot of this novel kind of reminds me a bit of Terminal Freeze |READ OUR REVIEW|, but warmer…

DARK REALMS AUDIO - Castaways by Brian KeeneCastaways
By Brian Keene; Read by Maynard McKillen
7 CDs – Approx. 8 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Dark Realms
Published: March 2010
ISBN: 9871897304709
They came to the lush, deserted island to compete on a popular reality TV show. Each one hoped to be the last to leave. Now they’re just hoping to stay alive. It seems the island isn’t deserted after all. Contestants and crew members are disappearing, but they aren’t being eliminated by the game. They’re being taken by the monstrous half-human creatures that live in the jungle. The men will be slaughtered. The women will be kept alive as captives. Night is falling, the creatures are coming, and rescue is so far away.

Posted by Jesse Willis

JAMES BOND: You Only Live Twice by Ian Fleming

Aural Noir: Online Audio

“You only live twice:
Once when you’re born
And once when you look death in the face.”

-James Bond

You Only Live Twice (1964 Playboy Magazine)

If you’ve only seen the movie version of You Only Live Twice you’re in for a very pleasant surprise. Ian Fleming’s original novel is strikingly different from the movie of the same name. The movie, written at least in part by Roald Dahl, uses very little of the book – just a few of the characters and a couple of the settings. And while the movie’s story structure is very familiar, (having been later recycled in The Spy Who Loved Me, Moonraker and Tomorrow Never Dies) this stands in sharp contrast to the seemingly one-off nature of the novel (and the radio drama).

You Only Live Twice (1964 Playboy)

At the novel’s start Bond is despondent and listless over the death of his wife (recently murdered by Ernst Stavro Blofeld). Seeing Bond unable to do his job, M promotes him and gives him a “last-chance opportunity to shape up.” Bond is re-numbered as 7777, and assigned an “impossible mission”: to convince the head of Japan’s secret intelligence service, Tiger Tanaka, to betray the CIA and provide access to their top secret Soviet communique decryption machine. Much of the middle of the novel then takes the form of a kind of homosocial courtship between Bond and Tanaka. Eventually, Tanaka agrees to give up the data, but only in exchange for Bond’s agreeing to assassinate an eccentric resident alien named Dr. Guntram Shatterhand. Shatterhand, it seems, is operating a politically embarrassing “Garden of Death” where too many Japanese are going to commit suicide. Aided by former Japanese movie star Kissy Suzuki, Bond accepts the assignment on his personal authority, and with help in the form of make-up and training, attempts to penetrate Shatterhand’s coastal castle. Throw in a marriage, a pregnancy, lots of ninjas and a temporary case of amnesia and you’ve got one loaded story!!

You can get a great sense of of the novel from the exceedingly faithful radio dramatization available over on RadioArchive.cc!

Michael Jayston makes a fine Bond and Clive Merrison’s performance as Tanaka is solid, if not authentically Japanese.

BBC Radio 4You Only Live Twice
Based on the novel by Ian Fleming; Adapted by Michael Bakewell; Performed by a full cast
1 MP3 – Approx. 90 Minutes [RADIO DRAMA]
Broacaster: BBC Radio 4
Broadcast: 1990
Provider: RadioArchive.cc
Cast:
James Bond…..Michael Jayston
‘M’…..David King
Henderson…..Jame Laurenson
Tanaka…..Clive Merrison
Kissy…..Sayo Inaba
Trembling leaf…..Danielle Allen
Ando…..Bert Kwouk
Priest…..Danid Bannerman
Blofeld…..Ronald Herdman
Irma…..Maxine Audley
Molony…..Michale Turner
Kono…..Mark Straker
Tracey…..Emma Gregory
Mariko…..Tara Dominick

And, the unabridged audiobook (as narrated by Simon Vance) is available over at Blackstone Audio.

BLACKSTONE AUDIO - You Only Live Twice by Ian FlemingYou Only Live Twice
By Ian Fleming; Read by Simon Vance
6 CDs or 1 MP3-CD – Approx. 6.8 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2001
ISBN: 9781433261350 (cd), 9781433290398 (mp3-cd)
Bond, a shattered man after the death of his wife at the hands of Ernst Stavro Blofeld, has gone to pieces as an agent, endangering himself and his fellow operatives. M, unwilling to accept the loss of one of his best men, sends 007 to Japan for one last, near-impossible mission. But Japan proves to be Bond’s downfall, leading him to a mysterious residence known as the “Castle of Death,” where he encounters an old enemy revitalized. All the omens suggest that this is the end for the British agent and, for once, Bond himself seems unable to disagree…

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #067

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #067 – Scott and Jesse talk to Dan Carlin, of the Hardcore History and Common Sense podcasts!

Talked about on today’s show:
Hardcore History, Common Sense, the Rashomon effect, Gilligan’s Island, Fox News, MSNBC, ABC, defensive reporting, nuance vs. talking points, BBC, NPR, PBS, Wikileaks, Common Sense Show #179 – GenX Journalism, the Martian political position, comics, What If…, Niall Ferguson, “counterfactual history“, “how different would voting be if there were no money impacting the political system at all?”, the toothless United Nations, the Canadian political system vs. the U.S. political system, the Congress Of Vienna, WWI, WWII, the Napoleonic Wars, the Rwandan Genocide, the Korean War, the Gaza flotilla incident, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iraq War, unilateral action, Panama, NATO, imagine if the United Nations wasn’t toothless, Wikileaks’ “Collateral Murder” video, Grenada, a “muscular” foreign policy, “air on the side of reality”, Julian Assange, unreleased Abu Ghraib prison video, podcasting, “how cool is it to have an international program?”, Pierre Trudeau, “we live in reaction to you”, U.S. foreign policy, Barack Obama, first contact in Science Fiction, first contact in history, Despoilers Of The Golden Empire by Randall Garrett, Fransisco Pissaro, United States expedition to Korea, “Korea is a dagger, in the hand of China, pointed at the heart of Japan”, Globalization Unto Death, “the hermit kingdom”, Magellan expedition, Steppe Stories, an island off the coast of India, Commodore Perry‘s expedition to Japan, Sid Meier’s Civilization, Civilization (board game), Sparta, the freedom of podcasting.

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #051 – TOPIC: THE YELLOW PERIL

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #051 – Jesse and Scott are joined by Luke Burrage and Professor Eric S. Rabkin to discuss THE YELLOW PERIL.

Talked about on today’s show:
The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu by Sax Rohmer (aka The Mysterious Dr. Fu-Manchu) – available via Tantor Media, fix-up novel, hypnosis, Sherlock Holmes, the yellow peril incarnate, the yellow peril as the hordes of asia, the Chinese Exclusion Act (USA), Chinese Immigration Act, 1923 (Canada), Tamerlane (the scourge of god), The Yellow Peril by M.P. Shiel, The Purple Cloud by M.P. Shiel, racism, WWI, colonialism, Burma, Thuggees, Boxer Rebellion, genius, The Talons Of Weng Chiang, if you read it as Fu-Manchu being the hero you may like the story more, mad scientist, Faust, Paradise Lost by John Milton, Robur-Le-Conquérant by Jules Verne (aka Robur-The-Conqueror aka The Clipper of the Clouds), The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells, The White Man’s Burden by Rudyard Kipling, colonialism, The Invisible Man, the other colored other, The League Of Extraordinary Gentleman by Alan Moore, Hawley Griffin (The Invisible Man), Allan Quatermain, Captain Nemo, Dr. Henry Jekyll/Mr. Edward Hyde, Mina Murray (from Dracula by Bram Stoker), English 418/549: GRAPHIC NARRATIVE (Winter 2010), The Invisible Man shows I and II, If I Ran The Zoo by Dr. Seuss, Jonah And The Whale, Suess’ anti-Japanese propaganda during WWII, Japanese internment during WWII in USA and Canada, Aryan, India, Nazi Germany, The Thule Society, Sri Lanka, racial stereotypes, Marco Polo, Kubla Khan by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, gender and skin color, blondness, Karamaneh (the love interest in The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu), femme fatale, Black Widow (1987), miscegenation, the Chinese hordes vs. the insidious Japanese, War With The Newts by Karel Čapek, Japan, LibriVox.org, Sixth Column by Robert A. Heinlein, beauty as goodness (in fairy tales), King Kong, Last And First Men by Olaf Stapledon, Star Maker, The Iliad by Homer, The Old Testament, The Science Fiction Hall Of Fame edited by Robert Silverberg, Arena by Fredric Brown, Plato, the red scare, Jack London, The Lathe Of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin, Arslan by M.J. Engh, Chung Kuo by David Windgrove, selective memory, polarized memory, Middlemarch by George Eliot, Encounter With Tiber by Buzz Aldrin and John Barnes, China Mountain Zhang by Maureen F. McHugh, Superfusion: How China and America Became One Economy and Why the World’s Prosperity Depends on It by Zachary Karabell, Firefly, Limehouse, London, Detroit, The Man In The High Castle by Philip K. Dick |READ OUR REVIEW|, alternate history, SS-GB by Len Deighton, Fatherland by Robert Harris, Gorky Park, North Korea, the North Korea embassy in East Berlin.

The Yellow Peril

The Fiendish Plot Of Fu-Manchu (Thanks Gregg!):

Posted by Jesse Willis

A plethora of pleasures from BBC7

OnlineAudio

BBC 7's The 7th DimensionThe next will be one of the busiest weeks ever heard on BBC7, with dramatizations and readings galore! Thankfully, all will be available through the BBC7 ‘listen again’ service. There are two novels by John Wyndham, a vintage Sherlock Holmes vs. vampire story (there have been severals by many hands over the years) as well as a rebroadcast of a popular new original drama (fans of which will be pleased to hear that a second series is set to air in early 2008)…

Undone
By Ben Moor; Performed by a full cast
5 Broadcast (5 Episodes) – [RADIO DRAMA]
Broadcaster: BBC7 / The 7th Dimension
Broadcast: Sundays at 6pm and midnight (for 5 weeks)
Edna Turner has just moved to London to work on a listings magazine and is naturally excited. Her boss is the friendly Carlo and while her bedsit isn’t exactly a palace, she gets down to work. An encounter at a music club with the strange Tankerton Slopes leads her to travel to the bizarre parallel city of “Undone” and a mission to send radical TV developer Marlboro Fagpacket back home. Read more about Undone on Ben Moor’s site.

A “gripping dramatisation by John Constable”, first broadcast in 1998 airs this Saturday…

Radio Drama - BBC7 - ChockyChocky
Based on the novel by John Wyndham; Performed by a full cast
1 Broadcast – 90 Minutes [RADIO DRAMA]
Broadcaster: BBC7
Broadcast: Saturday @ 12pm (rerun @ 1am) UK Time
Many children have imaginary friends but one father becomes rather concerned that his son, Matthew, is a bit old to have one. His concerns deepen as his son becomes increasingly distressed and blames it on arguments with this unseen companion. As the story unfolds, it becomes clear that the friend is far from imaginary, but is an alien consciousness residing inside Matthew’s mind—a fact that is of intense interest to shadowy government forces.

First broadcast on Saturday Night Theatre back in 1981…

Sherlock Holmes vs. Dracula (AKA The Case of the Sanguinary Count)
Based on a novel by Loren D. Estleman; Performed by a full cast
1 Broadcast – [RADIO DRAMA]
Broadcaster: BBC7
Broadcast: Sunday at 10am and 8pm
Doctor Watson’s account of how the great detective Sherlock Holmes battled the evil forces of Count Dracula.

A “chilling” 1982 production that first aired on BBC Radio World Service…

Radio Drama - BBC7 - The Midwich CuckoosThe Midwich Cuckoos
Based on the novel by John Wyndham; Performed by a full cast
3 Parts – [RADIO DRAMA]
Broadcaster: BBC7 / The 7th Dimension
Broadcast: Wednesday – Friday at 6pm and midnight
Another alien impregnation theme – but this is where it all started – a sleepy English village may be the birthplace for the end of the world.

A season of four tales from around the world exploring the weird and the wonderful, first broadcast as a special commission on BBC 7 earlier this year…

Fantastic Tales – Hell Screen
By Ryunosuke Akutagawa; Read by Togo Igawa
2 Parts – [UNABRIDGED?]
Broadcaster: BBC7 / The 7th Dimension
Broadcast: Monday – Tuesday at 6.30pm and 12.30am
A horror story set in medieval Japan in which a powerful Lord clashes with an arrogant painter, leading to tragedy.

Fantastic Tales – Alarm Clock On The Night Table
By Zoran Zivkovic; Read by Anna Massey
1 Broadcast – [UNABRIDGED?]
Broadcaster: BBC7 / The 7th Dimension
Broadcast: Wednesday at 6.30pm and 12.30am
An unusual occurrence forces an elderly woman to confront a tragedy from her past.

Fantastic Tales – The White People
By Arthur Machen; Read by Ioan Meredith and Louise Collins
1 Broadcast – [UNABRIDGED?]
Broadcaster: BBC7 / The 7th Dimension
Broadcast: Thursday at 6.30pm and 12.30am
An intriguing tale which explores the nature of good and evil and the origins of sin.

Fantastic Tales – Delhi
By Vandana Singh; Read by Shiv Grewal
1 Broadcast – [UNABRIDGED?]
Broadcaster: BBC7 / The 7th Dimension
Broadcast: Friday at 6.30pm and 12.30am
A man living in present-day Delhi is haunted by visions of the city as it was in the past and how it will be in the future.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Review of The Man In The High Castle by Philip K. Dick

SFFaudio Review

The Man In The High Castle
By Philip K. Dick; Read by George Guidall
7 Cassettes – 9.75 hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Recorded Books
Date Published: 1997
Themes: Science Fiction / Alternate History / World War II / Holocaust / Japan / Nazi Germany

World War II is over and to the victors go the spoils; Germany and Japan divide the world and the United States into East and West occupied zones. Alternate reality? Alternate history? Those are sheer fantasy, what if the Allies had won the war? Who would have been able to stop Stalin? Idle daydreaming, and Frank Frink can’t afford that, as one of the few surving Jews in North America and the world he’s got to concentrate to stay alive…

Set in an alternate history (and taking place in 1962 when Dick wrote the book), The Man in the High Castle is multiple viewpoint. There is: Mr. Tagomi, a collector of all things antique and American. Juliana Frink, seperated from her husband. She’s in Colorado on the border between the Nazis in the East and the Japanese in the West. Her husband Frank Frink, a shop owner and dealer in antiques, lives apart from his wife in occupied San Francisco serving the ruling Japanese. And all three of them have their fate intertwined with an officially banned underground novel entitled “The Grasshopper Lies Heavy” which paints a picture of a world where the Allies won WWII.

The Man in the High Castle won the Science Fiction Hugo Award for best novel in 1962. It is one of the few great Philip K. Dick novels still unfilmed and so it will come as a great introduction to a new reader. Throughout the novel the I, Ching and its cryptic “wisdom” is used to push the plot along. This ingenious device is of further interest because Dick claimed that he himself used the I, Ching whenever it was used in the novel and let it take the novel wherever the results led it, in essence plotting the book as a result of the I, Ching’s advice. Superstar narrator George Guidall with his broad range and depth of voice is the perfect choice for this deeply complex novel. Oh and of course I can’t forget to mention the fantastic twist ending which will definitely… shall I say…change your persective? A profound SF experience that will blow your mind.