The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #184 – Jesse, Tamahome, Jenny, talk about the RECENT ARRIVALS in audiobooks.

Talked about on today’s show:
Is it new releases or recent arrivals?, Jenny’s pretty color-coded list, The Year’s Top Short SF Novels 2 edited by Allan Kaster, Angel of Europa by Allen M. Steele (is one of them), “it’s basic science fiction”, how to pronounce Mary Robinette KowalThe Twelve (Passage #2) by Justin Cronin is literary vampire fiction, Cloud AtlasThe Walking Dead: The Road to Woodbury by Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga, “I’m not going to end this story”, “our Scott?”, In the Tall Grass by Stephen King and Joe Hill, read by Stephen Lang, more manly than Stephan Rudnicki?, |READ OUR REVIEW|, “Stephen King has more pull”, Lucifer’s Hammer by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle is epic science fiction (24 hours), one of Luke’s favorites, (it’s post The Mote in God’s Eye actually), it was a best-seller, Seven Wonders by Adam Christopher, “I follow writers”, Kirkman’s Invincible comic, Breakdown by Katherine Amt Hanna, sounds like Death of Grass, which has a new BBC audiodrama, Embedded by Dan Abnett, he writes Warhammer 40K books, The Diamond Age and Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson, “I have both those feelings”, “Luke didn’t like it but everyone else did”, many Mongoliad disks, Jonathan Davis likes us, Tales From the Fire Zone by Jonathan Maberry, Julie’s review of Maberry’s first Joe Ledger audiobooks, “she liked them against her will”, Cold Days by Jim Butcher, James Marsters is back narrating, When We Have Wings by Claire Corbett, very Australian accent, “vampires for Christians”, Mockingbird by Chuck Wendig, a female Stephen King character, An Apple for the Creature is monsters in school, Ashes of Honor by Seanan McGuire, performed by Mary Robinette Kowal, Jesse sees the future, Nightwatch by Sergei Lukyanenko, it’s not in Russian, (Luke wasn’t thrilled), Death Warmed Over by Kevin J. Anderson, zombie p.i., a big stack of Philip K. Dick, The Man Who Japed, The Simulacra, The Crack In Space, Total Recall (We Can Remember It For You Wholesale), We Can Build You, Solar Lottery, The World Jones Made, minimalist covers, Gone by Randy Wayne White, chick that kicks ass, A Murder of Quality and Call For The Dead by John Le Carre, Jesse likes the narrator Michael Jayston, This is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz, |READ OUR REVIEW|, Jenny liked his podcast appearance, Jenny loved Diaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Waging Heavy Peace by Neil Young, read by Keith Carradine who was in the movie Southern ComfortDream More by Dolly Parton, aphorisms at the end, Total Recall (autobiography) by Arnold Schwarzenegger, “how many pushups did he get for that?”, Pumping Iron documentary, Conan The Barbarian movie

lucufer's hammer cover

Posted by Tamahome

Junot Díaz featured in two podcasts

SFFaudio Online Audio

With the recent release of This is How You Lose her, Junot Díaz has been on my mind!  Two of my favorite podcasts recently featured interviews with him, from very different perspectives.

KCRW Bookworm

KCRW Bookworm
9/17/12 episode: Junot Díaz: This is How You Lose Her
Interview by Michael Silverblatt

Download |MP3|

Junot discusses the success in his career, how being a reader impacted his writing, and then they discuss specific moments from the stories.  Look for great moments of insight about internal resistance, honesty, and self-censorship in writing.

I went back and listened to the bits about how important it is to be a reader several times.

“My career as a writer … began far earlier with my career as a reader. I think I’ve learned everything I needed to know from my reading. … My reading backs me up in ways my writing doesn’t.”

Geeks Guide to the Galaxy

Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy
Episode 70: Junot Díaz
Interview by David Barr Kirtley

Download |MP3|

This episode discusses more of the author’s connection to the world of science fiction than the short stories themselves.  Included is a discussion of whether or not the recent New Yorker Science Fiction issue will change the world, why science fiction is more relevant to Dominicans than any other form of literature, and his own history in trying to write post-apocalyptic literature.  I was ecstatic to hear that his next novel will be post-apocalyptic!

He also discusses Caribbean science fiction and fantasy authors, mentioning Tobias Buckell and Nalo Hopkinson in particular.  He also recommends N.K. Jemisin as another “diaspora” writer worthy of reading.

Posted by Jenny Colvin

Review of This is How You Lose Her by Junot Díaz

SFFaudio Review

This Is How You Lose HerThis is How You Lose Her
By Junot Díaz; Read by Junot Díaz
5 hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Published: 2012
ISBN: 9781611761108
Themes: / short stories / relationships / childhood / immigrant experience /

Publisher summary:

On a beach in the
Dominican Republic, a doomed relationship flounders. In the heat of a
hospital laundry room in New Jersey, a woman does her lover’s washing
and thinks about his wife. In Boston, a man buys his love child, his
only son, a first baseball bat and glove. At the heart of these stories
is the irrepressible, irresistible Yunior, a young hardhead whose
longing for love is equaled only by his recklessness–and by the
extraordinary women he loves and loses: artistic Alma; the aging Miss
Lora; Magdalena, who thinks all Dominican men are cheaters; and the love
of his life, whose heartbreak ultimately becomes his own. In prose that
is endlessly energetic, inventive, tender, and funny, the stories in
This Is How You Lose Her lay bare the infinite longing and inevitable
weakness of the human heart. They remind us that passion always triumphs
over experience, and that “the half-life of love is forever.”

Junot Díaz’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, is one of my favorite books, featuring the best geeky character I have ever come across in fiction.  Since Díaz is most often talked about in literary circles and not science fiction and fantasy, you may be unfamiliar with his work, but this is your warning that he is coming into our arena!  He was included in the recent (and only) science fiction issue of the New Yorker, and is currently working on a post-apocalyptic novel.

What I loved about The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is present in these stories, which all jump off of Yunior, one of the characters in the novel.  They are all read by the author, which really brings them to life.  At five discs, this is a quick but enjoyable listen.  I went back and listened to a few more than once.

More than anything, it is the writing that draws me in.  The way Díaz captures how people think about relationships, about sex, and interact with and treat each other rings true; the characters that morph between the Dominican Republic and the USA, struggling to fit in (and deal with snow, haha) are flawed in honest ways.  There is not any explicit reference to geekdom like there was in Oscar Wao, but readers who know the character of Yunior from the novel will know more about his background.

A few quotations from the stories:

from Nilda

“The newest girl’s called Samantha and she’s a problem. She’s dark and heavy-browed and has a mouth like unswept glass – when you least expect it, she cuts you.”

from Flaca

“‘It wasn’t supposed to get serious between us. I can’t see us getting married or nothing.’|
And you nodded your head and said you understood. And then, we fucked, so we could pretend that nothing hurtful had just happened.”

“Do you remember? When the fights seemed to go on and on, and always ended with us in bed, tearing at each other like maybe that could change everything.”

Posted by Jenny Colvin