BBC Radio 4: On The Beach by Nevil Shute dramatized

SFFaudio Online Audio

BBC Radio 4Roy of the U.K. writes in to say there’s a “Classic Serial” on BBC Radio 4 that is worthy of our attention. It’s a BBC dramatisation of this recently mentioned Nevil Shute novel: On The Beach

A 1957 novel set in the then future 1963. A nuclear conflict has devastated the northern hemisphere, polluting the atmosphere with radioactive fallout and killing all animal life. While the nuclear bombs were confined to the northern hemisphere, global air currents are slowly carrying the fallout to the southern hemisphere. The only part of the planet still habitable is the far south of the globe, specifically Australia and New Zealand, South Africa, and the southern parts of South America, although all of these areas are slowly succumbing to radiation poisoning as the fallout continues to circulate southwards!

BBC Radio 4 Radio Drama - On The Beach based on the novel by Nevil ShuteOn The Beach
Based on the novel by Nevil Shute; performed by a full cast
2 Parts – Approx. 2 Hours [RADIO DRAMA]
Broadcaster: BBC Radio 4 / Classic Serial
Broadcast: Sunday Nov. 2nd 2008 & Sunday Nov. 9th 2008 @ 15:00-16:00

These will each be repeated once at 21:00-22:00 on the following Saturdays.

And, Roy tells us to stick around for the “Bookclub programme” that immediately follows the first broadcast of Part 1 as it features Fay Weldon discussing her 1989 novel The Cloning Of Joanna May. That’s later repeated the following Thursday at 16:00 (30 minutes).

Thanks Roy!

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #008


The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #008 – here there be podcasts – we’ve adorned ourselves in too much gold, now we can’t move! So join us on our 8th show, where we’re always etymologically correct.

Scott: Oh ya right. I just forgot something man. Uh, before we dock, I think we ought to discuss the bonus situation.

Jesse: Right.

Scott: We think… we think we deserve full shares.

Jesse: Right.

Scott: Pass the cornbread.

Topics discussed include:, METAtropolis, Jay Lake, John Scalzi, Elizabeth Bear, Tobias Buckell, Karl Schroeder, Mr. Spaceship, Philip K. Dick, Stefan Rudnicki, Wonder Audio, Anne McCaffrey, The Ship Who Sang, Michael Hogan, Battlestar Galactica, 18th Century Spain, Cascadia (Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and sometimes Idaho), Detroit, “Turking”, The Turk (the chess playing automaton), alternative economy, Kandyse McClure, infodump, shared world, Brandon Sanderson, hard fantasy, Elantris, Larry Niven, The Magic Goes Away, manna, unicorns, dragons, Dungeons & Dragons, Mistborn, Robert Jordan, The Wheel Of Time, Writing Excuses Podcast, Howard Tayler,, Dan Wells, The Dark Knight, Aural Noir, The New Adventures Of Mike Hammer, Stacy Keach, Mike Hammer, Full Cast Audio, Red Planet, Robert A. Heinlein, Bruce Coville, Mars, Heinlein’s Future History sequence, the Red Planet TV miniseries, Princess Academy, Shannon Hale, Blackstone Audio, The Collected Stories Of Philip K. Dick Volume 1, and Volume 2, Inferno by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle, David Farland, Runelords, Collected Public Domain Works Of H.P. Lovecraft,, October, Ray Bradbury, “Autumn ennui”, AUTHOR PAGES, LEIGH BRACKETT, FREDERIC BROWN, JAMES PATRICK KELLY, BBC7,, Beam Me Up Podcast, MACK REYNOLDS, Robert Sheckley, Religulous, Constantine’s Sword, The Ultimate Encyclopedia Of Science Fiction: The Definitive illustrated Guide edited by David Pringle, space opera, planetary romance, Julie D., Forgotten Classics podcast, The Wonder Stick, time travel, alien intrusions, metal powers, Slan, The Demolished Man, comedic SF, aliens, artificial intelligence, “cosmic collisions”, Deep Impact, cyborgs, dinosaurs, the dying Earth, Gene Wolfe, elixir of life, immortality, Roger Zelazny, Robert Silverberg, genetic engineering, nuclear war, overpopulation, parallel worlds, robots, androids, Joanna Russ, Ben Bova, space travel, suspended animation, teleportation, transcendence = the Singularity ?, Childhood’s End, Arthur C. Clarke, religion, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Monica Hughes, Crisis On Conshelf Ten, Hard SF, cyberpunk, psychology, New Wave, lost races, military SF, science fantasy, shared worlds, steampunk.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Review of Dr. Bloodmoney by Philip K. Dick

SFFaudio Review

dr_bloodmoney150.jpgDr. Bloodmoney, or How We Got Along After the Bomb
By Philip K. Dick; Read by Tom Weiner
7 CD – 8.5 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: 2008
ISBN: 9781433245503
Themes: / Science Fiction / Telepathy / Post Apocalypse / Nuclear War / Satellites / Psychokinesis / California /

Philip Dick’s post-nuclear-holocaust masterpiece presents a mesmerizing vision of a world transformed, where technology has reverted back to the nineteenth century, animals have developed speech and language, and humans must deal with both physical mutations and the psychological repercussions of the disaster they have caused. The book is filled with a host of Dick’s most memorable characters: Hoppy Harrington, a deformed mutant with telekinetic powers; Walt Dangerfield, a selfless disc jockey stranded in a satellite circling the globe; Dr. Bluthgeld, the megalomaniac physicist largely responsible for the decimated state of the world; and Stuart McConchie and Bonnie Keller, two unremarkable people bent the survival of goodness in a world devastated by evil. Epic and alluring, Dr. Bloodmoney brilliantly depicts Dick’s undying hope in humanity.

The subtitle, of Dr. Bloodmoney is or How We Got Along After the Bomb, the idea for it came from the original publisher (ACE Books) who wanted to capitalize on the subtitle of the movie Dr. Strangelove. I can almost see it too. For me, this wasn’t Philip K. dick’s best novel. But, if you liked his best novel, you’ll like this one. I did. The thing is, no matter which one of Dick’s novels is your favourite, Doctor Bloodmoney will remind you of it – if only for the author’s voice. Dick, more than with any other emotion, writes with sympathy. You feel for his characters, their petty goals, their yearnings, their little prejudices. The plot on this one is almost unimportant, it’s also hard to sum up in a sentence, but I’ll try: A radio repairman with no limbs (due to phocomelia) has superpowers, which he uses to predict/cause WWIII, then becomes ultra-powerful as a big fish in a small pond.

The rule about writing what you know is more difficult in Science Fiction. Nobody’s been to Mars yet. Nobody has met an alien. But you can clearly see what Dick knows showing up on the pages of his SF novels. When he wrote Dr. Bloodmoney he was really into Jungian and Freudian analysis, he was reading Of Human Bondage and was probably an avid mushroom picker. The plot doesn’t really matter as this is a situation with a set of Dickian characters. What stands out, what will remain in my memory are the scenes, characters interacting with each other and themselves. Thinking their thoughts, acting their acts. When we meet the title character, Bruno Bluthgeld, for the second time later in the book, (he’s not the star), he’s showing off his talking sheep dog to a little girl. She asks to hear the dog speak. It does, and the tears came to my eyes. When Stuart McConchie goes into San Fransisco he parks his horse only to come back and find it eaten by the city’s underclass. It really is all there: The salesmen, the repairmen, the cheating wives, the murderous children and the sympathetic animals. Everything we expect from a Dick tale.

Blackstone Audio narrator Tom Weiner is fast becoming a new favourite. His natural timbre is basso but he can do a lot with it. Performance is the key, everybody gets a voice of their own. In this novel that’s especially necessary as there are more than a dozen characters sharing the plot and dialogue. Blackstone has more Dick headed to audiobook too. The Man In The High Castle has already been released. Ubik is winging it’s way to us right now and Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said, Valis, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch should be released over the next few months. We are living in very Dickian times my friends.

Posted by Jesse Willis