The SFFaudio Podcast #774 – READALONG: Farnham’s Freehold by Robert A. Heinlein

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction
The SFFaudio PodcastJesse, Paul Weimer, Maissa Bessada, Trish E. Matson, and Jonathan Weichsel talk about Farnham’s Freehold by Robert A. Heinlein

Talked about on today’s show:
unmuted, you’ve probably read my books, a wonderful novel from July 1964, Worlds Of If, very proud of himself, as a teenager, screenshotted, omigod, adding a new element to the story, explore this idea in the most horrible way, the Baen paperback, spoiler on the cover, the last page of the book is on the cover, what’s going on here, who wrote this, the title gives away the ending, what we now call preppers, a newspaper article, a freeholder, inspired by Heinlein, Heinlein’s changing the world, magazines about how to survive a zombie apocalypse, wanting the Walking Dead to be real, Freedom Is A Lonely Thing, what the book’s about, about being a slave, an oxymoron, if you hold something it is not free, held by your daughter/wife, mini biography of Alan E. Nourse, the dedicee, Friday was partially dedicated to the wife, both Navy men, who’s the main Heinlein in this book, former Seabee, decided to retire, 2,000 people under him, a helluva book, the scene where they’re outside and Ponce’s airplane shows up, Duke is going to live in a cave with his mother, some transition scenes, before and ponce and after ponce, three books, surviving a nuclear apocalypse, pioneering, life under Ponce, Karl K. Gallagher, is a pretelling of Starship Troopers, a partial retelling of Tunnel In The Sky, colonizing planets, he’s a YA character, The Door Into Summer, same thing happens, they steal a car, one of the cars is missing, Ponce’s world is also stuff we’ve seen in By His Bootstraps, the most extraordinary thing about this book is it’s set in 1964, there isn’t another novel where it doesn’t start in the future, such an interesting book, does an alternate history count?, Job: A Comedy Of Justice, a Heinlein break/cleanse, Glory Road, fixate on the costumes, such a distaste in your, the long pork, stick with chicken, Farah Mendlesohn’s book, her opinion, off the rails, cannibalistic, laughing so hard, tears streaming down cheeks, so weird, reread, the weakness of this book is the beginning half, skipped everything until the pregnancy reveals, character stuff, well done characters, not likeable, Jesse knows all their names, Barbara and Karen are interchangeable, we know Duke way too well, how real they are, Grace the alcoholic in denial, has her son castrated, I hate this book, if I was gonna stop, off the rails, you’re supposed to hate them, why am I reading this?, how do you fix this book?, change the POV from Hugh, straight out of Tunnel Of The Sky, as soon as Ponce shows up, tell it from Joe’s point of view, Joe talking to Hugh, Joe is sticking it to Hugh, Hugh is not a racist jerk, Karen, set in 1964, legacy racism, present day racism, we gotta stop this, there are still racists, that little joke was there to seed us for the final revelation, two different covers, redid the cover, that doesn’t solve the problem, there is no way to fix this book with another narrator’s point of view, what makes the book great, you wanna hate a racist, if you hate them so much, like Grace, insipid, we’re speculating, would she have cared?, a caricature, the fucking Karen, you fucking idiot Heinlein, he talks about taboo subjects, cannibalism, incest, horrible arguments, repopulate the planet, we don’t need to do incest, muddle through, dad I always found you handsome, what a horrible man, he was right to bring it up, a terrible movie, Noah (2014), pregnant because of Methuselah, Noah’s wife, we’ve increased out gene-pool, and the cat’s pregnant, and there’s a cow and a calf, he’s piling it up, decrease our displeasure, much more obviously as a Jonathan Swift, the grossness has an appeal, he’s an asshole, he made mistakes, authoritarian, sexist?, never chattered when her man wanted her to be quiet, he knows that he is wrong, he never does that, we think Duke is worse than Hugh, when Ponce shows up we shouldn’t have knuckled under, plot armour, or the book continued, muddle through and hopefully plot armour will save you, the first half of the book is a mirror to the second half of the book, as soon as the bombs go off you’re fired, we’re all going to be equal with no employer employee relationship, even Barbara and Karen, an equal prospect to Duke, strike a spark, everybody thinks Hugh’s sexy, my father figure, my best friend’s dad, throwing over his wife for a younger woman, acting irrationally, unreasonably, a history of alcoholism, solve their problems by drinking, decide the way they think it should be, rarely seen in literature, that was all she was, consumed by alcoholism, Hugh tells her story, shacked up with me, tarpaper roof, decadent and fussy, she was admirable at one point, turned to pot, saved all humanity, something Heinlein did himself, built a bombshelter, that’s not bad, female characters, why do women have to become fat and useless, nothing, zero, a Hugh and Ponce book, Kitty, Dr. Livingstone, cannibalism, incest, kittens, infuriating, in here twice, the other hidden theme, transgender stuff a couple of times, pleasant surprises, Doc thinks he is a boy cat, impressive actually, something in Ponce’s world, that idea, 1964 and farming, interesting, reconstruct the world with a few book, books are money, I kill you my son, the mirror universe of the future, including copyright, every kind of Heinlein theme you could want, it’s not capitalism, a funhouse mirror view of capitalism and the United States, an international planetary black supremacist, we should hate it, he’s created a funhouse mirror of American society in 1964 and hate it, wow it’s in the future, Joe is our reverse character, just his skincolour, every single character has an attitude that could be “I got mine”, his idea to get the cards, he’s a negro until he pulls a gun on you, it’s my cave, my machine gun, I know that this system is wrong, I’m in charge, enlightened Greek dictator of a city state, gonna send you back in time for fun, a parallel scene, stacking the deck 100%, to force the plot to accept the time travel bit, as a teenager, the castration reveal, shocked, we knew that it was coming, almost everybody has been tempered, thumbs taken off, what’s happening to all the sluts?, almost exclusively, some European shows up with a ship, you’re a slave now, slave bosses, I went to an island in the South Pacific, a blackbirding island, I stopped telling the story, slavery is wrong no matter what race does it for whatever reasons, we miss it, daddy I always wanted to have sex with you, I’m a sexpot, the little speech at the end, a bait and switch, have your balls cut off and serve me, the same bait and switch, structured very similarly, an annoying habit of making you infuriated, there’s so much to say, hated it less the second time through, a lot more nuanced, efforts at nuance, conflated Barbara and Karen, somewhat relieved, exploration of who should be on top, sacrificing your servants, runaways in the mountains, we are all free to walk our appointed paths, honestly convinced of his own benevolence, a cheap clincher, as a possibility, Christine Jorgensen was literally mentioned in one of the letters, any time travel story where one character is two character it’s incest, broaden our horizons, one character talking to himself all day, one of the letters, handwritten, an literary gabfest, let’s consider Edgar Allen Poe, Poe was the best writer to read or re-read, he could never be milked dry in one reading, the case of the Purloined Letter, when you consider the very subtle, how about Mark Twain next, a coded message to her, spelled correctly, if you can read this answer the same way period, he’s doing what he’s telling us what he’s doing, he’s telling us to read this book that way, consider the name of the cat, descendants of Africans, cannibalism is a planetary thing, around here any more much, serial killers, every Catholic is a cannibal, take in the divine, it’s a metaphor as well as an actual cultural practice, origins of capitalism, eating people’s lives up, different slave mentality works, as a manager of a factory, the same argument slave owners made to their slaves, in that light, it scares us more than it scares Heinlein, Heinlein is more afraid of Khrushchev actually unleashing hell, capital resources, in our timeline, it’s not a hearing aid, it bugs his wife, a very masterful book, he misjudged his audience, more sophisticated, we’re all teenagers when we read it, who’s there to root for, not a sporting event, trying to be satiryical, it’s not funny, a willing sex slave, that’s what all women become, stepping into the room and stepping on his dick, why do you do this to us, you need to have a reason to read, what outrageous thing will Heinlein say next is a reason to read, a tweet storm about Heinlein, memories of this book, To Sail Beyond The Sunset, a funhouse mirror in Ponce’s world, he’s trying to do something, he’s succeeded, we balk at the price and think the caller is an asshole, Karen’s sexing up her dad, I’m just like a black mammy, why did she do that?, she’s racist, the most Heinlein character, you try going through Alabama as a blackman, I gotta be modest here, but it’s not going to stop me, if we didn’t have this book we couldn’t hate Heinlein like we do, I’m the Karen now, an indictment of humanity, H.G. Wells, Griffin in The Invisible Man, the land lady, the bum, the indictment of the book, Prendick, Moreau, The Island Of Doctor Moreau, root for Henlein’s YA characters, Hugh is the least shitty character, Heinlein’s brinksmanship, no way to solve family problems, lifeboat rules, I have a gun to back it up, I read a book, books are valuable, you have to agree with me, you’re dead, bridge, so much bridge talk, contract bridge, games, Sixth Column, playing with a ruler, what is that chess move, what is that bridge move, such a stupid game, an old lady game, world champion bridge player, stay at home mom, will you teach me how to play bridge, my amazing game, a stratum of Americans, social function, aunts, progressive rummy, mahjong, by the book, not interesting to read about, so 1964, Omar Sharif, why is the guy from that movie, a second life, columns on bridge, it’s gone, a social activity, watch people stream, online games, people who play with their kids online, the time has passed, they don’t know what bridge is, the mirror of Hugh and his life, Anne and Alan E. Nourse, the kind of conversations that happen at the card table, hearts, why do you have a social game, sitting around and having a conversation, why do we have to have a book to talk about to have a conversation, it gives shape and excuse to it, it’s about marriage, as usual, one of the richest books, what is freedom, the American Revolution, his target is racism, slavery, American history, serious stumbling blocks by Heinlein being horribly Heinlein, almost certainly a parallel or an answer to Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur’s Court, that scene is lifted, a poem: The Congo by Vachel Lindsay, why is it like this, The Golden Faced People, The Crisis, NAACP, a rich white man publishing a story in a black magazine, from a different period of time, equality anti-racist guy, pushing peoples buttons, The Golden-Faced People: A Story Of Chinese Conquest Of America, the trouble with the laundryman, it’s Lincoln’s birthday, 2805, the United States taken over by the Chinese, white people were the slaves until very recently, Lin-Koln, a backwoodsman who freed the slaves, a fun-house mirror of the United States in 1914, he sounds racist but is anti-racist, what’s so extraordinary about this book, semi-forgive, gritty and real, the incest problem, has happened around the world a lot, soccer teams crashed in the Andes, ritualistic, ancestors or enemies, probably not a healthy practice, kings of Hawaii, marrying their sisters, Cleopatra, Pharaohs, royal families of Europe, first cousin, for political purposes, for satirical purposes, sex objects, the drug aspect, religion is missing, two ways of reading this, also science fiction, what happiness is made out of, Seconal, alcohol, their drugs are better (because they’re insidious), calms people down, as a punishment, as a control, buck, slut, we become almost immune to it, wench, literally just means girl, the context, tavern wenches, in our world that’s how its used, a much longer book just set in that world, so interesting, the chosen women are so oppressed we never meet them, we meet the sluts, who would want to live with life, a breaking up of the atomic family, his first family is dead, the family atomic unit, he presents that world so thoroughly, how white women were thought of traditionally in the south, To Kill A Mockingbird, we’re in the household, walled up in the harem, the sluts’ quarters, who Ponce chooses, she’s working against her husband, he’s cuckolding Hugh, as a plot device, consider the nephew, they cry, sexist as hell society, a masculine controlled society, inheritance goes through the nephew, Mentok is quite a good character, interesting, a cabin in the woods, a vacation estate, run off my feet at all times, you will really how things are, so tantalizing, so different from ours, 2000 years pass, lights that turn on, social stuff, line marriage, so different and so good, middle manager, despises the slaves, resents the chosen, genetics racism thing, some blood in him, improve the stock, their own eugenics system, everybody knew there were men somewhere in the stars, set in the same universe, Time For The Stars, a checklist, twins, The Rolling Stones, how was Heinlein raised, his books not his biography, a private man for a public man, in New York at that time, Horace Gold’s poker game, the who’s who of science fiction, C.M. Kornbluth, Fredrick Pohl, a couples thing, another childless couple, food and drink, LBJ, a silver star, man’s magazine, congressperson in the reserves, American bomber tour, he didn’t do anything but survived and came back with a silver star, Duke is Lyndon B. Johnson, publicly Mr. Civil Rights, privately Mr. Racist, the situation was untenable, Lincoln’s story is similar, very liberal, very racist, he’s a momma’s boy, neglected by his father, under Grace’s influence, prejudiced, horny for dad, also racist, she thinks it’s cute, DSM, extremely un-PC, what causes homosexuality, absent father, domineering mother, opportunities with women, a closeted homosexual, in the abstract, just finished law school, he has his own apartment, living on his own, prove it, as distinctly as Trish, we agreed to live as friends, you’re not longer my son, your opinions are welcome, his wife is a Lush, take the alcohol out of her hands, 3rd we’re libertarians, coming from a history of alcoholism, very good, it’s incredible, his personal life, he aint gonna never stop talking about his cats, mom’s a total Grace, watch out for the scissors bub, hardcore, COVID is fake, my son Jeffrey gets all the vaccines, I need to believe that it’s true, what alcohol does to people, call a doctor, there’s no fucking doctors, in the intervening 20 years, did you think Karen was going to die?, structurally, this baby’s gonna die, forgot for a second, so easy, when Ponce tells Hugh, we went and dug up your daughter, I brought a priest, the Koran’s in there, we put every atom back, this is not a throwback society, way better tech than we do, flying cars, we could go to the moon anytime we want, kind of stuck, tame scientists, chosen scientists, dynamism there, translating, reading from Hugh’s point of view, ho we think he should feel, he has a different emotion than we thought he did, that same language from Sixth Column, formal language, very good writing, ranking this book low, roll you eyes and throw your phone across the room sort of scenes, Evan’s [Lampe’s] shows on Heinlein, leveling the shelter, not idea rich, fixed it with dynamite, similar scenes in Tunnel In The Sky, people can make mistakes, a pen for wild animals, commute to the beach, making and argument, the list of things in the bomb shelter, prepper porn, the list of books, he wanted to have ammonia and iodine, you might need to blow up bridges, Red Dawn (1984), John Milius, Nazi staybehinds during WWII, strike back at the oppressor, an uprising after the apocalypse, fight for America, a Red Dawn prep book, inspiration for white supremacists survivalists, teaching Nazis to fish, libertarians, also Indian, neither is good, but the arc of the book, not even a benevolent dictator, whether Heinlein intended it or not, “those people”, that’s not in this book, they’re just cannibals, sub-humans, it’s human nature that whoever’s at the top, plays into, so depressing, nobody will do the right thing, nobody needs to read this book that is not a student of genre history, we’re not wrapping up yet, the list of books, page 50, books were the immortal part of man, rape a defenseless friendly book, I want to bring it in, I’ve got a tommy gun I’m gonna make them read it, so annoying, still a good book, ugh cringey, up to a point, if the book closes up before that, the characters were thin, huge plot holes, not a good book for Maissa, Duke and Karen are entitled baby boomers, Kitten’s a millennial, gen x, what baby say about gen x, limited world view, and her racist jokes, the voice, Tom Weiner, cheerful sarcasm, sarcastic but serious, is Barbara the thinnest character in the book?, a lot of screentime, getting to the plot, getting to the ideas, she’s divorced, Hugh’s divorced too, that’s not fair, since you’re divorced, a Karen move, looking at things as an outsider, most loveable character is Dr. Livingstone, the twins are slobbery, Ponce is strong as a character, Jesse was apologizing for Hitler, that makes Ponce worse, Ponce is not a good person, he’s telling Barbara this, a super-strong argument about the master slave dynamic in the South, I barely tingle them, are you happy?, haven’t I been good to you, technowhips, a work of political angst, also angsty about WWIII, grotesque, trying to solve it, a radical shift, fifth gear to 1st gear, Karen’s death could have been avoided, sets up a Farnham’s Freehold in the end, silver coins, a 45 automatic, towels, knowledge and experience, two children, looting from the gas station, in their own bombshelter we presume, children to breed with their children, they go back to an alternate world, trying to fit it in with his giant chronology, back to the past, slave dystopia anyway, a more optimistic note, good point, Trish!, subtle, some version of him comes back to the original world, infinite world, Karen is always still alive, a very writerly thing, to make you read the book again, what did I miss the first time, time is a flat circle, 30 years later, the cannibalism is a shock the first time, seeded right when they get to that world, he didn’t write this by the seat of his pants, let me construct a massive thing, you’re going to hate some of it, maybe in this universe the chosen won’t rise up, sees the bald guy, I just saw the weirdest guy, how does someone get like that, racist against himself, the car being an automatic, what it implies is the time travel is happening in all different dimensions, why did she had a stickshift?, he could repopulate the earth with himself, don’t tell Heinlein, turning people into food, on the cover, butter and somedays bread, jerked Quisling by the neck, mostly satire, racist trope, Hitler was a vegetarian, Hitler liked dogs, I can have it both ways, the brinksmanship, he (failed to) raise(d) that kid, Karl Joseph, Carl Gustaf, leader of Norway, not a very good Norwegian accent, the Vichy, from 1942-1945, a little after chat, complimentary books, Regnum Congo, mentioned in The Picture In The House by H.P. Lovecraft, In The Barn by Piers Anthony, alternate world farmhand, humans raised as meat, sensory deprivation, thumbs again, makes them more docile, improves the flavour, tempered, slut vs. tempered, made stronger, fine tuned, calmer, a good word, Heinlein was a master craftsman, you’re supposed to, intentionally being obnoxious, made me so mad at him, he’s right to do it, he knows what he’s doing, breeding, slaves bloodlines, The Domination Of The Draka by S.M. Stirling, Steven Barnes’ Lion’s Blood, the black plague, colonized by Muslims instead of Europeans, Irish slave, Africans or whatever, friends in power imbalance, a really interesting book, concur with Trish, a sequel, Zulu Heart, well done, interesting fellow, co-written with Larry Niven, Seascape Tattoo, very impressed with this book, No., Why?, Heinlein!, god damn you!, why are you doing this?!, The Water-babies by Charles Kingsley, anti-science, anti-democracy, how democracy starts, pirate ships, all volunteer, if the leadership changes, the plank, put you off on an island, Paul is going to take issue, Paul is pretty sure, there’s a lot going on, the pirate codes, A High Wind Over Jamaica by Richard Hughes, Paul can leave, abandoning this, caught between two things, Paul is not fine, one of those rights thing, you can’t get your rights back, NYRB, The New York Review Of Books, audiobook, apostrophe s, a good pirate book, a gripping story, post-colonial Caribbean, supposed innocents, atypical setting, the truth of human nature, 1929, William Golding’s horrible book The Lord Of The Flies, Blue Lagoon, Victorian, isn’t as beautiful, disturbing, saw it on a shelf, thoughtful and thorough, tell you all about the book, proof against the standard spoiler wreck, differently distributed, The Strand bookstore, Houston, Huston Do You Read, male astronauts cast forward in time, there are no men anymore, Saturday in December, posed as a male author, such male writing, only a man could have written this, a practical joke, George Elliot, George Sand, Hugh Grant, Impromptu (1991), Emma Thompson, Judy Davis, a little too French and long winded, she’s kinda like Heinlein but meaner, Paul not Jvstin, democracy and pirates, Madagascar, Pirate Enlightenment by David Graeber, richer pirating grounds in the Indian Ocean, Tortuga, the Madagascar women, colonists and natives of the Caribbean, pirate kings, pirate queens, if you’re a captain on a pirate ship, Black Sails didn’t go to sea very much, sailors don’t like sailing, they need to sail, rich people with a yacht, fishermen don’t love the sea, pirates don’t have family, they have addiction, make merry, his share is higher, bosun, they have responsibilities, pirates had to do certain things, drink all fuckin day, a whole mini-version of the political state as the nation state, Caribbean pirates, white slaves in the British and French navies, Jesse’s joke: I was impressed by the British navy’s recruiting methods, your health is fucked, they liberate your ship, why would you attack a ship with no good stuff on it, white and black slave ship sailors, not-chattel slavery, hauling humans, swabbing out shit and vomit, sometimes they’ll sell the slaves, everyone has guns and knives, Heinlein’s paradise, relatively recent scholarship, The General History Of The Pyrates, The Many-Headed Hydra by Peter Linebaugh and Marcus Rediker, the term that capitalists use to describe the slaves, you always have to be putting down the slaves down all the time, slave rebellion, history from below, Maroon communities, tri-racial isolates, Evan Lampe, when brought to shore, women were expected to run business, aliens with treasure, Against All Flags (1952), basically The Fast And The Furious (2001) but with ships or Point Break (1991), with the consent of the locals, lying claims, oral traditions and cultural practices, what parts of Africa weren’t colonized?, a pirate utopia, the history that’s coming out of there, a lot of sex for 50 – 60 years, biracial descendants, the European kings, this strange thing called democracy, those Americans in the colonies, a hidden history other than John Locke, Greece, a lot like Heinlein, a historian of the Atlantic, do another one, he’s read enough books, mostly fiction, Will and Ariel Durant, this attitude toward fiction: a character has to be likeable, damaging, some people read for comfort, Hugo books, sequel books, diminishing returns, in any series, characters are there to fulfill the job, no heroes, smiling dashing hero, Red Planet, a lot of people don’t have an identity, changing their genders, somebody gave you a name, you don’t know who you are, growing up, a lot of people never find that, most people don’t read at all, reading as an escape identity, other realities from a long time ago, not surprising but very common, it hurts literature, your characters have got to be likeable, choosing the right things to focus on, grossing out, war in Malaya, Seventh Dawn (1964), William Holden, a tropical version of Dr. Zhivago (1965), Malaysia’s failed war of independence, the British version of Vietnam, chopping people’s heads off and holding the heads of their enemies and smiling, British commandos, ghost writing gig, Catcher In The Rye, punish children.

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

If Worlds Of SF, July 1964 - list of books in the Farnham's Freehold bombshelter

Farnham's Freehold - IF Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Farnham's Freehold - IF - Worlds Of Science Fiction

Doug Potter art for Farnham's Freehold

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The SFFaudio Podcast #773 – READALONG: Sailing to Byzantium by Robert Silverberg

The SFFaudio PodcastJesse, Paul Weimer, Will Emmons, Terence Blake, and Jonathan Weichsel talk about Sailing to Byzantium by Robert Silverberg

Talked about on today’s show:
a very accurate copy of Terence, go by Jonathan, Asimov’s, February 1985, Silverberg has a problem, his skills, he loves literature, doesn’t know much about science, loves history, children, all of his stories are about marriage basically, not every story is a marriage story, I think my dog knows aliens, that doesn’t involve relationships, an inversion of Passengers, The Roller Coaster by Alfred Bester is more Passengers than Passengers, Jesse’s focus and primary point of interest is ideas, cuz I’m a dude, gender stereotype this, as far as Jesse is concerned, once upon a time, came to understand and appreciate, still immature, pleasure and value, idea first and foremost, when characters are pushed, the high point of the book, that he is an android, Jonathan is smarter than Jesse apparently, the known simulacra won’t obey him, did you command it?, that’s good, the other hint, I remember New York, that’s because he’s Robert Silverberg, Dark City (1998), programmed that way, rented on Laserdisc, Director’s Cut, too crazy to be released in cinemas, narration in the beginning, inferior product, Charlez Philips, Yankees, hot dog, presumed this was another in the tradition of C.M. Kornbluth’s The Marching Morons, William Morris, the revelation, internal thinking, what he’s thinking about what this guy’s saying, the opening description is repeated three times, it’s beautiful, description of the dawn in Alexandria, the writing is beautiful, the concept is solid, The City In The Stars by Arthur C. Clarke, what the plot is, guy has girlfriend, guy loses girlfriend, guy searches for girlfriend, the writing… so good, perfect length, I read a piece of literature and I have something to say about it, Downward To The Earth, Heart Of Darkness, the Yates poem, responding to the poem, his one trick, he’s a guy who loves literature and science fiction, knows a lot about ancient cities, Gilgamesh The King, Silverberg is really good, Up The Line, a tourist book, tourism, The History Of Tom Jones, A Foundling by Henry Fielding, the novel not the singer, a Tom Jones of timetravel, not trying to hide it, hey I’m doing this thing, The Secret Sharer, I read this amazing thing let me respond, very solidly, William Coon, I got an iPhone with GPS, childless, there’s no children in this world, there’s no adults in the world, our main character is the adult, go for characters, Paul try to defend her, she’s an Eloi, there’s mostly all Eloi, a little more conciousness, the robots are the Morlocks, you can’t be here, the unpaid proletariat of the society, money is meaningless, who is actually fixing these robots, other robots, this doesn’t need any addition, a very small idea, deconstruct it as well as a scientificly plausible future, a new person for the city, a guy from the 1960s who wakes up in 2023 and finds out his phone has GPS, how a post scarcity economy becomes a society of spectacle, where we had Mark Twain on, Enter a Soldier. Later: Enter Another, Innocents Abroad is about the invention of tourism, modern tourism, nice and stable, Americans going to Europe, travelogues, vacations vs. tourism, you build things for the tourists, Paris needs the Eiffel Tower, everything becomes insubstantial, you need to see the centaur grazing, tourism is a negative, taking the tour vs. living somewhere, some ad man, the Seven Wonders of the World, sex tourism, let’s go get some slaves, tourism is about the middle class, getting lots of bums in seats, tourist facilities, at the airport to take you to a hotel, the hotels haven’t been invented yet, Evan is in Thailand, a vacation destination vs. tourism, their whole lives are vacations, the only thing that dies in this world is the cities, Rome is the Eternal City, Paris, see the thing that Hitler and Hemingway looked at, a touchpoint on a checklist, the particular theme, the actual plot, we broke up a little bit, we’re back together, a very cynical take on what immortal people are like, they’re very shallow, juxtapose it, Ian Bank’s Culture novels, self-actualized, we’re in China, the emperor sitting on his throne waving his hand being fanned, impossibly drunk, wakes up having sex, conspired, he’s being raped by her, here’s my problem with the scene, emotional consequences, oh well that happened to me, they haven’t programmed him to have, pre-neanderthals, sexy cave woman sidles up to sexy cave man, people are people, people are not even people, a robot with personhood, glands and hormones and emotional reactions, he’s a primitive, coasts along, acculturation, like an Eloi, a strange lack in the programming, violent, goes with the flow, his love is real, he’s a robot that can be programmed to be drunk, cultural expectations, he’s just a very 20th century man, the hidden robots, this place is closed, it’s not a place anymore, his creator, mobile tourist attractions, his future, New Chicago era, don’t you know you’re a robot dude?, I’ve been bewitched, what you’re saying is witchcraft, imagine if Philip Jose Farmer wrote this book, more sex, Tarzan lives 10,000 years ago and lives all of time, historical character to spend time with, Elizabeth and Drake and them, what am I gonna do with my life, just a guy living in a world, his girlfriend’s run away from him, they’re indistinguishable, one is worried about getting old, he’s just riding that, the call to action is the girl leaving him, the catalyst, he doesn’t know he is, he doesn’t know he has that problem, the plot requires him to have a problem, what is his solution?, you become immortal like me and become a robot, just a way of ending the book, the plot is not important to this story, Downward To The Earth, Congo planet, say sorry to the elephants, the elephants sometimes get violent, checking in on people he used to know, meditating on a good book, the poem, 3 minutes, 4 stanzas, Sailing to Byzantium by William Butler Yates, on reading Silverberg’s novella length discussion of this poem…, making it the setting for this poem, a secular heaven, where the movie and the book got it from, the ending of the novella doesn’t go far enough, they should have gone to Byzantium to find the planners and become planners again, you need imagination and curiosity to recreate all these ancient cities, that is what would absolutely happen, a very modest tired science fiction story, Mockingbird by Walter Tevis, sad and meditative world, illiteracy is the center of the book, it should be a satire, university professorships and everybody is illiterate, if this goes on…, doing drugs all the time and experiencing a new media, a couple of people who don’t fit, live near the zoo, the journey to find the truth of their world, you need to go into the tunnels and find the planners, a big computer program, an explanation will be a letdown, the way Arthur C. Clarke gets out of it, everybody’s an artist and an art critic, very chaste, how did these people predict the future so accurately, go to other planets, only one city now, in the same universe, this could be a period of The Forever War, Forever Peace, Forever Free, struck to close to home, connected with people long enough your brain changes, it did not work for Paul, very unrealistic, a priori, connecting to and using drones, the drones thing is very solid, his solution to peace, about the peace thing, any plan to achieve world peace is going to be a nightmare, mind-control, manipulation, Mindbridge by Joe Haldeman, he didn’t write as much as Silverberg, inactive, confusing somebody, Camouflage, Buying Time, Work Done For Hire, makes them horny for each other, this sounds good, won the nebula, they like the fancy writing, reward each other for fancy writing, has a little bit of fancy writing, you’re a guy and you wake up in the future and everybody’s gay, it’s the 70s, he’s the pervert, I’m the only heterosexual man in the universe, why it’s a good book, different from Heinlein, an answer, a riposte, an echo, with a different brain doing the work, we have started on reading half of Tor Doubles, Gene Wolfe, that’s a problem, hit Jesse with the “it’s a problem” stick, that’s a problem for this podcast, there are too many books to do, best decisions Jesse’s life, a great formula, Seven American Nights by Gene Wolfe, is the writer reliable?, a 19th century story, a Norman Spinrad story, visit the fallen New York, the Brooklyn Bridge, a big stack of Tor Doubles, A Meeting With Medusa, mature Arthur C. Clarke, Nightwings, Greg Bear’s Hardfought, went off the rails, no be like H.P. Lovecraft die of cancer from eating beans, Eye For Eye by Orson Scott Card, no, Hawksbill Station, Color Of Neanderthal Eyes by James Tiptree Jr. and Michael Bishop, the ideal podcast, in some cases, he’s not likely to give permission, refuse to do a book by someone who is so anti-queer, his religion is bullshit, he can have it, Salvation Army bucket, a 19th century spinoff of the temperance movement, they really are an army, charity thing only now, rope people in with their homeless shelters, where they indoctrinate you, when Orson Scott Card dies will it be okay?, Ender’s Game and other things, a cigarette pack that says cancer kills, as a part of the canon, weird and distorted people, Nancy Kress, find traces, they way Heidegger was a Nazi, resistance from Heidegger scholars, finding ways to prune that list, Pugnacious Peacemaker by Harry Turtledove, a sequel, The Saliva Tree by Brian Aldiss, The Wheels Of If by L. Sprague De Camp, Saddam Hussein’s fantasy novels, required reading in Iraqi schools, rushing to finish his latest book, very passionate author, Bill Clinton’s espionage thrillers, two branches we can go down, somebody did this, back to Silverberg, see something, tweet it at me, very good but not super controversial book, visiting over the shoulder, Asgard, so impressed with Silverberg, you’re clearly not an ancient astronaut guy, Hindu nationalists, very weird western dudes, Born With The Dead, French language SFFaudio, a collection, soon to be a motion picture, The Silent Invaders, A Time Of Changes, that’s the thing with the pronouns, obscene I, coming to a consensus, a famous one, a first contact one, Thorns, tourism but not ancient, all around the universe, super-depressing, Kurt Vonnegut, life is meaningless, Vonnegut is funny, Thorns is not funny, a depressed version of Vonnegut, it’s Liggoti, I cried with Born With The Dead at the end, saddening or depressing, aliens disfigured him, a recluse, people look at him weird, donating 100 of her eggs, she’s got 100 babies she’ll never see, Mark Zuckerberg, emotional vampire, across known space, inability to form a real relationship, Letters From Atlantis, mind in other people sort of thing, ancient Atlantis, it has Silverberg’s strengths, A Hero Of The Empire, a Roma Eterna story, a Paul book, the consensus I’m hearing, worried about being depressed, this pronoun is forbidden, a powerful mind altering drug, a message of liberation, a cult favourite, 1971, October 22, some troll was in my schedule, Scott is listed there, maybe Scott was trolling, The Weirwoods by Thomas Burnett Swann, a fantasy book, semi-erotic fantasy novels, Tolkien’s level, cool looking ace cover, bear with an eyepatch, time of the Etruscans, Cirsova submission, sexually explicit, pornography on this podcast, imagine Piers Anthony was a serious author, how these prompts work, the female characters show the most growth, male water sprite is kidnapped, an actor who is travelling through, go to my girl in the waterworld, oh are you a virgin?, what no maybe I don’t know, have you been to an orgy, I’m horny now, you’ll be horny later, 5 hours, thank you, very enjoyable book, I like the short, more depth to it, more going on, different ideas, characters, concepts, weird aquatic animals, a safari vs. tourism, spend time with the natives, Thorns is like a space-cruise, Up The Line, from a poem?, pretty obscure, Up The Line by Robert Silverberg, Paul Boehmer, a time courier, a lusty Greek, a sex book, uber eats guy, goofballs goofing off, the Time Patrol, labour stuff, sex with my ancestor, I’m gonna go make myself, I’m gonna become rich, a weird attitude, you can’t break the rules, they’re managers, serialized in Amazing, has good art, a sex comedy, Hot Tub Time Machine (2010), very deep, as a man, a feature or a bug, definitely one or the other, straightfaced is weird, commentary on the 1980s, also our world, people create avatars for themselves, playing with real people and NPCs, Skyrim with AI companions, go kill that big bear over there, says something snarky, people are normally playing against NPC with scripted conversations, NPC companions helping you to kill other NPCs, barely real, scene fillers, one of the amazing things, follow that person, see where they’re going, where reality takes us, business and agenda, I’m going and buying the thing I was told to buy, I’m wearing my mask, make the dog poop, buy a newspaper, early 20s in New York, ticket scalper, rich people buy $1000 Broadway tickets, a concierge at a hotel, people walking by, Grand Theft Auto, The Truman Show (1998), functions there, the same people going back and forth, very educational, a weird form of nature, being inside of somebody’s spleen, catch on fire, speaking of firetrucks, is Will still covered in cats?, dog is having seizures, an intercranial disease, it was joyous, cheeseburger for my dog please, not permanent, new cats coming in all the time, covered in its own feces, it was like that, what does this have to do with making money for capitalism?, acquiring capital, conceivably, put em up on some website, record it, God Save the Mark by Donald E. Westlake, should be fun, very relationship oriented, more than year, he’s gotta educate people, nun’s business, she’s good, she’s got some meanness in her, all about the kindness, Jason Thompson was tweeting about cruelty, honesty is something you need in your life, cruel and not honest, cruel and honest, at least with words, ideas are potentially cruel, The Screwfly Solution isn’t an indictment of men, subject fleshy creatures, let’s all play nice, when Paul says “no, Jesse”, is the pope raping children by not shutting down his empire?, pedophile priests are a thing, we should be suspicious, do I look fat in this dress?, no, you look fat in every dress, cruel truths coming out of fiction, does that help answer your question, it’s important, is The Colorado Kid a western?, set in Maine, a Hard Case Crime book, illustrations, real bad man, such a shitlib, occasionally make a mistake, when the drugs went the talent went, the Trump derangement drug, much better as a cruel mean drunk, The Running Man is so good, reading for meanness, Lord Tyger, Philip Jose Farmer, Tarzan Alive, A Feast Unknown, 150 pages-ish, short Stephen King with a great cover and interior illustrations, a concept, Mr. Mercedes, Cell, he does characters really really well, really good book, on a lot of things, not substanial in the way science fiction can be, his fantasy is his own construction, peripherally crime book, crime books are good, Lawrence Block, Raymond Chandler, formula, Jim Thompson, cruel guy, The Killer Inside Me, The Grifters, Westlake wrote the script, a great movie and great book, harrowing, the paperback on the spinner wrack, gut punch on page one, waiting for your bus, getting off the bus, you finish it that night, character driven literature, crime is an interesting situation, how can I get the police involved, the police are a new invention, they’re a bad thing, why Breaking Bad is very interesting, empire building, the wife is there to say what you’re doing is wrong, that was always inherent with that show, what were the bad things he’s doing, killing people is bad, he has cancer, disrespected, no health care, accepted his buyout, wealthy billionaire, a man’s dignity, it’s not about Walter White or Heisenberg, that ain’t what Star Trek is, what Star Trek really is, fuckin terrible, crime is the philosophy of how to be, The Postman Always Rings Twice, Mildred Pierce by James M. Cain, a little bit of outside of society, chess pieces, the criminal mind, moral dilemma, I’m going to lower myself, he knows that he’s doing wrong, he’s the weakest character, Jesse Pinkman is a much stronger character, he’s just a dumb guy, yo, he thinks of himself as very high, he’s brought low, he destroys the things that he loves he says, the show is trying to moralize at the end, he has to be brought low and feel bad about what he’s done, Better Call Saul, all the characters are strong, a better show because it doesn’t have the wife and kids aspect, to setup the fall, Jimmy McGill, at sea on his own, stupid and lucky vs. smart and unlucky, really interesting American stories, Double Indemnity, so greasy, he never did anything nice to me, I guess I’ve got to kill him, they betray each other, super-short, makes you love reading, a good movie, Fred McMurray and a lady with a wig, Edward G. Robinson, Mildred Pierce, so good, very successful, Jim Thompson, a Greek tragedy, they also cut each other up with knifes, his writing is bloody, turn the page and cut your arm, movies that went underground, This World The The Fireworks, Billy Zane and Gina Gershon are lovers and brother and sister, Flowers In The Attic, a funny stream of pro-incest propaganda, ‘Tis Pity She’s A Whore aka ‘Tis Pitty Shee’s A Whoore, forbidden love, go with your heart, okay enough, daughter, suitor, dorks, if I can’t have you sister, nobody can, not as flowery as Shakespeare, has sex with his sister, pulls her heart out with a dagger, a huge monologue with a beating heart, and on that note Terence leaves, Farnham’s Freehold, Pirates Of Venus, subsequently shownoting in, Ill Met In Lankhmar, add Scott to the conversation, it’s X now, Elon pictures, Twitter building with an X on top, very Christian, a sideways cross, Brave New World, he wants twitter to be like We Chat, Space X etc., the hub of their social credit system, editing up a whole other podcast, might be too fresh, John Buchan wrote The Thirty-Nine Step, spy fiction, weird fiction, Algernon Blackwood, a very competent upperclass guy, later Governor General of Canada, his weird fiction is pretty cool, how’s Connor doing these days, since he went to Germany, pretty active for an inactive guy, lost his twitter account for a while, Moon Of Skulls, already confused, The Warriors, plus movie, the original version of the movie, re-edited, 7 hours, 19 minutes, a lot of books we want to read, how do I winnow the books I can read, read more books, consider leaving twitter, there are many options, Facebook groups to join, being controlled by evil giant corporations, how they get you trapped, same story, going to Burger King, never read Donald E. Westlake, he’s also known as Richard Stark, puttin’ you down, fancy spellings, he won an Oscar for that, he wrote a script for a James Bond movie, a fifth of Hard Case Crime in the early days were Westlakes, a real life coup, comedy and crime books, Brothers Keepers, Somebody Owes Me Money, Anarchaos, also about insurance, Lee Marvin, Mel Gibson, love his series, so good, Might Sons Of Hercules anthology, communists vs. conservatives, can we agree on that, throw each other out of helicopters, the bad takes, full of bad takes, get into tea about, the showing up for the podcast, Mirko (the German guy), @MrLovecraft, I was browsing through our messages down to 2016, mostly take pictures of random stuff, a bowlful of tools, I know what he smells like, I need to sniff it everyday, his whole cowboy hat collection, archives, complete access, archive.org, the secret, mostly all the time, look for pulps, only processed stuff on the PDF page, so much good writing in one magazine from April of 1899, Guy De Maupassant, Maurice Level, a successor to Maupassant, weird mean stories, the first translations into English, horrible syphilis, The String aka A Piece Of String, string collection, the cops come by, did you steal a wallet, somebody saw you, and yet you refuse to explain, dropped it into my other pants, too embarrassing, The Necklace aka The Diamond Necklace, Bel Ami, dissatisfied with her life, she could’ve married much higher, the governor’s ball, kinda like Cinderella, saving up money to buy a gun, trying to save money, you have that friend, you’re brilliant, the event goes swimmingly, she’s lost the necklace, they retrace their steps, what are we gonna do, mortgage and borrow and replace it, 20 years go by, just finally paid off the debt, scrub maid, looking elderly now, so proud, cost me all these years of work, walk away bleeding from the page, he’s just so mean, a social climber, corruption in the third French republic, why don’t you just become a reporter?, that’s okay it doesn’t matter, get a good wife to do the writing, love triangles, meanspirited, a really good portrait, impressionism or naturalism, what’s right in front of us right now, rejected, jotting down descriptions of people, it can be very powerful, a Fyodor Dostoevsky novel, one of the vampire guys, Uma Thurman, so good, in school, Scaramouche by Raphael Sabatini, no Westlake, no Sabatini, pirate books, Captain Blood, a contemporary of Johnston McCulley, huge in their day, lasting influence, a lot of Stephen King is loving Westlake, TV writers, to survive after you die, to champion in, Lovecraft, Kafka, C.L. Moore, her second husband, Philip K. Dick is trying to suppress, Charles Burnett Swan, why is he unknown now?, a little dirty, a little embarrassed, their are no heirs, his publishers, Space Viking, Little Fuzzy, Omnilingual, very off, posting more, pulp collection, Alan Muller, The Skull, Black Priestess Of Varda, The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer, the secret is Will’s been in hiding in South America, not knowing what to say, come up with a brilliant thesis that everybody hates, she’s secretly transgender, everybody accepts this, double novel sucker, remaindered, Tor business, I might read half of it, Ace Doubles, just in case, Ace Doubles, there’s no time, The Sioux Spaceman, And Then Town Took Off, Conquest Of The Space Sea, insane cover, reading glasses, go back far enough in Luke Burrage’s podcast, audiobooks, what are those?, only does audiobooks, almost exclusively audiobooks, washing dishes, scrubs toilet, how can you not want to do it all the time, slow reading, a DAW Yellow Spine, to be sitting and staring at a piece of paper, I’m done, Riders Of The Purple Sage, Zane Grey, gonna be sparky, a weird writer, antiquated, everybody’s having all these emotions, the phenomenally successful author, the Ohio Valley, violent opposition, turbulent, Lewis Wetzel, Girdy Bros., seems a little long, more cattle rustlers, Tales Of The Lonely Trails, Elmore Leonard, good but not deep, dialogue is so good, Out Of Sight, the other Batman who lives on Lake Como, Clooney/Lopez, a TV show, Karen Sisco, a test story, Justified, expand the idea and keep the character, colour splashing, the same recipe, Quentin Tarantino championed Elmore Leonard, nothing else is an adaptation, Robert Forster and Pam Grier, revisiting with Sam Jackson, Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci is not in Heat, Rum Punch, set in Florida, Florida books, shallower and deeper, more style, Get Shorty, it’s fine, more of his own thing, Florida writers, Carl Hiaasen, cat lady books for men, character descriptions, superficial writing for rich people, their character description is their bank statements, Mario Puzo, Fool’s Die, big sprawling book about a guy and his story, I am the master of magic, a tour de force of writing, Grover Gardner, Grover’s voice is much like this, Paul hates it, don’t let self-doubt hold you back, thesis optional, see you in cyberspace, a ghost writing gig, a really big one, famous celebrity?, chat GPT, people don’t understand what a writer does, done their research for them, in 7 months, do it!, nobody listens, she died a long time ago, research for her historical screenplay, large famous Hollywood family, it’s Sunset Blvd. (1950), she was a hasbeen, Griffith Park pit bull, two writing assistants, lying bed and dictating to her, writers are very disposable, it’s a set of skills, mercenaries, there’s art, technical skill, ask questions, answer questions, fill places, plumbers, it needs to be plumb, a lot of writing is going to change, you can’t replace Westlake with chat GPT, entry level positions, assistants and help backing them up, people coming in, hide their assistants, George R.R. Martin has six assistants at at time, Elmore Leonard had one, sometimes writer dry up, Silverberg, a burning problem, Lawrence Block’s newsletter, he’d retire and come back from a vacation with another novel, they flow out of him, those people are pretty rare, a mental illness, a compulsion to write, a letter to CBS about Burt Lancaster as Moses, grad students he wants to fuck, Roger Zelazny, Ursula Le Guin, paranoid navel gazing, hypergraphia, a brain thing that’s happening, I need to understand, I need to question, Rosicrucian organization, you can’t read that all day long, people’s brains are different, Tishomingo Blues, Piers Anthony, so dirty, very entertaining, not great, A Spell For Chameleon, there will never be a movie, sad, leering, misogyny is fundamentally integrated, Paul won’t like it, she changes according to the phases of the Moon, full/beautiful/dumb, new/hideous/smart, all theses are fun, some theses are better than others, the lady who invented wifi they always say, smart beautiful woman, Hedy Lamarr, weird sex jokes, Satyr, female centaur, centauress, reaches over grabs her boobs, she gets angry and embarrassed, boob armour?, kids enjoy sex stories, girls are gross, girls are boring, you wanna play with dolls, jumps on motorbikes, weird period, why they were popular, Robert Lynn Asprin, paranoid, Christian parents, he wasn’t allowed to be the DM anymore, not allowed to watch The Simpsons anymore, people were a little looser, the end of free range kids, H.R. Pufnstuf, Jim Henson, 17 seasons, sidewalk sale, a guy singing, Uncle Floyd, an old soul, old stuff, L.A. for ten years, Marilyn Monroe, an empty movie theater?, a library?, 1 screen movie theater, new-fangled building, arcology?, they all have movie theaters, all the new buildings have movie theaters, Jesse is very out of touch, news to Jesse, a big screen TV size, home theaters, laserdisc, bigscreen TV, people make fun of Jonathan, a tiny tiny gym, gyms are standard, everybody is elderly, an amenity for elderly people, your dog’s already been pooped, Scarlett Johansson is a Russian spy, ballet and sex, Red Sparrow (2018), Joker (2019), the old people loved that.

Sailing To Byzantium by Robert Silverberg - art by Hisaki Yasuda

Sailing To Byzantium by Robert Silverberg

TOR DOUBLE - Sailing To Byzantium by Robert Silverberg

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The SFFaudio Podcast #301 – NEW RELEASES/RECENT ARRIVALS

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #301 – Jesse, Scott, Jenny, and Tamahome talk new releases and recent arrivals.

Talked about on today’s show:
Reading goals and the Reading Envy podcast, spy novels, The IPCRESS File by Len Deighton is a more serious version of James Bond, film version stars Michael Caine, The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum, Rogue Male by Geoffrey Household, SFFaudio Podcast #95 features a discussion with Eric Rabkin about SS-GB by Len Deighton, a Britain-centered, less crazy version of Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick, Scott on rereading Hyperion (but hasn’t read Fall of Hyperion), the Hyperion audiobook is highly recommended, Wool by Hugh Howey now a graphic novel, Jesse doesn’t like open questions that require him to read more, Kindle Worlds, Mobile Library by David Whitehouse, Bookworm villain from Batman, The Magician’s Lie by Greer Macallister reminiscent of The PrestigeA Pleasure and a Calling by Phil Hogan, some synopses are better-written than others, Patricia Highsmith, The Brenda and Effie Mysteries: The Woman in a Black Beehive by Paul Magris especially for audio, The Last Passenger by Manel Loureiro, Aurora CV-01 by Ryk Brown looks to be the perfect Scott book, this podcast features a real phaser, Hellhole by Gina Damico (not to be confused with the Kevin J. Anderson book of the same name), never underestimate evil on a sugar high, Proxima by Stephen Baxter, on how discoveries in astronomy affect science fiction, Kate Wilhelm in Orbit by Kate Wilhelm is a collection of her short stories from ca. 1966-1980 in Orbit anthologies, Scott didn’t “get” Wilhelm’s short story The PlannersSuperEgo by Frank J. Fleming, I Am Not a Serial Killer by Dan Wells, Dexter in spaaaaaaace!, A Murder of Clones by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is part of the Retrieval Artists universe, first audiobook in the series produced by Scott, the series would make a good TV show, The Android’s Dream by John Scalzi narrated by Will Wheaton, Future Crime by Ben Bova, a collection of short stories, file sharing used to happen by mail, we demand the return of cassettes (not!), #GetOffMyLawn, Pacific Edge by Kim Stanley Robinson is part of a triptych, an actual utopia, Orange County of the future, Jesse and Scott met Kim Stanley Robinson at WorldCon, no kaiju, Mort(e) by Robert Repine, Southern Reach trilogy by Jeff VanderMeer now available in one package via Audible, “there must be something wrong with it, it’s too popular!”, Make Room! Make Room! by Harry Harrison a.k.a. the book that inspired Soylent Green, Jenny lives on lentils and soybeans, The Deep by Nick Cutter, The Abyss meets The Shining, discussion of The Abyss which is recommended sans the last five minutes, Freedom Club by Saul Garnell, Trigger Warning short story collection by Neil Gaiman, on authors doing test runs or tryout stories to develop an idea, the difference between plotters and pantsers, The Globe: The Science of Discworld II by Terry Pratchett, Ian Stewart, and Jack Cohen is actually a novel, Jenny debunks the theory that all stories come from an origin, Endsinger by Jay Kristoff, Marked by Sarah Fine, Piers Anthony’s Apprentice Adept series, these books may or may not be kinky–weird kinky, Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson, David Hasselhoff does the musical, Markheim, a short story by Stevenson.

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #152 – READALONG: The Comedy Is Finished by Donald E. Westlake

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #152 – Jesse talks with Trent Reynolds and Paul Westlake about the AudioGo and Hard Case Crime novel The Comedy Is Finished by Donald E. Westlake.

Talked about on today’s show:
Is The Comedy Is Finished going to be the last Donald E. Westlake novel to be published?, Memory (and our discussion of it), Charles Ardai, Max Allan Collins, Mickey Spillane, getting paid is a priority for professional writers, the 1970s, Honeydew, USO tours, Bob Hope, the audiobook experience, Peter Berkrot’s narration of the audiobook of The Comedy Is Finished, Koo Davis, Bob Hope as Red Skelton vs. Bob Hope as Gene Kelly, Alfred Hitchcock, Ricky Gervais, Koo Davis narrates his own POV in the present everyday tense sense, “Westlake is the master of sentence by sentence writing”, “in the moment”, “the god-damned Vietnam thing”, “the real Americans”, the redemption, healing vs. moving on, Ronald Reagan, “new normal”, “the Carter malaise” and “festering wounds”, Larry, Peter, Mark has daddy issues, Joyce, the Dortmunder gang if they were all psychotic, “doing a Westlake”, why do Koo’s boys not look like him?, the role of a father, the mirror scene, “genetics don’t matter in fiction”, fatherhood as a choice, leave the messages to Western Union, character arcs, Lindsey, A Sound Of Distant Drums, radio drama, “there are round characters and there are flat characters”, “oh this is a Westlake”, “Charo has become a bitter old woman”, “a romantic writer”, succinct description, taking plots from real life, The Score, “he can heist anything”, The Mourner, The Stepfather, “that’s pretty much how these work”, three Dortmunder ideas, Kahawa should be an audiobook, California, Burbank, Santa Barbara, Elizabeth Taylor’s biography, Under An English Heaven should be an audiobook too, Anguilla, an option has been taken out on Kahawa, the new Parker movie, Stephen King’s filmography vs. Donald Westlake’s filmography, The Hot Rock, Cops And Robbers (1973), The Split (based on The Seventh), Payback, Les Alexander, The Outfit, City Of Industry, The Sour Lemon Score, Made In U.S.A., the Criterion Collection, it’s Clint Eastwood with internal monologue, a Dortmunder TV series, The Limey, Terence Stamp, Idi Amin, Uganda, “the coffee train”, Enough, Ordo, A Slight Case Of Murder, A Travesty, it’s very hard to be a Westlake expert, the sound a girl makes when you’re kissing her, “it’s just a weird name”, Bob Hope was a knight!, Conrad Black, Baron Black of Crossharbour, Westlake’s Science Fiction and Fantasy, Westlake’s renunciation of SF, Anarchaos by Curt Clark, “Rolf Malone is a precursor to Parker”, Theodore Bikel (the fiddler in The Fiddler On The Roof), The Risk Profession, Nackles (is great for kids!), The Twilight Zone, Harlan Ellison’s screenplay for Nackles, the Starship Hopeful series (available on DonaldWestlake.com), Lawrence Block’s fantasy story, SF is very allegorical (and that’s not Westlake), Humans, Westlake’s Smoke vs. Wells’ The Invisible Man, “and everybody’s an asshole”, “everybody one way or another is a jerkoff”, “Joyce goes crazy in the most wonderful way”, a survivor of Chernobyl, “is God really an asshole?”, “angels are assholes”, Milton’s Paradise Lost, The Sacred Monster, Get Real, ridicule in print, Money For Nothing, Westlake never lectured, interior thoughts that are so revealing about the shallowness of a character’s nature, Washington, D.C., “moving up the ladder”, “what does Ginger want?”, “it’s fun to play with fire”, “I’ve got to have something”, did Don hate rock and roll?, he liked classical and atonal jazz, “damn hippie”, 99% of politics is pointless, talking to death, Jimmy The Kid (a Parker novel inside of a Dortmunder novel), kidnapping, Help I Am Being Held Prisoner, Patty Hearst, Gangway, Brian Garfield, Spider Robinson’s Dortmunder homage, Lawrence Block, The Sour Lemon Score, Dashiell Hammett, Piers Anthony, Poul Anderson, Robert A. Heinlein, shiny spaceships, don’t read by genre, read by author, the genre label, Jim Thompson, The Grifters, Trent’s beef with Angelica Huston, a period piece, Paul had a problem with John Cusack, J.T. Walsh, Pat Hingle, Annette Bening, “I’ll never look at a bag of oranges the same way”, Donald Westlake: NYC Personified, The Violent World Of Parker website, Nick Jones, Westlake’s bibliography at DonaldWestlake.com.

AudioGo - The Comedy Is Finished by Donald E. Westlake

Posted by Jesse Willis

BBC7 & RA.cc: The Ghost Galaxies by Piers Anthony

SFFaudio Online Audio

BBC Radio 7 - BBC7RadioArchives.ccAvailable over on RadioArchive.cc is an audiobook that my friend Bill Hollweg recommends. Sez Bill:

Ghost Galaxies [is] one of my fave short tales. A fantastic short story [that] I have in an Asimov magazine or one of those digests I got from the library and have loved it since I read it a few months back – just found the audio and thought I would share.”

Thanks Bill! I’m torrenting it now. It looks like a winner!

Worlds Of If September 1966Tor - Ghosts by Piers AnthonyThe Ghost Galaxies
By Piers Anthony; Read by Stephen Hogan
2 Broadcasts – Approx. 1 Hour [UNABRIDGED?]
Broadcaster: BBC Radio 7
Broadcast: 2007, 2008, 2009
What happens to a galaxy when it dies? A spaceship faces an unknown future, hurtling towards the rim of the universe. First published in Worlds Of IF September 1966. This novelette was later expanded into the novel Ghosts.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Recent Arrivals from Brilliance Audio

SFFaudio Recent Arrivals

The Dolphins of Pern by Anne McCaffreyThe Dolphins of Pern
By Anne McCaffrey; Read by Mel Foster
9 CD’s – 11 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Published: 2009
ISBN: 9781423357421

When the first humans came to settle the planet Pern, they did not come alone: intelligence-enhanced dolphins also crossed the stars to colonize Pern’s oceans while their human partners settled the vast continents. But then disaster struck. The deadly silver spores called Thread fell like rain from the sky, and as human colonists’ dreams of a new, idyllic life shattered into a desperate struggle for survival, the dolphins were forgotten.

Now, centuries later, as the dragonriders of Pern prepare to complete the momentus task of ridding their world of Thread forever, T’lion, a young bronze rider, and his friend Readis, son of the Lord Holder of Paradise River Hold, make contact with the legendary “shipfish.” And as the dragonriders grapple with the end of an era, T’lion, Readis, and the dolphins face the start of a new one: reviving the bond between land- and ocean-dwellers – and resurrecting the dreams of the first colonists of Pern.
 
 
DoOon Mode by Piers AnthonyDoOon Mode
By Piers Anthony; Read by Natalie Ross
11 CD’s – 14 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Published: 2009
ISBN: 9781423376941

Beyond the world we know there is a multiverse of Modes where many strange realities interlock in an infinitely intricate pattern, and a perverse and deranged Emperor plays a deadly multidimensional game with human pawns as his slaves.

Now in DoOon Mode, Piers Anthony delivers the breathtaking climax to this awesome saga. Fearing the heroine Coleen’s dawning power, the depraved Emperor Ddwng dispatches a terrible Mind Monster to assault her soul and bend her to his will. To protect herself, and those she loves, Coleen must journey back through many worlds to her own home on Earth, face her deepest and darkest fears, and draw the strength for a final confrontation to save the multiverse from tyranny and domination.
 
 
Calling Mr. Lonely Hearts by Laura BenedictCalling Mr. Lonely Hearts
By Laura Benedict; Read by Emily Durante
9 CD’s – 11 hours – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Published: 2009
ISBN: 9781423334408

Growing up, Roxanne, Del, and Alice tested the limits of their friendship with cruel, and often dangerous, games – but they always knew they would be bound together forever. Now, Alice’s marriage is over, and her husband is having a child with another woman. Roxanne, an artist consumed by her work, is losing touch with her friends – and perhaps with reality. And Del is desperate to be a perfect wife and adoring stepmother, but her friends see that her careful facade is crumbling.

The instrument of their destruction is a single enigmatic man – Varick. He seems to be a lonely woman’s dream come true, but where has he come from? And what does he want? As he seduces the women in turn, their lives become unrecognizable to them. Varick’s secret lies buried in their shared past. One simple, childish act has brought them, all these years later, to a place where not only their lives but also their souls are at risk. For once upon a time, the three of them agreed to tell a lie – one that ruined the life of a young priest. Defrocked, destitute, and ruined, he hoped with the whole of his shattered heart that he would get revenge. And in that hope he shook hands with the one who promised it. The devil himself. Now they all must live with the consequences.

Dark and provocative, Calling Mr. Lonely Hearts will keep listeners in its terrifying grip long after the chilling conclusion.
 
Posted by Scott D. Danielson